Nagasaki (長崎) or “Long Cape” was Japan’s second oldest port open to foreign trade (after Hirado) and the only Japanese port permitted by the Tokugawa shogunate between 1639 and 1859 when all other ports were closed.
It has played a prominent role in foreign trade relations and was the Hidden Christian Sites in Japan.
By the 1600s, tensions had risen to such a state that the Portuguese were expelled, along with the Protestant English; trade was then restricted to the Dutch and, to a lesser degree, the Chinese and Koreans.
Over the next 200 years, as the rest of Japan was closed to the West, Nagasaki became a centre for information on Western technology and science.
In the early 20th century the city became a major shipbuilding centre; it was this industry that led to Nagasaki’s being chosen as a target for the second atomic bomb dropped on Japan by the United States in World War II.
The bomb was dropped on August 9, 1945, and destroyed the innermost portion of Nagasaki; between 60,000 and 80,000 persons were killed.
Nagasaki’s mission today is to send a message of peace and harmony to the world.