February 15, 2021 – There has been no more noble fight in all of history than the one guaranteeing equal rights for formerly enslaved people. So how did America forget the Black congressman and a Civil War veteran president to ensure that all those Union soldiers hadn’t died in vain — and more importantly, that the words on those Reconstruction Era amendments to the Constitution guaranteeing rights to the freedmen, wer...

  February 8, 2012 – The U.S. Navy builds modern marvels: 100,000-ton hunks of metal that glide across the ocean rather than sinking like rocks. But how do they do it? The short answer is “computers.” But it was Raye Montague who first designed a ship with that technology, doing so as a single mother during the height of the Cold War, and as a Black woman born into the segregated Little Rock of 1935. She literally let no...

  January 25, 2021 – When George Washington accepted the responsibility of being the first president of a new nation, he felt the weight of history on his broad shoulders, knowing that every step he took, would set precedents for generations. So, how did he pick a team of advisers to keep his path straight on the long march to nationhood? We explore how he pioneered the presidential cabinet with Dr. Lindsay M. Chervinsky. She’...

January 11, 2021 – In 2017, Sports Illustrated named Mike “Doc” Emrick the greatest sportscaster of all time. But how did a kid from a tiny town in the American Midwest, grow up to be a voice synonymous with Canada’s game, the first media member inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, a TV heavyweight, and the winner of eight Sports Emmys? How did Doc sound just as excited about the 10,000th goal he saw, as he did w...

   December 28, 2020 – What’s it like being the great-grandson of one of the greatest leaders of the 20th Century, the man called “the Greatest Briton”? In this episode, we pay tribute to Jonathan Sandys, Winston Churchill’s great-grandson, who passed away at just 43 years old on December 29, 2018. With the two-year remembrance upon us, we reached back into the archives to share a speech he delivered to the ...

  December 14, 2020 – In 1880, Maria Longworth Nichols Storer founded Rookwood Pottery in Cincinnati, aiming to give American artists a place to produce quality pieces to beautify the home, but also practical ceramics and tile. It grew into a world-renowned success, one that endures to this day. Spinning the pottery wheel for us is Bob Batchelor who brings us the illustrated history Rookwood: The Rediscovery and Revival of an Americ...

November 30, 2020 -What are your favorite stories from growing up? Well, make room on your bookshelf for the chickens who dreamed of speaking Yiddish. We dive into a treasure trove of children’s literature, brought together here for the first time by Miriam Udel. Her book is Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature.  Perfect for anyone on your Hanukah or Christmas list. That’s right. Santa can clean out ...

November 16, 2020 – “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” The phrase is the stuff of legend, but who wrote that memorable lyric? In this episode, we meet the street poet with a heart of gold, Drew “Bundini” Brown, Jr., one of boxing’s most mysterious and misunderstood figures — and the one who motivated Muhammad Ali to be the greatest. Join us in the corner of Sugar Ray Robinson and the young Cassius C...

November 2, 2020 – One of Europe’s greatest monsters. One of America’s greatest presidents. We’ll dig into the parallel paths that led these men and their nations to very different final destinations with renowned historian David Pietrusza. We sat down at the FDR Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, N.Y., to discuss his book 1932: The Rise of Hitler and FDR ―Two Tales of Politics, Betrayal, and Unlikely Destiny...

October 19, 2020 – In 1887, the New York World newspaper laughed off 23-year-old Elizabeth Cochrane’s dreams of being a reporter. Today, she’s a New York City legend, known to history by the pen name Nellie Bly. But to sew up that dream job, Nellie had to go undercover in the closest thing Gilded Age Gotham had to hell: The asylums of Blackwell’s Island on the East River. Tonya Mitchell brings us a meticulously research...

October 5, 2020 – In 1881, an assassin shot President James A. Garfield just four months into his term, ending this noble leader’s plans for carrying out Abraham Lincoln’s legacy of equality for formerly enslaved Americans. But how did he get into the big chair? Our time machine heads into the hurly burley of the 1880 election, the only time two Civil War veterans faced off across the Mason-Dixon line of politics. It’s ...

September 21, 2020 – The Great War is over, but the Spanish Influenza continues to deliver the butcher’s bill. Everywhere, children are dying. But in Philadelphia, they’re also disappearing — and they all have one thing in common: They’re immigrants. We dive into a riveting novel set 100 years ago that’s eerily familiar today with acclaimed novelist Ellen Marie Wiseman. She brings us The Orphan Collector, a ...

Sep 7, 2020 – On September 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda sought to break the American union, aiming at what they saw as fatal flaws in our democratic system. Two decades later, the man who was governor of the Empire State on that day of infamy dares to ask, “Did the terrorists win?” In this episode, the 53rd governor of New York, George E. Pataki, joins us to discuss Beyond the Great Divide: How a Nation Became a Neighborhood, co-author...

Aug 24, 2020 – What if your grandparents had narrowly escaped a genocide that left one million people dead, just because they shared your faith and ethnic background? That’s part of the Karayanis family story, in the mass murder of Greeks by Ottoman Turkey that followed the Great War. Our guide back to the 20th Century’s first genocide, is Greek-Australian Aris Tsifidis, who brings us The Genocide of the Greeks in Turkey: Sur...

August 10, 2020 – Lizzie Borden has been testified against by generations of children in a nursery rhyme, and continually convicted in the court of public opinion. But did she swing the axe that whacked her parents, or didn’t she? We dig into the 1893 murder trial with first-time author Cara Robertson. She brings us The Trial of Lizzie Borden: A True Story. Based on transcripts of the proceedings, newspaper accounts, unpublished re...

INTERVIEWS

H5F: Rick Perlstein – The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan

Jun 3, 2016 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster — check them out at Facebook.com/HistoryInFive. ` This coming Sunday, June 5th, America will mark the anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s death in 2004 at the age of 93. Rick Perlstein — best-selling author of Nixonland — looks at how the destruction of the Watergate scandal shook America to its foundations, and seemed to create a ne...

Harriet F. Senie – Memorials to Shattered Myths

May 30, 2016 – In this episode, we’re going to cast our eyes back at how we memorialize those we lose in wars, tragedies, terrorist attacks and public outrages. It’s a delicate topic, but we owe it to people who’ve lost their lives to get it right. Our guest is Harriet F. Senie, author of Memorials to Shattered Myths: Vietnam to 9/11. Professor Senie is Director of the M.A. Program in Art History and Art Museu...

H5F: Sidney Blumenthal – A Self-Made Man: The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln

May 27, 2016 –  It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster — check them out at Facebook.com/HistoryInFive. While it’s no secret that Abraham Lincoln didn’t have an idyllic childhood, today’s guest — journalist and political aide Sidney Blumenthal — noticed something in particular about young Lincoln’s experience that might have impacted the way he perceived and spoke about slavery. Blumenth...

Lynn Sherr – Sally Ride: America’s First Woman in Space

May 23, 2016 – Lynn Sherr’s book is titled: Sally Ride: America’s First Woman in Space. It includes unique insights from her friendship with the astronaut, tennis player, astrophysicist, children’s book author, and genuine American legend, as well as exclusives from Dr. Ride’s family, partner, and countless friends and colleagues. You can enjoy more from our guest @LynnSherr on Twitter, or Facebook.com/S...

H5F: Lynn Sherr – Space Pioneer Sally Ride

May 20, 2016 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster. Today, journalist Lynn Sherr turns our time machine into a rocket ship to shatter the glass ceiling. Her new book is Sally Ride: America’s First Woman in Space.  You can enjoy our full interview here.  It’s the remarkable story of humanity’s first baby steps beyond earth with Sputnik, to the Space Shuttle and I.S.S.  You can follow today&...

Betsy Harvey Kraft – The Fantastic Ferris Wheel

May 16, 2016 – Our time machine drops us off in December 1892, during the planning for Chicago’s Columbian Exposition — a forerunner of the 20th Century world’s fairs — with the perfect story for the boardwalks and carnivals of Summer 2016. At the ticket booth is Betsy Harvey Kraft, and she’s sharing The Fantastic Ferris Wheel: The Story of Inventor George Ferris. You may have seen her several othe...

H5F: Meet the Spymasters of the OSS

It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster. Our guest is Douglas C. Waller, sharing some insight on several CIA Directors who had previously worked for William “Wild Bill” Donovan’s spy agency, Office of Strategic Services. Waller’s books related to this subject are Disciples: The World War II Missions of the CIA Directors Who Fought For Wild Bill Donovan and the New York Times bestselling biography Wild Bill Dono...

Feather Foster — Mary Lincoln’s Flannel Pajamas

May 9, 2016 – In this episode, our time machine door opens into the wardrobe of our First Ladies, that Narnia of fashion that trends back to the very first days of our republic, when the role of the president’s wife had — like the role of the president himself — yet to be defined. Our valet is Feather Schwartz Foster, a presidential historian who focuses on our First Ladies from Martha Washington to Mamie Eise...

H5F: Edward Brooke-Hitching – Fox Tossing, Octopus Wrestling and Other Forgotten Sports

May 6, 2016 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster. Our guest is Edward Brooke-Hitching, and his book is the quirky Fox Tossing, Octopus Wrestling and Other Forgotten Sports. From Flagpole Sitting (can’t imagine why it ever fell out of fashion) to Hot Cockles, time-travel through the most curious, dangerous and downright bizarre sports and pastimes that mankind has ever devised, tried, and realiz...

Michael J. Tougias – So Close to Home

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 se...

Good Friday! It’s Eastern Orthodox Easter

April 29, 2016 – This weekend, the Greek and Eastern Orthodox Churches take us back in time to the early days of the church, when Christ’s resurrection was celebrated after Passover in order to be historically sequential. After all, the Last Supper was a Passover Seder — which some of you might have celebrated a few days ago. This special episode is presented by Luke Historians, and features excerpts from Dan Arsenault’s ...

Daniel L. Mallock – Agony and Eloquence

April 25, 2016 – In this episode, we’ll step through the Guardian of Forever and meet two founding fathers who were best friends, then bitter enemies, and finally friends again: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the second and third presidents of the United States, and the first and second vice presidents. Our guide on this journey is Daniel L. Mallock, and his book is Agony and Eloquence: John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and...

H5F: Doris Kearns Goodwin – Theodore Roosevelt’s “Wild” Fitness Regime

April 22, 2016 – Today popular historian and frequent TV news guest, Doris Kearns Goodwin discusses how Theodore Roosevelt overcame serious ailments as a child to become one of our nation’s most active, vigorous presidents. The insight comes in her latest book, titled, The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism. She previously touched on the extended Roosevelt family twenty...

Eric Nelsen – The Kearney House

April 18, 2016 – Today, we’re traveling back in time by rappelling down the steep face of New Jersey’s Palisades Cliffs, and down to the Alpine Boat Basin, just north of the George Washington Bridge. Our destination is the historic The Kearney House, formerly called the Cornwallis Headquarters, based on the local legend that the British general stopped here for a night during the American Revolution. The Kearney Hou...

H5F: Fergus Bordewich – The First Congress

April 15, 2016 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster. Our guest is Fergus Bordewich , and his book is, The First Congress: How James Madison, George Washington, and a Group of Extraordinary Men Invented the Government. It’s the monumental story of the most productive Congress in US history, in 1789–1791, which we first explored with Fergus in our recent interview, which you can still find at HistoryAu...