Journalism

12/16/22

For New York Times: Atomic Tour of New Mexico

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They say the sun rose twice over a corner of southern New Mexico on July 16, 1945. The first sunrise was produced by the detonation of a new weapon its makers had nicknamed "the gadget." The actual sun rose 10 minutes later, dawning on a new era in human history.

The world's first atomic bomb exploded that morning, launching the nuclear age, and foreshadowing the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki within the month.

Though the creation of the bomb was dubbed the Manhattan Project, much of its development took place in New Mexico, making it the nation's premier nuclear state, with, today, weapons labs, a cache of nuclear weapons, a nuclear command center and atomic history around every butte. Some of the sites are off limits to the public, but it is possible to tour atomic New Mexico without getting irradiated or arrested.

Read the rest here. 

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