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National Vietnam Veterans museum - Phillip Island

Discussion in 'The Pub' at netrider.net.au started by I Adore Vic, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. Hey all. As part of my studies I had to visit an information agency and I decided my agency of choice would be the Vietnam Veterans museum on Philllip Island, mainly for location (close to me) but also because I've been curious to have a look in there for some time now. The fact they have a research library also got my attention. :)

    Link to the museum:


    I didn't really know what to expect when I entered. As a student I was at first able to spend time with staff looking at the behind the scenes stuff to do wtih the library and the museum's exhibits, and then I was able to roam free.

    I started with the holographic light show (and I recommend you do the same). This is set up in a 'makeshift' canvas tent complete with a sandbag lined walkway which leads us to a seating area. A 20cm high commentator talks us through the history of the war. After watching the 20min show I can understand why the museum keeps a box of tissues in there. It must be especially confronting to the diggers and their families.

    Holographic light show:

    The museum holds a large array of vehicles and aircrat including a 54 tonne Centurion tank and a rather stunning Bell Huey Cobra helicopter gunship.

    The museum has in its collection over 6000 items, and every single one of those items has been donated. There are also a large amt of photographs on display - and it's these which personalise the war - for me anyway.

    All your typical items you'd expect to find are there - armoury, uniforms, badges, maps, flags, dioramas, models, memorials, art, typical soldier's items, communication devices, newspaper clippings etc etc.

    The museum receives no ongoing govt funding and is run entirely by volunteers. Even the head librarian is a volunteer and she and the others who are aiding her have their work cut out for them as atm they are busy cataloguing every item in the collection and library. Not a simple task (as I'm learning with one of my subjects, Cataloguing procedures- I'm trying not to hate it!). They also hope to digitise much of their library collections (amongst other things they have personnel records and a plethora of information on agent orange). If you're looking at doing any research on the Vietnam War, I recommend this place as your first stop.

    I didn't post my report up as I'm yet to write it out - but I did want to put something up here about it. I understand that there are a few Vietnam vets out there who ride (3 turned up on bikes whilst I was there) plus I know a fair few of you head down to the Island every now and then :)

    If you get a chance, drop in there for a look. And chuck them a few dollars more than the door entry ;)

    Oh...and guess who's found her preferred place for work placement next yr. :)
  2. Oh Rosie in your last sentence you put what I was going to suggest
    you could also offer to volunteer to help with the cataloging as well, I found learning it while doing something that you feel with your heart helps alot. I did it with the national musuem in Darwin with the bombing of Darwin stuff.

    We went to the musuem a few years ago now and I think they have moved location since then?? or they were looking for bigger premises.
    but regardless its an awesome place and yes, very confrontational and heartwrenching.
    Oh thats right we went down when Iraq first happened this time around.
    not long after Phil got spat on when he had his uniform on.............. :evil:

    good on you mate for posting about it and increasing awareness of it, its an awesome place that needs to be kept going.

    Phil spent way too much time out with the vehicles outside :LOL: