The North Korean
War Museum
in time

Development of the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum through the years.

North Korea's War Museum over the years

The Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum is otherwise known as the North Korean War Museum. This Korean War Museum is in Pyongyang, North Korea. It presents the DPRK’s (North Korea’s) point of view and experience during the Korean War. Throughout the decades, the museum has undergone a series of developments and updates.

As well as housing history, the Korean War Museum also has a history of its own.

Today we bring you photos of the North Korean war museum as it has looked over the years.

Let’s take a look throughout its short history!

1953-1974

The North Korean War as first established on 17 August 1953, less than one month after the signing of the Korean War armistice on 27 July. This date is also known as Victory Day in North Korea. It is a national holiday in North Korea.

The original location is different than today. Today, the North Korean War Museum is located in the ‘Sosong’ district of Pyongyang. Previously, it was located in the Haebangsan area of Pyongyang’s Central District.

The 1953 Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum.

There are few images of the original war museum except the tree-lined pathway and ornamental archway at the site’s entrance. At the top of the archway was the engraved emblem of the DPRK. You could also see the name of the museum in Korean with the dates of the Korean War -- 1950 and 1953 -- on either side of the arch. In front of the archway were ornamental columns holding lamps. A statue of a Korean Peoples' Army soldier greeted visitors to the museum.

Both the archway and the museum itself were yellow in color, similar to other 1950’s Soviet-style buildings. Similar to those you can find in Kazakhstan’s Karaganda (also visited by Koryo Tours!).

Today, the area where the original Korean War Museum originally stood is a central government area and off limits to foreigners.

1974-2013

On 11 April 1974, the museum relocated to its current location the Sosong District along the Potong River and greatly expanded in size.

The 1974 Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum.

The new style of the new Korean War Museum building matched the 1970’s neo-classical socialist architecture springing up around the city, such as the Korean Revolution Museum (1972), April 25 Palace of Culture (1974), Mansudae Art Theatre (1976), and the Mansudae Assembly Hall (1984).

The 1974 museum building itself consists of three floors with a basement, connecting to a detached round building containing the Panorama of the Battle of Taejon.

2014-today

In 2013-4, a new building was constructed on what was formerly a wooded portion of the war museum grounds and attached to the panorama of the old museum. The bulk of the 1974 building is currently unoccupied.

The Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum as it appears today.

Recent developments -

2018

In early 2018, the panorama at the top of the North Korean War Museum was refurbished. You can see this hand painted 360 degree panorama display on a tour to the North Korean War Museum. It’s usually shown at the end of the tour, and definitely a highlight for many people!

Download our North Korea Travel Guide where you can find up to date information on the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum. Or, see it for yourself and visit as part of a Koryo Tours group tour or private independent tour throughout the year.

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