Sunday, February 20, 2011

Vietnamese Boats, Early 1970s

Rob Whitehurst is a tug driver in Louisiana. When serving in Viet Nam from 1970-72, he had the opportunity to observe and photograph hundreds of native boats of all types, on rivers, canals, on the Mekong Delta, and in Saigon Harbor. Here are a few that I particularly like, along with Rob's own captions. (Click any image to enlarge.) 

Fishing near the Kinh Cho Gao, the Rice Market Canal

River packet boat running downstream off of My Tho (Indig.Boats comment: this is very similar to certain Cambodian passenger boats of the present day)

Sculling and Rowing a small river sampan on the Vai Co River

A Hoa Hao Buddhist minaret. There were over 800 of these in the Mekong Delta in 1975. Most are gone today.

Market at Binh Phuc-Nhut Village on Kinh Cho Gao canal.

A girl named Phuong at 14, never smiled more than this, but cheerful and intelligent, always accompanying her mother on the river at Vinh Long

Net fishing on the Rach Ong Chuong, An Giang Province

Waterborne tea-shop, with smiles. (Indig.Boats comment: This one is my favorite.)
For more (there are 199 in all, though not all are boat shots), see Rob's Facebook album. Many thanks for permission to reuse these wonderful photos here. Please note that permission for further reuse is not granted or implied.


  1. Thanks for sharing these..I am suprised that most of my memories of that place and time are in black and white

  2. Hi Richard. I just posted three more images, so you might want to take another look.