Vietnam Center & Archive News and Updates

Monday, October 28, 2013

Spotlight: Two New ODP Scanners

This October two new students joined the archive in scanning the FVPPA/VAHF Collection’s ODP Application files.

Alexia

Alexia

 

A Junior majoring in Biology, a Pre-PA (Physicians Assistant), Alexia is originally from Denver, Colorado. She moved to Cypress, TX eleven years ago. She enjoys outdoor activities, especially running and camping. Alexia started working at the archive in February of 2013 as an oral history transcriptionist. Having transcribed Khuc Minh Tho’s oral history interview has given her valuable insight into and understanding of the ODP files. What she enjoys most about scanning the ODP files is the detective aspect of finding the applicants information and making it available online. Alexia finds working at the archive interesting, especially learning history through the people/participants themselves.

Ashley

Ashley

Ashley is a Junior from Premont, TX, majoring in Community, Family and Addiction Studies. Inspired by “To Write Love on Her Arms,” Ashley’s goal is to have her own nonprofit organization that focuses on helping teenagers struggling with addictions, self harm, depression, and suicide by helping them get rehab and support services, as well as educating parents on how to assist their children through the process. Ashley loves to play sports, especially basketball, volley ball, and weight lifting. Ashley started working at the archive in September of 2013. What she enjoys most about working with the ODP files is reading about individual people, their stories, how much they care about their families, and how hard they tried to bring their families with them.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

New Look for the VNCA Website

The Vietnam Center and Archive website has a new look.  This redesign, in addition to the new color scheme, includes a new layout for the home page and improved navigation.  The Virtual Vietnam Archive has also been updated to include:

  • New color scheme
  • Ability to limit by media type on the simple search page
  • Filter search results by media type or by item availability
  • Sort by the date the item was created, or by the date the item was added to the Virtual Vietnam Archive
  • Larger preview images for photographs, slides, and artifacts
  • and more…

Both the VNCA website and the Virtual Vietnam Archive are now also optimized for use on mobile devices.

Please check out the site and let us know what you think!

 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Texas Vietnam Heroes Exhibit Arrives at the Museum of Texas Tech University

Transfer Ceremony for the arrival of the Texas Vietnam Heroes Exhibit

The Texas Vietnam Heroes Exhibit, part of the Texas Capitol Vietnam Veterans Monument Project, arrived at the Museum of Texas Tech University today.  This moving tribute to honor and remember every Texan who died in the Vietnam War includes 3,417 hand-embossed dog tags, one for each Texan member of the US Armed Forces who died during the War, including 102 tags for Texans still listed as Missing in Action.  Visitors are encouraged to interact with the exhibit through touching the tags.  The exhibit arrived escorted by the Patriot Guard Riders, and included a ceremony for the receiving of the exhibit by Texas Tech, represented by History professor and Vietnam Veteran Dr. Ron Milam.

The exhibit, cosponsored by the Museum of Texas Tech University and the Vietnam Center and Archive, will be on display October 24-November 14 during the Museum’s normal hours of Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-5pm , as well as on Veterans Day, Monday, November 11th.

For more information on the exhibit and on the Texas Capitol Vietnam Veterans Monument, visit buildthemonument.org

Members of the Patriot Guard Riders move the exhibit crates into the Museum

One of the seven panels of names


A few of the 3,417 dog tags

The Patriot Guard Riders help assemble the exhibit


Monday, October 21, 2013

Reminder: Ambassador Sichan Siv Lecture this Thursday

Ambassador Sichan Siv will be speaking this Thursday at 7:00pm in the International Cultural Center on the Texas Tech Campus.  Admission is free and open to the public.

The mission of the Vietnam Center and Archive Guest Lecture Series is to enrich the intellectual and cultural life of students, faculty, and the community at large by bringing distinguished individuals to campus for presentations on specific aspects of the Vietnam War, its lasting impact on American politics, society and culture, and on contemporary issues in Southeast Asia.

This lecture series is funded in part by a generous grant from the Helen Jones Foundation.  For more information on the 2012 VNCA Guest Lecture Series or about Rocky Bleier see http://www.vietnam.ttu.edu/GLS.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Guest Lecture Series Presents Ambassador Sichan Siv

The Vietnam Center and Archive is proud to present Ambassador Sichan Siv on Thursday, October 24th at 7:00pm at the International Cultural Center on the TTU Campus.  The lecture is free and open to the public.

Sichan Siv escaped the Cambodian killing fields in 1976, resettling in Connecticut. From 1989-1993, Siv served as a Deputy Assistant to President George H.W. Bush, and as a Deputy Assistant Secretary in the State Department. In 2001, he was confirmed as the US Ambassador to the United Nations, a position he held until 2006. His is the author of two books: Golden Bones and Golden Words. A book signing will follow his lecture.

This is the fourth lecture in the Vietnam Center and Archive 2013 Guest Lecture Series.  All lectures are free and open to the public.

The mission of the Vietnam Center and Archive Guest Lecture Series is to enrich the intellectual and cultural life of students, faculty, and the community at large by bringing distinguished individuals to campus for presentations on specific aspects of the Vietnam War, its lasting impact on American politics, society and culture, and on contemporary issues in Southeast Asia.

This lecture series is funded in part by a generous grant from the Helen Jones Foundation.  For more information on the 2013 VNCA Guest Lecture Series see http://www.vietnam.ttu.edu/GLS, or contact Mary Saffell at 806-742-9010 or mary.saffell@ttu.edu.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Staff Departure – Mary Saffell

As many of you may have already heard, longtime Associate Director and Archivist Mary Saffell has accepted the position of Senior Archivist/University Archivist with Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, beginning in October.  Mary joined the Vietnam Center and Archive in the spring of 2002 and has been instrumental in the growth the Archive has experienced over the last decade, as well as the development of the Virtual Vietnam Archive.

During her time with the VNCA, Mary has been a part of a significant number of wide-ranging projects.  She has received grants for and directed numerous archival projects, starting with a project to preserve the film “Dong Tam Base Camp,” part of the William Foulke Collection.  In 2005 Mary applied for a grant through the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) to process the Families of Vietnamese Political Prisoners Association/Vietnamese American Heritage Foundation (FVPPA/VAHF) collection.  This grant was awarded in 2006 and led to the creation of the Vietnamese American Heritage Project at the Archive, as well as an additional NHPRC grant (currently ongoing) to digitize this invaluable collection.  In 2011  Mary, along with current Assistant Archivist Amy Mondt, and the VNCA’s former Communications Coordinator Victoria Lovelady, initiated the VNCA’s Guest Lecture Series, which to date has brought 14 speakers to Lubbock and will continue this fall with two additional speakers, and four speakers planned for 2014.

These are just a few of the many things Mary has been a part of during her nearly twelve years with the Vietnam Center and Archive.  She has played a vital role with the VNCA and will be greatly missed.  We wish her the best of luck in Fort Worth!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Watch Online: The VNCA 2013 Conference, Vietnam, 1963

The Vietnam Center and Archive’s 2013 Conference focusing on Vietnam in the year 1963 is currently underway.  You can watch the conference online through the US National Archive’s Ustream channel: http://www.ustream.tv/usnationalarchives

If you are in the DC area, there is still time to join us.  This free conference continues until 5pm today, and starts again on Saturday at 8:30am.  For more information on the conference and panelists, visit www.vietnam.ttu.edu/conference.htm

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ready for takeoff! Vietnam: The Helicopter War exhibit

 

U.S. Art Company load
Vietnam: The Helicopter exhibit

The Vietnam Center and Archive is proud to announce that the Vietnam: The Helicopter War exhibit is on its way to Australia.

The National VietnamVeterans Museumin Phillip Island, Australia, island just south of Melbourne, Victoria, will host the exhibit starting November 17th 2013 and ending January 26th 2014.

In the summer of 2013, the exhibit was on display in Lubbock’s Silent Wings Museum for the first time. Then, it was displayed in Midland,Texas. And now, a year from its creation, the exhibit will be available to the Australian public.

Friday, September 20, 2013

National POW/MIA Recognition Day

The third Friday in September is National POW/MIA Recognition Day. There are 83,343 Americans listed as MIA since WWII, including 1,644 from the Vietnam War. Please take a moment today to remember those who are still missing from the Vietnam War and all other wars.

To learn more about efforts to account for and recover all of our missing personnel, visit the Defense Prisoner of War Missing Personnel Office (DPMO), or this lecture by Major General (Ret) W Montague Winfield, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for POW/Missing Personnel Affairs and Director of the Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office, who spoke as part of the Vietnam Center and Archive Guest Lecture Series earlier this year.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Happy Mid-Autumn Moon Festival 2013

Vietnam Center Collection. Unicorn paper mache mask.

Thursday, September 19th marks the Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon or Full Moon Festival. Traditionally celebrated on the fifteenth day of the eighth month of the lunar calendar, when the moon appears larger than it does on any other night of the year, the Mid Autumn Moon Festival (Tet Trung Thu) is the second biggest holiday in Vietnam and is widely celebrated throughout Asia.

 

Kathryn Campbell Collection. 8 year old Thi Thi Bich Nhi blends Vietnamese and Chinese legend in her drawing titled, Chi Hang (The Moon Goddess). She depicts both the Vietnamese man in the moon, Chu Cuoi, and the Chinese woman in the moon associated with the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.

 

It is a time for family and to celebrate life, prosperity, and the harvest. During the Mid-Autumn festival, parents prepare their children’s favorite dishes and buy them new toys. Children hear the story of Chu Cuoi (the man in the moon) and other fairytales.

Douglas Pike Photograph Collection
Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration – “Moon Men” – Enterprising merchant in Saigon uses display of Lunar Astronauts to call attention to “Moon Cakes,” a traditional delicacy sold during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Hanging and floating lanterns are set out to decorate and people dance the lion and dragon dances. Mooncakes (made from lotus seed, ground beans, and containing a bright salted egg yolk in the center) are given to family and friends.

Ogden Williams Collection USOM/Office of Rural Affairs

Pomelo fruit and watermelon seeds are a special treat. At night children parade through the streets to the beat of drums wearing Paper Mache masks and carrying lanterns in the shapes of stars, rabbit heads, fish (carpe), butterflies, or lanterns with a lit candle inside that makes shapes spin representing the seasonal spinning of the earth.

Vietnam Center Collection. Paper mache mask.

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