Hoa's parents,Duong Minh Thoi and Ha Thi Ngoc began collecting antiques in the 1930s and supplemented it over subsequent years till they handed over the collection to their daughter in 1976.
After Hoa died in 2006, her husband Huynh Van Nghi wanted to carry out the wish of the parents-in-law to donate the precious collection to the government.
In February 2011, the HCM City People's Committee decided to receive the antiques.
The city's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism established a team to assess the collection, which consists of 3,360 artifacts made of various materials including iron, stone, glass, paper, wood, cloth, ivory, bone, and terra-cotta.
The team said 2,976 items in the collection were antiques dating from 2,500 years ago to the beginning of the 20th century, sourced from Viet Nam and other countries like China, Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, Germany, France and Turkey.
The others are local handicraft items.
Huynh Thi Vinh Mai, a representative of the donar family, said they wanted to have the collection kept in the country for citizens to enjoy and carry out research.
Tran Thi Thuy Phuong, director of the museum, said the collection was invaluable. From a historical standpoint, the collection was "equivalent to a museum", she said.
This is the second time that the museum has received a private collection as donation. Late antique collector Vuong Hong Sen bequeathed his entire property and collection to the museum in 1996.
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