Alexandre Yersin's house in Vietnam becomes official historical site

By Bui Toan   March 22, 2023 | 08:57 pm PT
Alexandre Yersin's house in Vietnam becomes official historical site
The restored house of Alexandre Yersin on Hon Ba Mountain, Khanh Hoa Province in central Vietnam. Photo by VnExpress/Nhan Bui
The Vietnam home of Alexandre Yersin, who discovered the bacterium that causes bubonic plague, has been designated a national historic site by the government.

The decision was signed by the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Van Hung on Monday upon a request by the central province of Khanh Hoa's People's Committee.

Yersin, born in 1863, was a Swiss-French physician and bacteriologist who made several significant contributions to the international science world, including the co-discovery of Yersinia pestis, the bacterium responsible for bubonic plague.

In 1914, Yersin centered his studies on Hon Ba Mountain, which is situated between two communes in Khanh Vinh and Cam Lam Districts. On its peaks, Yersin had a weather station built and performed studies on several plants. He also built a wooden house at the location as a place to stay while performing medicinal experiments.

The house was eventually abandoned, and it became dilapidated over time until only the ruins of its foundations remained. In 2004, local Khanh Hoa authorities built a road leading to the top of Hon Ba. The Khanh Hoa Trading and Investment Company then restored Yersin's former home into a memorial house. In 2010, authorities asked the Yasaka Saigon-Nha Trang company to manage and renovate the site.

The restored house, possessing a similar structure to Yersin's actual home, once exhibited images and relics related to Yersin's life and career. However, the relics and photos have currently been removed by the Yasaka Saigon-Nha Trang company for structural restorations of the site.

In 1990, the Alexandre Yersin Library, part of the Nha Trang Pasteur Institute, as well as the Linh Son Pagoda (one of Yersin's former workplaces) and Yersin’s grave site in Cam Lam District, were all recognized as official national historical-cultural sites.

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