My parents were very touched by last week’s Mother’s Day Tribute. As I suspected, Dad printed out the entire post, including people’s responses, and Mom read them. She called and emailed to thank everyone for their comments. She was wondering where those old photos had gone and was happily surprised to rediscover them in the post.
Our old family photos got my dad thinking and Googling. Yesterday, Bo Gia (Old Daddy) found a humongous archive of historic images of Vietnam. He sent the link and I wanted to share some of them with you. They are so interesting. I haven’t had time to go through all of them but am calling out a few standouts here.
Perusing the archive of images gleaned from postcards, photos, postage stamps, and posters is like walking through a museum exhibit. They were uploaded by someone named Manhhai, and I am totally jazzed that the person took the time to scan them all in. There are French, English, and Vietnamese notations but you don’t need to be multilingual to understand what is being communicated. Additionally, the collection has been extremely well organized in time periods.
Indochine Vietnam refers to the time period when Vietnam was still a colony of France. Here’s a great collection of markets in Vietnam (Tonkin) during that time.
The collection of old Saigon street scenes from the colonial period shows the city to have been expansive, full of broad streets:
Vietnam’s tumultuous modern history is covered with sets of North Vietnamese propaganda posters and postage stamps. What was more interesting was a collection of Vietnam War photos taken by North Vietnamese photographers. It gives you a behind-the-scenes look at their tactics and efforts.
And then there are the beauty shots of Madame Nhu (Le Xuan Tran), a controversial figure in the Diem administration. A staunch Catholic who loved absolute power, she was dubbed “The Dragon Lady” by Western press. She died last month in Rome. You can read about her in this excellent obituary by Robert Templer, published in the Guardian newspaper.
South Vietnam nicely captured in this collection of 1960s and 1970s photos that look like they were taken by photojournalists. You will see the opera house, post office, Cho Lon (Chinese market), and really fabulous street scenes:
Check out Manhhai’s entire Flickr collection – which is being expanded with new uploads all the time. It's like traveling through time. You can sneak peeks whenever you have the chance.