Chapter 26. Vietnam Veterans National Memorial

Vietnam Veterans National Memorial

A detail of the Vietnam Veterans National Memorial in the morning. Taken at ISO 500, f/10,1/250 second with a 20mm lens.

Why It's Worth a Photograph

The Vietnam Veterans National Memorial honors members of the U.S. armed forces who died in the Vietnam War. The memorial is at the western end of the National Mall and is a black granite wall that makes a wide V-shape. It is inscribed with the names of over 58,000 men and women who were killed or designated as missing in action.

It has become a tradition that visitors to the memorial will often leave small mementos to those who are remembered on the wall. These items are collected each day by National Park Service Rangers and, if possible, added to an archive kept by the Smithsonian Institution.

The best location from which to photograph the Vietnam Veterans National Memorial: (A) the memorial's walkway. Nearby photo ops: (7) Lincoln Memorial, (12) National World War II Memorial, (27) Washington Monument, and (28) White House and President's Park.

Figure 26.1. The best location from which to photograph the Vietnam Veterans National Memorial: (A) the memorial's walkway. Nearby photo ops: (7) Lincoln Memorial, (12) National World War II Memorial, (27) Washington Monument, and (28) White House and President's Park.

Where Can I Get the Best Shot?

Because of the minimal design of this memorial, the best pictures often come from within the memorial's walkway.

Along the memorial's walkway

At first glance, the walkway of the memorial doesn't seem to offer many ...

Get Photographing Washington, D.C.: Digital Field Guide now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.