Nguyen Sinh Sac was born in 1862 in Kim Lien village, Nam Dan district, Nghe An province, in central Vietnam. In 1901, he ranked second in a national examination and gained the title “Junior Doctor”. In June, 1906, Sac moved to Hue, the imperial capital in central Vietnam, to serve as a mandarin. In 1917, he was invited by a patriotic landlord to come to Cao Lanh city. Sac accepted. Subsequently, he lived in Hoa An village as a teacher and a herbal doctor until his death in November, 1929, at the age of 67. Sac, a patriotic Confucian scholar, was buried in Hoa An village.
His originally small grave was upgraded to a larger tomb after Vietnam’s Unification Day. Tour guide Huynh Nhu said of Junior Doctor Nguyen Sinh Sac’s relic site, “The Junior Doctor’s tomb was built in 1975 and inaugurated in 1977. The complex includes the tomb, a worshipping area, a replica of Hoa An village, and President Ho Chi Minh’s stilt house, which is a duplicate of the one in Hanoi. In 2010, the relic was expanded to nine hectares.”
Sac’s tomb is tiled with granite. The up-side-down-lotus-shaped roof is embossed with nine dragon heads, representing the Mekong Delta region. In front of the tomb is a giant lotus-shaped incense burner tiled with marble. In its proximity is a star-shaped lotus pond with a seven-meter-high white lotus statue in the middle, which symbolizes the pure, noble life of Junior Doctor Nguyen Sinh Sac.
Hoa An village where Sac lived until his death offers homestay services for visitors who want to experience the old lifestyle.
Tourist Nguyen Thu Lan of Dong Thap province told VOV, “This relic site is beautiful and spacious. Locals are proud that Nguyen Sinh Sac – President Ho Chi Minh’s father – lived here in our homeland.”
The bonsai garden inside the relic site features several rare species donated by pilgrims and planted by state leaders. There are two wood sculptures by artist Le Tri Lien which are recognized as the biggest stump sculptures in Vietnam.
The complex honoring Nguyen Sinh Sac often serves as a venue for Party gatherings, exhibits, conferences, and national celebrations.
Phan Thi Vu Quyen, Director of the complex, said, “The relic site’s managers and the Dong Thap provincial Department of Education and Training have agreed to turn this complex into a venue for history classes and ceremonies for Party and Youth Union membership admission. We have upgraded it for historical and tourism attraction. An exhibition hall will be built inside the complex to feature President Ho Chi Minh’s life and revolutionary career.”
Junior Doctor Nguyen Sinh Sac’s relic site welcomes half a million visitors each year. His death anniversary on the 27th day of the 10th lunar month is officially recognized as a provincial commemoration.
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