• Our History


  • The Exodus of the Vietnamese people showed their determination to seek freedom by escaping from the brutal Communist Regime that took over the North in 1954, and the South in 1975.

    For over twenty years, the world witnessed two enormous exoduses of the Vietnamese people, who strongly believed that freedom and democracy, and the future of their young generations were worth to exchange their lives with dangers or even death on the escape routes.

    The First Exodus in 1954 drew over one million of the Vietnamese people who flee from the North to the South, where they quickly integrated and soon lived happily in their new “Freedom Land”

    The Second Exodus began after the Fall of South Vietnam Republic on April 30, 1975. Under the new communist regime, thousands of Southern innocent civilians were killed, while others were sent to “New Economic” zones for hard labors. Thousands of public servants and military members were imprisoned or killed in harsh re-educational detention centers all over the country. During this time, people were trying to get out of the country at any cost. Many journeyed through dangerous forests to neighboring countries, like Cambodia and Thailand, while the majority risked their lives on small and perilous boats heading to the open sea, faced with storms, food deprivation, and even pirates in order to reach the shores of other free countries.

    Some were able to make it successfully, while other unfortunate hundreds of thousands perished in the bottom of the ocean. By the late 1990s, refugee camps in Southeast countries were overloaded. The UN Program with Screening and Forced Repatriation Programs forced many Vietnamese boat people to return to Vietnam against their wills. In their efforts to protest these decisions, some hung themselves, and others burned themselves to death because of their desperation for a new life that could not be given to them. Also with help from the US in 1990s, the HO and ODP Programs allowed the departures of approximate 300,000 former SouthVietnamese Military members and their families to resettle in the United States.

    Where do the Vietnamese Refugees come from? Why are they here?

  • Our Collection Includes


    • Fine Arts

    • Artifacts

    • Books

    • Documents

    • Music

    • Photography

    • Video / Film

Preview Our Projects

Artifacts Collection

Artifacts Collection

The Vietnamese Refugee Artifacts Collection project is the most vital to initiate the collection and preservation of the Vietnamese refugees’ heritage consisting of everlasting memories, sentimental items, belonging and escape vehicles, which the refugees carried and used in their unforgettable journey toward freedom.

Oral History

Oral History

Through oral history interviews, we continue to celebrate the experiences of Vietnamese-Americans, who offer their own interpretation of history. These interviews document aspects of the historical experience of Vietnamese refugees, immigration, and settlement, which tend to be missing from other mainstream sources.

Vietnamese Inspiration People

Vietnamese Inspiration People

In order to build and maintain an accurate, current, and complete list of successful Vietnamese in the US and the world.

Boat People Memorial

Boat People Memorial

The Boat People Memorial will list the Vietnamese victims escaped by the sea or walked across the border after 1975

Museum of Vietnamese

Museum of Vietnamese

The VHM Virtual Museum of Vietnamese (VMV) is the largest source of online content and experiences shared by Vietnamese Heritage Museums organizations

Literature Collection

Literature Collection

The VHM Literature Collection is a project researching, collecting, and publishing all manuscripts (books) and documents are published before 1975 under Republic of Vietnam and published outside Vietnam after 1975.

EVENTS


Information on Events that will be of interest to the Vietnamese American Community

Located in the heart of Little Saigon