Timothy Boyce – From Day to Day: One Man’s Diary of Survival in Nazi Concentration Camps
WWII / March 27, 2017

March 27, 2017 – This week, our time machine goes inside a succession of Nazi Concentration camps, and views them through the great Norwegian statesman, Odd Nansen. Editing Nansen’s diaries — written painstakingly and smuggled out of the camps — is Timothy J. Boyce, and the resulting book is From Day to Day: One Man’s Diary of Survival in Nazi Concentration Camps. As a friend of Norway’s royal family and son of a prominent anti-Quisling voice, the Gestapo snatched Odd as a hostage in an effort to keep patriot insurgents in check. If you heard my interview with Neal Bascomb, author of The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler’s Atomic Bomb, you know that Norway holds a special place in our hearts, especially as it relates to their valiant resistance during the war.           Podcast: Download (Duration: 1:04:38 — 73.7MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Patricia Posner – The Pharmacist of Auschwitz: The Untold Story
WWII / January 16, 2017

January 16, 2017 – This week, our time machine travels back to one of the past’s darkest corners, to meet Victor Capesius. Before the war, he was a friendly neighborhood druggist in Romania. But as World War Two progressed, this ethnic German rose from anonymity, to infamy, standing at the side of Dr. Josef Mengele, The Angel of Death. Patricia Posner brings us the true tale of this Nazi SS officer in, The Pharmacist of Auschwitz: The Untold Story. Together with her husband, Gerald Posner, our guest has authored 12 nonfiction books including Mengele: The Complete Story, Hitler’s Children, and most recently, God’s Bankers: A History of Money and Power. (Enjoy our interview on that title here.) We also make reference to our chat with Andrew Nagorski about his book, The Nazi Hunters. You can find our guest online at TrishaPosner.com. Her personal Twitter account is @TrishaPosner, and the one for the book is @AuschwitzPharm1.             Podcast: Download (Duration: 1:01:57 — 59.1MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Lt. Jim Downing – The Other Side of Infamy: My Journey Through Pearl Harbor and the World of War
WWII / December 5, 2016

December 5, 2016 – In this episode we meet 103-year-old Lt. Jim Downing, the second-oldest survivor of the Pearl Harbor attack, who will speak at the 75th commemoration in Hawaii on December 7th, 2016. Jim not only witnessed his ship, USS West Virginia, go up in flames on that day of infamy, but he later served in the Korean War, and in 1956 stumbled into the H-Bomb test at Bikini Atoll. A man of great faith and soon to be the oldest male author in the Guinness Book of World Records, Jim Downing is also a spiritual leader with The Navigators, a worldwide Christian ministry. This unique and inspiring veteran joins us to share his memoir, The Other Side of Infamy: My Journey Through Pearl Harbor and the World of War. If you enjoy this first-person account of the war, check out our chat with Roger Boas, who’s a few years short of 100 and a veteran of George S. Patton’s Third Army. He shared many war stories and his struggles to adjust to civilian life in Battle Rattle: A Last Memoir of World War Two.         Podcast: Download (Duration: 42:32 — 97.4MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android |…

Nathan Stoltzfus – Hitler’s Compromises: Coercion and Consensus in Nazi Germany
WWII / November 28, 2016

November 28, 2016 – This week, our time machine touches down during Adolf Hitler’s reign in Germany, to answer a big question: How? How did this failed Austrian painter — a little-noticed corporal in the Great War — persuade the German people in droves to follow him into the abyss of total war? The usual answers are charisma and a ruthless stamping out of domestic dissent. But here on the History author show, we always seek out a fuller picture than we get in most history books. Nathan Stoltzfus does just that, challenging the traditional view of the asparagus sucker’s rise to power in the book, Hitler’s Compromises: Coercion and Consensus in Nazi Germany.  Of course, none of this is to soften the image of Hitler as evil or excuse his crimes, but to give us a deeper understanding about how he seduced a nation. Professor Stoltzfus received his Ph.D. in Modern European history from Harvard in 1993, and is the Dorothy and Jonathan Rintels Professor of Holocaust Studies at Florida State University. His previous books include Social Outsiders in Nazi Germany, and Protest in Hitler’s “National Community” — Popular Unrest and the Nazi Response. You can follow him on…

Andrew Nagorski – The Nazi Hunters
WWII / August 15, 2016

August 15, 2016 – This week, we follow the journey of the men and women who — in the aftermath of World War Two in Europe — dedicated themselves to visiting justice upon Hitler’s Henchmen. Veteran author and foreign correspondent Andrew Nagorski brings us these stories in The Nazi Hunters, stripping away the myths and caricatures of popular fiction. The book is also an implicit call to action, breathing life into the phrase “Never Again,” as the last cogs of the National Socialist Party’s bloody legacy, rust away. You can read his latest articles at AndrewNagorski.com, and check out his previous books. Those include the companion to today’s title, Hitlerland: American Eyewitnesses to the Nazi Rise to Power. You can also follow our guest on Twitter @AndrewNagorski, or like his Facebook page. We also mention the documentary film, Hitler’s Children, which you can check for a look into the legacy of those descended from the Third Reich’s war criminals.           Podcast: Download (Duration: 11:48 — 10.8MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Hildegarde Mahoney – Journey Interrupted: A Family Without a Country in a World at War
WWII / July 25, 2016

July 25, 1016 – This week, Hildegarde Mahoney shares her memoir, Journey Interrupted: A Family Without a Country in a World at War. In 1941, seven-year-old Hillie and her family left home in New York City and set off for their native Germany. They planned to take the safe and scenic route: Across the U.S., the Pacific, and Eurasia via the Trans-Siberian Railway. But then Hitler betrayed his alliance with Stalin, the family found themselves stranded in Yokohama, Japan — and when the empire attacked Pearl Harbor, there was no going back. Today, Hildegarde Mahoney has worn many hats in her life — and one crown. She was Miss Rheingold, 1956. Today, she is the chairman of the Harvard Mahoney Neuroscience Institute. You can sign up for their free, quarterly newsletter right here, and be on the cutting edge of brain science when you or someone you love is impacted. As Mrs. Mahoney says, “No family goes untouched.”         Podcast: Download (Duration: 39:56 — 36.6MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Roger Boas – Battle Rattle: A Last Memoir of World War Two
WWII / July 11, 2016

July 11, 2016 – Today, we travel back in time to World War Two, and hear from a veteran who served on the front lines. Our guest is Roger Boas, and his book is Battle Rattle: A Last Memoir of World War II. It focuses not only on the fighting, but the scars it left on the inside. Roger Boas was born in San Francisco, 1921, so he’s just five years from celebrating his centennial. That long life — denied so many of his generation — has given him time to reflect on the meaning of his four years in uniform, including eleven months fighting in Europe as a field artillery forward observer with Gen. George S. Patton’s Fourth Armored Division. For his service, Roger Boas earned both a Silver Star and a Bronze Star. And raised a Christian Scientist but of Jewish ancestry, he was among the first American soldiers to find and enter a Nazi concentration camp. Experiencing so much brutality left scars on the young Roger Boas. The result, is what we today call Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). But in the Second World War they called it, “battle rattle.” For more of Roger Boas discussing his experiences,…

Neal Bascomb – The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler’s Atomic Bomb
WWII / June 14, 2016

June 20, 2016 – Our Monday, June 20th interview is with award-winning author Neal Bascomb. We’re airing our conversation a few days early because his book — The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler’s Atomic Bomb — is a perfect gift for Father’s Day. If you think the book might be right for Dad, History Author Show listeners can enjoy a free sample chapter of The Winter Fortress right here. Meet the Norwegian patriots — from schoolteachers to plumbers — who dared defy the Nazis, and endured starvation and harsh winter conditions, to deny Hitler the power to rain nuclear fire on London, New York, and other Allied cities. Our thanks to author Jay Atkinson for pointing The Winter Fortress our way. You can listen to our interview with Jay on his book, Massacre on the Merrimack: Hannah Duston’s Captivity and Revenge in Colonial America. You can follow today’s guest on Twitter @NealBascomb, like him at Facebook.com/NealRBascomb, and pay him a visit at NealBascomb.com. So put on your winter camouflage suits, wax up your skis, let’s head back to Nazi-occupied Norway and assault, The Winter Fortress…       Podcast: Download (Duration: 49:25 — 45.2MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts |…

H5F: Andrew Nagorski – Hitlerland, The Nazi Hunters
History in Five , WWII / June 10, 2016

June 10, 2016 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster. Check them out at Facebook.com/HistoryInFive. Today, award-winning journalist and author Andrew Nagorski casts a fresh look back at the great evil of Nazi Germany, in his critically acclaimed Hitlerland, and now on shelves: The Nazi Hunters. How do we deal with the legacy of everyday Germans, who turned to monstrous acts? What do we owe to the World War Two generation and Holocaust survivors as they pass away? And what were the conflicts in vision among those who hunted Nazi war criminals themselves as they conducted their searches? You can follow today’s author on Twitter @AndrewNagorski or visit him at AndrewNagorski.com. History in Five Friday. It’s the perfect way to kick off your modern weekend… with people from the past. Podcast: Download (Duration: 4:06 — 3.7MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Michael J. Tougias – So Close to Home
WWII / May 2, 2016

May 2, 2016 – In this episode, our time machine touches down during the months after Pearl Harbor, as Hitler’s U-boats bring the Second World War to the Gulf of Mexico. On board the doomed steam merchant ship Heredia, we’ll bear witness to disaster with the Downs family, through the eyes of eight-year-old Sonny. We’ll also meet the commanders of two U-Boats, dispatched by Germany’s Admiral Dönitz, and see how they combine their duty to the Reich with offering mercy to survivors of their attacks. Our steward on this journey is Michael J. Tougias, co-author with Alison O’Leary of the book: So Close to Home – A True Story of an American Family’s Fight for Survival During World War II. Mr. Tougias is the New York Times bestselling author and co-author of two dozen books, including The Finest Hours, which served as basis for the Disney movie out in January 2016. He’s also given us Fatal Forecast. Overboard. King Philip’s War, Rescue of the Bounty, and There’s A Porcupine In My Outhouse: The Vermont Misadventures of a Mountain Man Wannabe. You can find him at MichaelTougias.com, or @MichaelTougias on Twitter.     Podcast: Download (Duration: 37:26 — 34.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts |…

Teresa K. Irish – A Thousand Letters Home
WWII / December 7, 2015

December 7, 2015 – On this Pearl Harbor Day, we mark the Japanese attack on Hawaii, and travel back 75 years to meet Aarol W. “Bud” Irish in the European Theater where he fought the Nazis. On the Memorial Day after Bud passed away in 2006, his daughter Teresa opened her father’s mysterious old Army trunk and found stacks and stacks of letters from the front. Through these, she met her father as a young man, and shared him with us in: A Thousand Letters Home. Along with over 100 pictures, the book also includes the responses from Bud’s girl back home — who would eventually become his wife and Teresa’s mother. The book has proved such an inspiration to readers, that Teresa now spends her time doing public speaking on the letters, helping new generations of veterans and their families connect with the trauma that follows when the guns fall silent.  You can learn more at AThousandLettersHome.com and by following Teresa @ThousandLetters on Twitter.     Podcast: Download (Duration: 42:51 — 39.2MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Kermit Roosevelt – Allegiance
Fiction , WWII / November 16, 2015

November 16, 2015 – Today, we travel back 75 years to a dark period of the Second World War. But the battlefield where liberty and tyranny clash isn’t Midway or Normandy Beach. It’s the hallowed halls of the United States Supreme Court. Our guide into this world is Kermit Roosevelt. His novel is Allegiance, a legal thriller built around the internment of Americans with Japanese ancestry — 62% of them American citizens — under Franklin Roosevelt’s infamous Executive Order 9066. Kermit Roosevelt happens to be distantly related to FDR through his great-great grandfather, Theodore Roosevelt. He’s also a constitutional law professor at the University of Pennsylvania, winner of the Philadelphia Athenaeum Literary Award for his previous novel, In the Shadow of the Law, and a former clerk for Supreme Court Justice David Souter. Nelson DeMille wrote, “My favorite World War II historical novel was Herman Wouk’s The Winds of War. Now I have two favorites. Kermit Roosevelt’s Allegiance is an instant classic.” We also mentioned our interview with David O. Stewart, and his book on the Father of the Constitution: Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships That Built America.     Podcast: Download (Duration: 39:39 — 36.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Google…