Ho Chi Minh was the President and Prime Minister of Vietnam for one of the most important periods in the country’s history. He is widely considered to have been one of the most important leaders of the 20th century. Let’s take a look at 10 interesting facts about Ho Chi Minh.
Ho Chi Minh Facts
1. Ho Chi Minh was born in 1890
Ho Chi Minh was born Nguyễn Sinh Cung on May 19, 1890. There has been some dispute over the year of his birth as he used four other years during his lifetime, claiming to have been born in one of 1891, 1892, 1894 and 1895.
Ho Chi Minh was born in the village of Hoàng Trù, which was his mother’s home village. He would grow up in Làng Sen, Kim Liên, Nam Đàn, Nghệ An Province, which was his father’s village. Ho Chi Minh had three siblings.
2. Revolution against the French
With the Second World War close to an end, In August 1945, Ho Chi Minh led his Viet Nimh group against French Colonial Rule. The whole revolution took just over two weeks and Ho Chi Minh declared independence for Vietnam on September 2nd, 1945, an interesting Ho Chi Minh fact.
The Viet Minh struggled to gain the same level of control of the South of Vietnam as they had done in the North, with the south much more politically divided.
3. Ho Chi Minh is seen as one of the most important world leaders of the 20th Century
Not only is he highly praised by communist countries and regimes, but he was also recognized by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most important people of the 20th Century.
There are various monuments erected around the world to him, with several statues being in Moscow and St Petersburg in Russia. He has also been a source of inspiration for many artists and young revolutionaries.
4. Ho Chi Minh was one of the most influential political leaders and thinkers of the 20th century
Ho Chi Minh was one of the most influential political leaders and thinkers of the 20th century. He was a proud believer in the Marxist- Leninist political movement. He was the chairman and first secretary of the Worker’s Party of Vietnam.
An interesting fact about Ho Chi Minh is that he was politically active from a very young age and died as the President of Vietnam. The chain of thought – ‘Ho Chi Minh Thought’ was adopted by the Vietnamese Communist Party in 1991, though, despite the name, it is not necessarily linked to his own chain of thought and tends to lean more towards more Stalinist communism.
5. Ho Chi Minh City
There are many lasting tributes to Ho Chi Minh, but perhaps the most famous of these was the renaming of Saigon to Ho Chi Minh City.
The city is the biggest city in all of Vietnam with around 6.2 million people living there. The city was renamed following the end of the Vietnam war in 1975 when the Communist North took over the city. It is still sometimes referred to as Saigon in conversation. The tradition of naming cities after people is very popular in Vietnam.
6. He was inspired by the Bolshevik Revolution
During his time studying in France, Ho Chi Minh had begun to become more politically active. He had organized a group of Vietnamese immigrants to protest on behalf of the French government in Indochina gave the same rights to the citizens that the leaders have.
He also became incredibly inspired by the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. He would join the communist party in France and would then travel to Moscow three years later. This would inspire him to begin the Vietnamese Nationalist movement.
7. He traveled extensively when he was younger
An interesting fact about Ho Chi Minh is that between the years 1911-1917, Ho Chi Minh traveled the world working on ships. He spent a considerable amount of time in the French city of Marseille and it said that for a few years he lived in New York City and Boston, though, the only proof of this is from letters that he wrote.
Between 1913-1919 it is believed that he spent time working in the UK. He is said to have spent a couple of years working menial jobs in and around the London area.
Following this, he moved to Paris in the year 1919 and spent four years there. These years would be among the most significant of his early life.
8. The Vietnam War with America
The South of Vietnam was partially controlled by the United States and when they refused to hold an election and unite the country, Ho Chi Minh used military intervention to try and bring the South under control.
This led to the Vietnam war, which led to the deaths of millions of Vietnamese people. The North of the country was supported by the Soviet Union and China, while the South was famously supported by the United States.
The war came to an end and the North was victorious in 1975, which was several years after the death of Ho Chi Minh.
9. Work outside of politics
Due to a life of traveling and spending 30 years outside of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh was an incredibly cultured individual. Not only did he work in politics but he also wrote several journals and worked with various newspapers and magazines during his younger years. He also wrote a lot of poetry during his lifetime, an interesting Ho Chi Minh fact.
Living in other countries also meant that Ho Chi Minh was a skilled polyglot. Outside of his native Vietnamese, he could also speak French, Russian, English, and Chinese. He was also said to have been reasonably strong when it came to speaking in Spanish.
10. Ho Chi Minh died in 1969
While the Vietnam war was still continuing, Ho Chi Minh passed away at his home from heart failure on September 2nd, 1969. He was 79 years old at the time of his death.
Ho Chi Minh wanted his ashes to be spread in different parts of Vietnam but instead, his body was embalmed and his body was put on display in a mausoleum in Ba Đình Square in Hanoi, where it still lies today.
Ho Chi Minh’s impact on not just Vietnam, but the rest of the world is undeniable. While he may have passed away in the late 1970s, his impact on Vietnam is still visible today.
I hope that this article on Ho Chi Minh facts was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Historical People Facts Page!