Western historians became interested in the pre-history of Viet Nam around the turn of the 20th century. Their early studies theorized that ancient civilization of South East Asia, especially Viet Nam, was a product of Chinese and Indian cultures as their cultural influence expanded southward and eastward, hence the region was named Indo-China. But in the past 40 years, Vietnamese archaeologists have brought to light significant information to present a more logical and coherent view of the pre-historic Viet Nam. Based on recent excavations and surveys, Vietnamese historians have established a chronology of cultures originated in the Hong (Red) River valley from the Paleolithic Age to the Neolithic Age through the Son Vi, Hoa Binh, Bac Son, Quynh Van, Da But, Phung Nguyen, Dong Dau and Go Mun culture. The Dong Son culture culminated the Bronze Age and the opening stage of the Iron Age. This culture represented the peak of the ancient civilization of Viet Nam and the beginning formation of Van Lang/Au Lac, the first unified nation under the Hu`ng kingdom.

Drum Hoang Ha: The Bronze Dong Son Drums