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Welcome to the Hmong Archives

Where Collecting and Preserving Hmong Heritage Is A Thing of The Future

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

Theodore Roosevelt
26th President of the United States (1858 - 1919)

Dear Visiting Friend,

Since 1999, Hmong Archives has been collecting and preserving Hmong materials from around the world. Presently we have over 115,000 items of Hmong materials enclosed in our facility. We strongly believe that the preservation of Hmong heritage is an important aspect and missing part in the Hmong community. We realize that without finding a solution to collect and preserve donated cultural artifacts and materials from private individuals, businesses and organizations, Hmong heritage and subsequently our history will be lost to time.

Throughout history, the Hmong have migrated to various parts of the world to escape wars, starvation and persecution in search of a better future that would preserve their way of life. This however, has presented its own set of new challenges. In many respects, it has translated into adapting and assimilating into new cultures and environments. Hmong culture as a result has evolved through its exposure to other people’s cultural beliefs, values, materials, and customs.

But it does not stop there. Many social and technological changes are now taking place in the Hmong communities and so consequently Hmong culture is continuing to evolve. At the present moment, the history of the Hmong is disappearing at an alarming rate. To give you one illustration, within a time span of ten years from now, the younger Hmong generations will no longer remember the experiences of the Hmong in the Vietnam War era. Already, many Hmong kids are demonstrating a lack of knowledge and understanding of why their parents had to come to the United States and what series of tragic historic events took place in Laos to cause such a migration.

In addition, with countries continuously moving toward globalization, the Hmong living in various parts of modern and third world countries are being coerced to adapt and change materialistically and culturally to survive with modernization. With this in mind, it has become evident that without the collection and preservation of Hmong materials, the history of the Hmong and our heritage once again will become lost to time as it has occurred for many generations.

While the future for the Hmong is still unknown and things that exist now may not be around in a couple of years, everything is not at lost - we still have time and there are people like you, who are visiting our website everyday and curious about the Hmong. Even though, your purpose is probably just to research and gather any information about Hmong, we believe that through your curiosity and desire for knowledge, you’re someone who potentially may become a supporter of our organization and help make a difference in shaping the future of the Hmong…and believe us, you can!

Over the years, many of the materials that have been collected and preserved at the Archives have been donated to us by individuals, organizations and businesses who felt they wanted to leave some part of their legacy behind to the future Hmong generations to observe, learn from and cherish.

And through their contributions, we thought you should know that all of our donations we received came to us from people of all walks of life and around the globe. The distances between them range from villages and towns to countries and continents. Yet despite their various locations, they all have one simple thing in common...and that is, they wanted to contribute to preserving Hmong heritage and subsequently our history.

Let us give you a sample of the kinds of things the Archives have collected as of March 31, 2011:

  • Audio (2,172 items) including cassettes and CDs - and 3 phonographs records.

  • Books (5,093 items) - An extensive collection on many subjects about Hmong by scholars from around the world. Currently the Archives has books in over a dozen Hmong scripts and two dozen languages.

  • Card collections of Hmong business/organization cards, postcards, tickets, greeting and many other shore-lived paper materials.

  • Files (84,769 items) and Archival boxes (116) consisting of brochures, pamphlets and photocopied newspaper articles produced about or by Hmong.

  • Maps (746 items) of various parts of the Hmong world, past and present.

  • Object collections of Hmong cultural artifacts such as baskets, musical instruments (i.e. qeej, ncas, raj) , cross-bows, batik tools, costumes, paj ntaub and others.

  • Photographs (10,813 items), especially Vang Xiong's Ban Vinai photos from the 1980s and 1990s.

  • Posters (4,973 items) - children's art work, ads for Hmong concerts, CDs, videos and events.

  • Video collections (2,360 items) which consist of VHS videos and DVDs of Hmong music, fiction and documentaries.

  • Serials (2,995 newspapers and 3,788 periodicals) local, national and some scholarly - from Saint Paul to Paris, Vientiane and Beijing.

  • Works of Art (188 items) collections of Hmong artists' depictions of people and life in paintings, drawings, and sculptures.

So you see, you don’t have to be wealthy or have a large collection of Hmong materials in order to contribute. All you really have to do is donate something Hmong that you have not used for years and are planning to throw away. May we suggest Hmong cassettes, VHS videos, refugee clothes, newspaper (clippings) or church directories? It’s that simple!

In fact there is an even more simpler way you can take part in helping the Hmong Archives collect and preserve the Hmong heritage – that is – by joining us today. There is no money involved. All you have to do is enter your name and email into the boxes below, press “Submit” and your done! – it’s really that simple (no spamming and gimmicks).

Your information will only be used to keep you informed of events and things that are happening at the Archives.

Furthermore, you decide when and how you want to participate or contribute to the Archives. So have courage and take your first step right now to help shape the Hmong future.

Fill The Following Entry And Submit To us.
Name:
Email:
Your Information Will Be Kept Confidential

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Hmong Archives Staff

P. S. Ten years from now, you won’t have to wonder if you have contributed or made a difference in Hmong society, because you will be proud to know that your small support now will go a long way to help Hmong generations of the future.

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