This man was to Laos, in many ways, what Ho Chi Minh was to Vietnam or Fidel Casto is to Cuba. Born in 1920, his father was from Vietnam while his mother was Lao. Kaysone Phomvihane became involved with the Indochina freedom struggle while studying law at University in Hanoi during the 1940s. He left college before completing his studies to join the Pathet Lao. In 1955, he was influential in setting up the Lao People's Revolutionary Party (LPRP) at Sam Nuea in northern Laos, and after that was effectively the Pathet Lao leader, although the "Red Prince," Souphanouvong held the position officially. After the Pathet Lao victory, Phomvihane served as prime minister between 1975 and 1991 and president after that until his death in 1992. This museum was opened in 1996 and is made up of his house with a variety of artifacts and objects from his daily life and a museum (about 1km/ 1/2 mile away) built in monumental style with financial assistance from Vietnam. The exterior is designed in traditional Lao style but the interior layout is strongly reminiscent of that of the Ho Chi Minh Museum in Hanoi. There are two stories: the upper story comprises a central statue hall, surrounded by exhibition rooms with dioramas and displays that trace his life and career in the context of the Lao revolutionary history. Outside is a huge bronze statue of the man himself (looking rather self-effacing in a tight-fitting suit) flanked by Soviet-style heroic statues depicting tough revolutionaries doing tough revolutionary things.