Industrial port (coal, iron, shipbuilding) on Nagasaki Bay, Kyushu Island, Japan, capital of Nagasaki prefecture; population (2014 est) 433,500. Industries include the manufacture of steel and electrical equipment. Nagasaki was the only Japanese port open to European trade from the 16th century until 1859. The first modern Japanese shipyard opened here 1855–61. On 9 August 1945, an atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki by the USA.
The port was opened to Western trade in 1571. Western trade was confined to the artificial island Dejima (Deshima) from its construction 1634–36 to 1859. Three days after Hiroshima had been bombed, the second atom bomb was dropped on Nagasaki at the end of World War II. Of Nagasaki's population of 212,000, an estimated 40,000 were killed and thousands more injured, not counting the long-term victims of radiation.
US president Truman decided to drop the atomic bombs in order to bring a swift end to the war and to save the lives of US soldiers. He had warned, after Hiroshima had been bombed, that the Japanese would be bombed every three days until they surrendered. Nagasaki was actually the secondary target of Bockscar, a B-29 carrying the atomic bomb known as ‘Fat Man’, after Kokura (the primary target) was covered in haze and smoke from a US bombing raid on a nearby city.
Glover mansion in Nagasaki recalls the life of 19th-century British merchant Thomas Glover. Nagasaki is home to Nagasaki University (1949).
Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki