The Vietnam Veterans Memorial pays tribute to those who served in the Vietnam War and is one of the most visited attractions in Washington DC. The memorial is a black granite wall inscribed with the names of 58,286 American’s killed or missing in the Vietnam conflict. The veterans names are listed in chronological order of when the casualty occurred and an alphabetical directory helps visitors locate names. Park rangers and volunteers provide educational programs and special events at the memorial.
A life-size bronze statue depicting three young servicemen is located near the Vietnam Memorial Wall. Also nearby, is the Vietnam Women’s Memorial, a sculpture of two women in uniform tending to the wounds of a male soldier while a third woman kneels nearby. Visitors often leave flowers, medals, letters and photos in front of the memorials. The National Park Service collects these offerings and many are displayed at the Smithsonian Museum of American History.
Address: Constitution Avenue and Henry Bacon Dr. NW Washington, DC (202) 634-1568
The closest Metro station is Foggy Bottom
Vietnam Memorial Hours: Open 24 hours, staffed daily 8:00 a.m. to midnight
Building a Vietnam Memorial Visitor and Education Center
Congress has authorized the construction of a Vietnam Memorial Visitors Center on the National Mall in Washington, DC. When completed, the Visitors Center will serve to educate visitors about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Vietnam War and will pay tribute to all of the men and women who served in all of America’s wars. To keep the building from overshadowing the Vietnam Wall or other nearby memorials, it will be built underground. The site of the proposed education center was approved jointly by the National Park Service, on behalf of the Secretary of the Interior, the Commission of Fine Arts, and the National Capital Planning Commission in 2006.
A ceremonial groundbreaking was held in November 2012. The new facility will be built northwest of the Vietnam Memorial Wall and northeast of the Lincoln Memorial, bounded by Constitution Avenue, 23rd Street, and Henry Bacon Drive. The Memorial Fund is still raising funds to build the Visitor Center and no opening date has yet been set. For more information about the funding, or to make a donation, visit www.vvmf.
About the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund
Established in 1979, the Memorial Fund is dedicated to preserving the legacy of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Its most recent initiative is building the Education Center at The Wall. Other Memorial Fund initiatives include educational programs for students and teachers, a traveling Wall replica that honors our nation's veterans and a humanitarian and mine-action program in Vietnam.