America’s Top-Secret Atomic Cities

America’s Top-Secret Atomic Cities

America’s Top-Secret Atomic Cities

Secret Architecture Oak Ridge 1

Secret Architecture Oak Ridge 2

Secret Architecture Oak Ridge 3

“What you see here, what you do here, what you hear here, when you leave here, let it stay here.” So say posters and billboards that were once posted all over Oak Ridge, Tennessee, one of the United States Government’s three secret cities that toiled away on The Manhattan Project: atomic bombs that would soon devastate two cities in Japan. 75,000 employees lived and worked in Oak Ridge with absolutely no idea what they were actually party to. Their town wasn’t even on the map, and visitors were restricted. They didn’t find out the exact nature of their work until the infamous atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in the final stages of World War II in 1945.

Oak Ridge joined Los Alamos, New Mexico and Richland, Washington as a major research and development site producing fissionable materials for nuclear weapons. Employees brought in from other areas of the country were screened with lie detector tests. There were so many of them in this small town with a former population of just 3,000, the government had to house them in temporary huts. Hundreds of photos of life inside Oak Ridge were captured by Ed Westcott, the only government-authorized photographer during the Manhattan Project. The American Museum of Science and Energy has published them on Tumblr.

by http://weburbanist.com

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