When in 1898 Pierre and Marie Curie revealed that certain elements could be radioactive, they did not know the horrible consequences their discovery might had. Even Marie Curie became a victim of her own work, when she died because of the effects of radiation. Still, certain products containing radium or other radioactive materials stayed popular until the 1950’s, since their true danger was not, or just barely acknowledged. At the time of the Cold War this seemed to change, and no nuclear weapons were used during an armed conflict, partly because of the recognition of long lasting contamination. Unfortunately radiation decontamination still had to be done throughout history, due to accidents with nuclear weapons, power plants or other radioactive materials.

Livestock being decontaminated during a training, during the 1960’s.

Urban decontamination training, during the 1960’s.

Picture from a civilian defense slide, from the 1960’s

Sign showing danger of radiation.

Cloth showing contaminated territory, in Hungarian and Russian.

Mushroom cloud shaped lamp, used during civilian defense trainings.

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