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placard, handmade

  • Catalog Number:VIVE 01655
  • Accession Date:2/12/1985
  • Item Summary:Handmade placard dedicated to U.S. Marine Corps Captain (Capt) and Medal of Honor (MoH) recipient James Albert Graham. The placard bears an affixed black & white photocopy of a formal military portrait depicting Capt Graham which lists his hometown as, "ACCOKEEK, MARYLAND". A handwritten inscription upon the placard is headed, "IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF MY FRIEND", is signed, "SEMPER FIDELIS / JACKIE SCHWANER / 26TH MARINES KHE SANH", and reads, "JAMES A. (JIMMY) GRAHAM CAPT. USMC AND TO ALL OF THE MEN OF THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS WHO HAVE GIVEN THEIR LIVES SINCE 10, NOV. 1775. / YOU WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN [...] 21-E-46". The artifact was left at Panel 21E of The Wall by U.S. Marine Corps and Vietnam veteran Jackie Schwaner between November 1984 - February 1985.

print, black & white photographic

  • Catalog Number:VIVE 01771
  • Accession Date:11/12/1985
  • Item Summary:Black & white photographic print. The photo is a formal high school graduation portrait depicting a young, Hispanic-American woman posing in gown & mortarboard. A handwritten inscription at the reverse surface of the print is addressed, "Dear Mike", is signed, " "Elizabeth" [...] Lopez", is dated, "20 Feb. 70", and reads, "It's nice to meet you. / This picture was taken on my Graduation Day April 69. / Good Luck & God Bless you. / Love, (sis)". The artifact was left at The Wall by Elizabeth Lopez between August - November 1985.

print, color photographic


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Photo Credit: Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, Inc.

Photo Credit: Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, Inc.
  • Catalog Number:VIVE 01735
  • Accession Date:11/15/1985
  • Associated Name(s) on The Wall: N/A
  • Item Summary:Color photographic print. An 'in-country' image captured in Vietnam, the photograph depicts the sign in front of the 45th Surgical Hospital (M.U.S.T.) near Tay Ninh, South Vietnam. A handwritten inscription upon the reverse surface of the photo appears to be from an anonymous medical officer or nurse who served at the hospital and is generally addressed to those listed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (VVM). An excerpt from the inscription reads, "We did what we could but it was not enough because I found you here / All of you are not just names on this wall you are alive [...] Your pain is ours. / Please go. / I'll never forget your faces / I can't. / Your [sic] still alive." The artifact was left at The Wall by an anonymous Vietnam veteran in November 1985.
  • Accession Group:VIVE-00016
  • Record Component Qty:1
  • Item Description:COLOR PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINT. THE OBJECT CONSISTS OF A COLOR PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINT (PORTRAIT ORIENTATION) UPON A SQUARE SHAPED SHEET OF WHITE PHOTO PAPER. THE IMAGE AT THE OBVERSE OBJECT SURFACE OF THE PRINT IS AN 'IN-COUNTRY' IMAGE CAPTURED IN VIETNAM WHICH DEPICTS A CIRCULARLY SHAPED, HAND-PAINTED METAL SIGN SUSPENDED BY FOUR (4) GREEN PAINTED METAL LINK CHAINS IN FRONT OF TWO (2) CORRUGATED METAL STRUCTURES UPON WHAT APPEARS TO BE A U.S. MILITARY INSTALLATION. THE SIGN IS DARK GRAY IN COLOR AND BEARS THE LIGHT GRAY GEOGRAPHIC OUTLINE OF THE COUNTRY OF VIETNAM AT THE CENTER. SUPERIMPOSED IN FRONT OF THE GEOGRAPHIC OUTLINE ARE THREE (3) CYLINDRICALLY SHAPED, OD GREEN, MILITARY HOSPITAL STRUCTURES TOPPED WITH RED CROSS MEDICAL FLAGS, EACH TO THE PROPER LEFT-HAND SIDE OF OD GREEN COLORED SUPPORT STRUCTURES AT THE EXTREME PROPER RIGHT-HAND SIDE. THE PHRASE, "45TH SURG. HOSP" IS EXECUTED IN ARCHED, GRAY, BLOCK LETTERING/ARABIC NUMERALS ALONG THE UPPER, CENTER EDGE OF THE SIGN, WHILE THE CORRESPONDING ACRONYM, "M.U.S.T." IS SIMILARLY EXECUTED IN ARCHED, GRAY, BLOCK LETTERING ALONG THE LOWER, CENTER EDGE OF THE SIGN. AT THE REVERSE OBJECT SURFACE OF THE PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINT IS AN INSCRIPTION HANDWRITTEN IN BLUE INK AND CURSIVE SCRIPT. THE INSCRIPTION APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN WRITTEN BY A MEDICAL OFFICER OR NURSE STATIONED AT THE FIELD HOSPITAL, IS GENERALLY ADDRESSED TO THOSE LISTED ON THE VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL (VVM), AND OPENS WITH THE LINES, "WE DID WHAT WE COULD BUT IT WAS NOT ENOUGH BECAUSE I FOUND YOU HERE. / ALL OF YOU ARE NOT JUST NAMES ON THIS WALL YOU ARE ALIVE." IN CONTENT, THE AUTHOR OF THE NOTE AGONIZES THAT, "YOU'RE [sic] BLOODS [sic] ON MY HANDS, YOUR SCREAMS IN MY HEARS, YOUR EYES IN MY SOUL", RECOUNTS LYING TO WOUNDED SERVICE MEMBERS ABOUT THE SURVIVABILITY OF THEIR WOUNDS, AND BEGS FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF THOSE TREATED AT THE HOSPITAL. THE AUTHOR GOES ON TO STATE THAT, "I SEE YOUR FACE IN MY SON", RECALLS THE HOSPITAL'S PATIENTS SPEAKING OF THEIR FAMILIES BACK HOME, AND THEN STATES FLATLY THAT MANY DIED WHILE THE AUTHOR SHOULD HAVE DONE MORE. THE NOTE CLOSES WITH THE LINES, "YOUR PAIN IS OURS. / PLEASE GO. / I'LL NEVER FORGET YOUR FACES / I CAN'T. / YOUR [sic] STILL ALIVE." ACCORDING TO VIVE CATALOG NOTES PREPARED BY MRCE COLLECTIONS STAFF, A NOTE HANDWRITTEN UPON THE ARTIFACT'S PREVIOUS STORAGE ENCLOSURE RECORDED THE COLLECTIONS PHOTOGRAPHY CITATION PERTAINING TO THE ARTIFACT AS FOLLOWS: "X-1875 DISK 3198 #14".
  • Associated Item Text: Text of the visible inscriptions within the photographic image at the obverse object surface and of the handwritten inscriptions upon the reverse object surface is transcribed in full, as follows: [Obverse object surface, visible painted inscriptions] "45TH SURG. HOSP / M.U.S.T." / [Reverse object surface, handwritten inscriptions] "We did what we could but it was not enough because I found you here / All of you are not just names on this wall you are alive. / You're [sic] bloods [sic] on my hands, your screams in my ears, your eyes in my soul. / I told you you'd be alright [sic] but I lied, please forgive me. / I see your face in my son. / I can't bear the thought. / You told me about your wife, your kids your girl your mother. / Then you died. / I should have done more. / Your pain is ours. / Please go. / I'll never forget your faces / I can't. / Your [sic] still alive,"
  • Item Dimensions and Weight:
    • Item Weight: 1.8g
    • Item Length: 8.7cm
    • Item Width: 8.7cm
    • Item Height: N/A
    • Item Depth: N/A
  • Item Notes:ACCORDING TO VIVE CATALOG NOTES PREPARED BY MRCE COLLECTIONS STAFF, A NOTE HANDWRITTEN UPON THE ARTIFACT'S PREVIOUS STORAGE ENCLOSURE RECORDED THE COLLECTIONS PHOTOGRAPHY CITATION PERTAINING TO THE ARTIFACT AS FOLLOWS: "X-1875 DISK 3198 #14".
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Items left at The Wall - The Virtual Collection

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated on November 13, 1982. Shortly thereafter, visitors to the Memorial began leaving items in memoriam to those killed and missing service members listed on The Wall. These artifacts now collectively comprise the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Collection -- a museum collection of more than 400,000 items held in the public trust by the National Park Service. Today, this Collection is among the largest and most actively researched collections in the National Capital Region.

The Collection is jointly curated by National Mall and Memorial Parks and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF). The VVMF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that relies upon public donations to continue its work, and receives no federal funding.