In the late 19th century Vietnam became a French colony. However the French took over Vietnam in stages. In 1859 they captured Saigon. Finally in 1883 North and Central Vietnam was forced to become a French protectorate.
The French built infrastructure in Vietnam such as the Saigon to Hanoi railway. They also built roads and bridges. However the building was funded by heavy taxation.
Naturally the Vietnamese wanted independence. The Communists spearheaded the struggle for independence. Ho Chi Minh founded the Revolutionary Youth League from the safety of China in 1925. In 1930 it became the Vietnamese Communist party.
Here's a small collection of beautiful vintage tourism posters in Vietnam from the early 20th century.
(Images: manhhai, via Messy Nessy Chic)