MEMORABILIA OF THE LATE MARTYR - PROFESSOR DUONG QUANG HAM - PRINCIPLE OF PROTECTORATE HIGH SCHOOL (CURRENTLY CHU VAN AN HIGH SCHOOL)
On October 3rd, 2018, Hanoi Museum arranged to receive documents and artifacts donated by organizations and individuals. Included 3 artifacts from the late Professor Duong Quang Ham donated by Duong Quang Ham High School.
These artifacts represented Vietnam literature in 1943; Vietnam History in 1943 and a certificate of marriage in 1938.
Professor Duong Quang Ham grew up in a family with a tradition of Confucianism in Phu Thi Village, Van Giang District, Hung Yen Province. His great-grandfather, Duong Duy Thanh, used to work as a Provincial Education Commissioner in Hanoi. His father Duong Trong Pho, eldest brother Duong Ba Trac joined the Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc movement, and both were exiled to Con Dao.
Family traditions and Confucian habits have deeply influenced generations of descendants in the Duong family. Following his father's example, his eight children all successfully studied and excelled in scientific research, of which three of his children were conferred the title of Professor: Professor Duong Trong Bai, Professor Duong Thi Thoa - Former Director of the Institute for Gender Studies and Professor Duong Thi Cuong - Former Director of the Institute for Child Care and Protection.
After the success of the August Revolution, Professor Duong Quang Ham was appointed as the first Principal of Chu Van An High School. He brought his enthusiasm and talent to the construction of a new revolutionary school and a new democratic education. But on the night of December 19th, 1946, Professor Duong Quang Ham died and his house on Hang Bong Street was burned to ashes by the French, leaving behind his wife and eight children and leaving behind unfinished pages of writing together with manuscripts and books. In 2000, Professor Duong Quang Ham was recognized as a martyr by the country.
The only other remaining memorabilia are 6 photos he took with his wife and eight children. These photos were donated by the son of the late Professor Duong Quang Ham, Mr. Duong Tu Minh, to the Hanoi Museum.
The precious books and certificate of marriage were donated by Mr. Ly Chi Huong (Principal of Duong Quang Ham High School - Hung Yen) to the Hanoi Museum. Speaking at the donation ceremony, Mr. Ly Chi Huong said: "The school is named after the outstanding son of the homeland - Professor Duong Quang Ham. Although still young, he has achieved highly in teaching and learning. These are precious artifacts were donated by Professor Duong Quang Ham's family to the school before. When it was known that the Hanoi Museum was campaigning for donations to exhibit, the school's Board of Directors decided to donate these artifacts to the museum.”
When he was still teaching at the Chu Van An high School, Professor Duong Quang Ham only taught 3 hours of Vietnamese literature a week, because the French thought Vietnamese was just a secondary subject and an unimportant language. But with a profound Confucianism, passionate patriotism, a love of literature, and with the professional conscience of the teacher, young Duong Quang Ham overcame the pressures of the French colonialists to go his own way. With just over 5 years of teaching, he completed the compilation of the book "National Literature", which has become the official textbook in the Vietnamese literature program at French -Vietnamese pedagogical schools and elementary colleges. In 1940, his textbook Vietnamese literature was published, preparing a step for a famous work consisting of two volumes: Vietnam's literary history and Vietnam's literary anthology. These two books are widely considered by the intellectuals of the country as the first literary history of our country. They are elaborately, systematically and scientifically compiled; a set of exemplary textbooks, highly pedagogical, and of great and lasting value.
These artifacts not only testify to an erudite intellectual but also show the national spirit, patriotism and difficulties in the early days of the Vietnamese education. Hanoi Museum would like to thank Duong Quang Ham High School and the family of the late Professor and martyr Duong Quang Ham. Hopefully in the future, Hanoi Museum will continue to receive artifacts for display from heritage lovers.
Mr. Ly Chi Huong (Principal of Duong Quang Ham High School - Hung Yen)
presented artifacts to Mr. Nguyen Tien Da (Director of Hanoi Museum)
Family photo of Professor Duong Quang Ham in 1944
Vietnamese literature in 1943; Vietnamese History in 1943 and certificate of marriage in 1938.
Nguyễn Bá Ánh