When you are traveling, it would be a nice idea to stop by Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh city since it would showcase how brave women were during the famous Vietnam War, their daily lives, religious beliefs, and a traditional costume, Ao dai.
Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh city is currently saving 30,431 artifacts, including 929 items displayed publicly; 16,739 geometry items; 14,621 films, pictures, and historical documents. Two-thirds of the items are connected with the resistance wars, and one-third is objects made from various materials.
About Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
Address: 202 Vo Thi Sau, Ward 7, District 3
A look from the outside of Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
The museum sign is quite small and difficult to recognize. You could make a note of the intersection between Vo Thi Sau Street and Le Quy Don Street for your navigation. Because Vo Thi Sau Street is the one – way street, it would be better if you make a clear route before starting.
Morning: 7:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Afternoon: 1:30 PM – 5 PM
Free of charge
The Establishment of the Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
To celebrate 10 years of liberating Southern Vietnam and reunifying two parts of the country, Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City was inaugurated on 29th April 1985. This construction was converted from Traditional Women’s House (or called Nha Truyen Thong Phu Nu in Vietnamese). The purposes of the building are to nurture patriotism and to spread out the traditional beauty of women from the previous generations, especially the generations before the Independence of Vietnam, to the latter, which lives in peacetime.
The monumental sculpture of heroic Vietnamese mother, who have lost their children due to the war
The museum was initially 200 square meters, divided into 6 rooms. However, it was expanded to 3,000 square meters in 1986 thanks to the donation of many citizens, organizations, and the Vietnamese from overseas. The enlargement process lasted for four years and was relaunched in 1990 with 5,410 square meters in use, including a 1,000-square-meter hall and 700-square-meter storehouse. The museum is now welcome from 60,000 to 80,000 visitors per year, including international travelers, leaders, professors, students and anyone who has an interest.
What to See at Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
Suggested visiting duration: 30-45 minutes
Southern Women’s Museum building is designed and divided into three floors and eighth rooms. Each floor has its own topic, and the map of every floor is displayed at the front door and is explained in both Vietnamese and English.
The map of floor 2
The museum displays many subjects, but some of them are just exhibited occasionally, and below is 11 subjects that are showcased permanently:
- Southern women’s tradition before the establishment of The Communist Party
- Uncle Ho with southern women and southern women with Uncle Ho
- The formation and development of Vietnamese women organizations
- Southern women after The Reunification Day
- Southern women in politics
- Southern women in the military
- Southern women in foreign affairs
- Southern women in colonial prisons
- The religion which worships Ba – a female supernatural character
- Clothes, jewelry of Vietnamese women
- Traditional handmade textile
30,000 artifacts preserved at this museum are divided into 24 collections. Below is three collections which are more outstanding in informative aspect and larger in the number of artifacts, among the rest, in our opinion.
1. The collection of Ao dai in Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh city
Ao dai has become a national outfit of Vietnam. Over time, through many improvements, the ao dai Vietnam has a higher aesthetic value. The gown is truly traditional beauty, containing the soul of the nation, made beautiful designs for Vietnamese women.
The collection of Ao dai is consisted of 65 items and showcased on the first floor. As soon as you enter the room, on the left is the big brown board described the overview of how Ao dai has changed through historical changes in Vietnamese, English, and French.
Detail guidance of Ao dai in different languages at floor 1
Around the room, many Ao dai are displayed in chronological order. Therefore, it is more noticeable to compare the refinement of Ao dai among periods of time, since 1744 to the recent time.
The very first version of Ao dai in Nguyen dynasty
The more modern version of Ao dai
In the middle of the room is the pictures of important women who have devoted their whole life to the liberation and development of Vietnam.
2. The collection of the women resistances against the two wars
This collection is exhibited on the second floor of the museum and divided into four sub-topics, namely the political prisoners, foreign affairs, even women fight when enemies come, and the long hair army.
It might sound surprising but southern women played a vital role in the victory of the Vietnam wars. Shortly after the launch of the Communist Party of Vietnam, it is the beginning of many of the political struggles. In the South, hundreds of demonstrations, and strikes broke out. The demonstrations were attended by a large number of women. Apart from anti-beating demands, workers’ compensation wages, there are also separate claims for female workers. The public struggle for legitimacy in the press was also initiated as a feminist campaign. In addition, other forms of struggle such as demonstrations of people’s life, democracy, anti-tax, anti-fascist were also very strong. In the General Revolution of August 1945 and in the 9 years of the war against the French colonialists (1945-1954), women in the South were involved in many fields of political struggle such as the leader of the government overthrow, raising money to support the resistance war, fight against hunger and ignorance.
More than 1,000 photographs and artifacts from the “Southern Women’s Political Struggle” collection are stored by the Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City in various angles and categories, demonstrating the contribution of Southern women in the struggle against French colonialism and American imperialism.
On the left, there is a statue named “Unfinished suckling” created by artist Vu Ba, and on the right is the photograph “Mother and son on reunion” by author Lam Hong Long.
The struggle of rubber plantation workers
3. The collection of labor tools
Preserving and introducing the artifacts of working tools will help us to feel more deeply the role of women in the past and present life in Vietnam. Currently, the Southern Women’s museum has built a collection of 350 objects used in production activities by ethnic women in Truong Son – the Central Highlands, as well as Vietnamese, Hoa, Cham, and Khmer.
The technique of dying in Tan Chau- An Giang Province, which was very famous in both the domestic market and foreign market in the 20th century.
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Summary of Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
Southern Women’s Museum in Ho Chi Minh City is a place to embody the role of women in the two wars and preserve the traditional values; therefore the patriotism would be empowered. It is also a great place to gain knowledge about the pain caused by the wars and consequently, treasure the peace that we are living in today.
For some of you who are keen on historical topics, click here for more wonderful historical adventures.
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