Group B — Stilt House and Presidential Palace



Ho Chi Minh: 
Ho Chi Minh started a revolution in Vietnam, and he was one of the leaders and founders of the struggle for independence and territorial integrity for Vietnam. He wrote and read the Declaration of Independence and was the Prime Minister(1945 - 1955) President from 1945 to 1969. He was one of the famous leaders of Vietnam, and a grand mausoleum was built in his honor.
He made many noble contributions to Vietnam. His great efforts led to the independence of Vietnam and also founded the People’s Army of Vietnam. The South capital of Vietnam, Saigon, was renamed to Ho Chi Minh City, in his honor. He made decisions during the Vietnam War that may have saved lives of his people.
Ho Chi Minh was born in 1890 in Hoàng Trù Village, Vietnam, his mother’s hometown. He mastered Chinese writing early in his life, and other than studying, his hobbies were flying kites and fishing. He traveled to various parts of the world, like London, New York and Paris. 
Ho Chi Minh died at 9:47 a.m. on the morning of 2 September 1969, at his home in Hanoi at age 79 from heart failure. His embalmed body is currently on display in a mausoleum in Ba Dinh Square in Hanoi. It was built in August 29, 1975 The mausoleum was inspired by Lenin’s Mausoleum in Moscow but incorporates distinct Vietnamese architectural elements, such as the sloping roof. The exterior is made of gray granite, while the interior is gray, black, and red polished stone. The mausoleum's portico has the words "Chủ tịch Hồ Chí Minh" inscribed across it, meaning "President Ho Chi Minh." 
Presidential palace:
Constructed by Auguste Henri Vildieu, a French architect from Vietnam, the Presidential Palace pointedly European. It was built during 1900 to 1906, it was part of the Ho Chi Minh complex, containing a museum, mausoleum, residences, one-pillar pagoda. During Independence in 1954, Ho Chi Minh did not live in the structure for symbolic reasons, instead he lived in a traditional Vietnamese Stilt House and carp pond on the grounds. His house and the grounds have been made into the Presidential Palace Historical Site in 1975.
 The Palace host government meetings, thus it is not open to public.

Stilt house:

For most of his tenure as President of North Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh lived in a modest stilt house behind the grandiose Presidential Palace.
The President of North Vietnam moved into the small house on May 17, 1958, and lived there until his death in 1969. To this day, the stilt house can be viewed by visitors who want to get a better look at the life of Vietnam's founding father. Official propaganda shows Ho Chi Minh living the simple life even as President, wearing brown cotton clothes and sandals crafted from used car tires, much the same as his fellow countrymen. This was probably not true and made up by the Vietnamese to show that even the ruling people were also feeling the pain.
 The stilt house was constructed in a corner of the Presidential Palace's gardens, in front of a carp pond. The only difference between it and the other stilt houses in the country was that it was much newer and less wore down. But still, it was more of a servant’s quarters than a house for the President.



Reflection:
Today, our tour guide brought us to the Stilt house and Presidential Palace and we felt that the trip was very enriching as he had provided us with tons of information on Vietnam’s history. During the trip, our tour guide brought us around the two places. At the Stilt house,
we saw the house built on stilts which Ho Chin Minh lived in. We learnt that he did not want to have a luxurious life like rich people normally do. He just wanted to live like ordinary people,much the same as his countrymen.
As for the Presidential Palace, we learnt that Ho Chin Minh refused to live in the Presidential Palace but he had still used it to welcome and house state guests or to hold government meetings. We also learnt from the tour guide that the Presidential Palace was built by the French. 
We found these information very interesting and intriguing as we could learn all a different country’s history which we did not know in the past but now, we know. Even though we found the trip tiring, the places we visit were fascinating.

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