Vietnam Veterans Memorial

A site for remembrance and reflection.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is one of the most somber places on the National Mall. Two walls of polished black granite are sunken into the earth, etched with the 58,274 names of the missing or deceased are simple components of the Memorial, dedicated in 1982.

The design of the memorial was chosen during a national design competition in 1980. The winner, Maya Lin, was an undergraduate at Yale University who created the design for a funerary architecture class. Lin's statement with her submission of the winning design describes the concept as "a moving composition to be understood as we move into and out of it." 

In 1984 an American flag and a sculpture of “Three Servicemen” was added and in 1993 the Women’s Memorial was included, honoring women who served in the war. 

The Trust for the National Mall's reimagining of Constitution Gardens will provide convenient pedestrian circulations connecting the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to Constitution Gardens and other sites on America's Front Yard. More importantly, the redesigned Constitution Gardens will provide a place of reflection and relaxation, as visitors travel from one memorial to the next. 

A veteran touches "The Wall." (Photo / #MyMallMemories Contest)

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is open 24 hours a day. The memorial is lit at night. National Park Service Rangers and volunteers are available throughout the day and into the evening to assist visitors. The visitor contact station is between the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and Lincoln Memorial.