JP-642775, sent by Kiyoshi.
The A-Bomb Dome is a symbol of peace which most people have at least seen at one time in a picture. The building, which was designed by a Czech architect in 1915, had been used as the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. Hiroshima citizens back then loved so much European modern-style buildings of the time. In 1912, the National Confectionery Exposition was held in this place. From that exposition, Baumkuchen, which represented German cake, was manufactured and sold in Japan for the first time. Since the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall was located only around 160 meters from the hypocenter, the building was blown up, and all those inside the building died. However, the building was not destroyed completely because the blast of the atomic bomb, which was vaporized in the air, prevented it from totally collapsing. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996 and has been representing people's prayers for a lasting peace. - in: http://visithiroshima.net/world_heritage/a-bomb_dome.html
JP-642768, sent by Mary.
First built as a fortress on the top of Mt. Kinka in 1201, Gifu Castle has a history of about 800 years. ODA Nobunaga, a famous general in Sengoku period, occupied the castle and became its master in 1567. At this time, ODA changed the name of this area from “Inokuchi” to “Gifu” and of the castle itself from “Inabayama Castle” to “Gifu Castle”. As ODA expanded his empire and unified the nation with his fresh ideas and unique politics, Gifu Castle became a bustling center of activity.
The ODA family lost the castle after Hidenobu, Nobunaga's grandson, allied his clan with the losing side of the decisive Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 that resulted in over 250 years of Edo Shogunate rule of Japan.
The present three-story and four-floor castle was rebuilt with ferroconcrete construction in 1956 and has been a popular symbol of Gifu City ever since. - in: http://www.gifucvb.or.jp/en/01_sightseeing/01_02.html