History Author Show

History Author Show

We've all been transported into the past by a special book, place or person. On the History Author Show, host Dean Karayanis and a team of correspondents bring you the people who build the time machines.... Show More

Episodes

July 26, 2020 60 min
July 27, 2020 - Video killed the radio star, and the talkies killed Vaudeville, but some legends adapt to changing times. In this episode, we meet one such innovator, who made a series of leaps from New York City's Hippodrome to Hollywood, with many entertaining stops and in between.

Born in the San Francisco of 1883 as Katherine Gertrude Hay, Gertrude Hoffman broke into show business as a mimic, copying highbrow performances fr...
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July 13, 2020 - He's the ultimate Civil War baby gone bad, born in 1866 with the modest handle of Robert Leroy Parker. So how did that dirt-poor son of a Mormon farmer grow up into a horse thief, rustler, and bank robber who ran with the Wild Bunch? Charles Leerhsen explores the origin story of a famous outlaw who never killed a soul in Butch Cassidy: The True Story of an American Outlaw.

If you're familiar with sensationali...
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June 29, 2020 - Doctor. Major General. Hero of the American Revolution. Martyr who spilled his lifeblood fighting the British at Bunker Hill. And yet most of us have never heard of him.

Our guide on this journey is Christian Di Spigna, who brings us Founding Martyr: The Life and Death of Dr. Joseph Warren, the American Revolution's Lost Hero. Christian Di Spigna is a regular speaker and volunteer at Colonial Williamsburg, and an...
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June 15, 2020 - Investigative journalist and attorney Gerald Posner shares the highpoints of the pharmaceutical industry's transformational successes, as well the moments they'd prefer to keep buried. We go along for the ride in his latest book, Pharma: Greed, Lies, and the Poisoning of America. It's a page-turning journey to meet the scientists whose successes have improved the lives of every human being on earth, and ...
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June 1, 2020 - Meet the commanders who led America to Victory in mankind's most terrible conflict before they had stars on their shoulders. Our guide on this journey is 82nd Airborne veteran and paratrooper Benjamin Runkle. He brings us Generals in the Making: How Marshall, Eisenhower, Patton, and Their Peers Became the Commanders Who Won World War II.

It's the first comprehensive history of these men during the interwar yea...
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May 18, 2020 - In an iconic, ad-libbed moment at the old Yankee Stadium, a terminally ill baseball player declared himself "the luckiest man on the face of the earth." A decade earlier, he'd sat down to write the remarkable story of his career in newspaper columns that remained buried for almost a century -- until now. In Lou Gehrig: The Lost Memoir, we meet Major League Baseball's most triumphant and tragic slugger...
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May 4, 2020 - What if a former U.S. congressman told you he had a secret about the most infamous presidential assassination, but died before revealing it? It's a turn-of-the-century whodunit, courtesy of historian David O. Stewart's novel, The Lincoln Deception (A Fraser and Cook Historical Mystery).

His Holmes and Watson team features the white Dr. Jamie Fraser, and African-American former baseball player, Speedwell Cook. W...
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April 20, 2020 - In 1863, the Confederate States held a last stronghold on the Mississippi River: Vicksburg. Losing it, and the slavocracy would be sliced in half, mortally wounding their cause. Donald L. Miller musters us into the Grand Army of the Republic's campaign to capture this city on its high bluff in Vicksburg: Grant's Campaign That Broke the Confederacy.

Donald L. Miller is the John Henry MacCracken Professor of H...
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April 5, 2020 80 min
April 6, 2020 - Pack your full-body swimsuit, everybody. We're headed for Coney Island in the summer of 1911, where we'll meet a young heiress, Peggy Batternberg. Peggy falls in love, dives into the seedy world where the other half lives, and stumbles upon the mystery of young women found murdered under the boardwalk.

Our time machine travels back to America's Playground, Coney Island, Brooklyn, with "writer, editor,...
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March 23, 2020 - Adolf Hitler ... had a need for speed. After all, it was the key feature in blitzkrieg, lightning war. So the Nazis poured resources into developing the fastest engines, sleekest race cars, and best drivers. Who dared stand against them? We'll meet the Jewish driver who took on these would-be Aryan supermen in Faster: How a Jewish Driver, an American Heiress, and a Legendary Car Beat Hitler’s Best.

For this jour...
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March 9, 2020 - Jerry Mitchell joins us with Race Against Time: A Reporter Reopens the Unsolved Murder Cases of the Civil Rights Era.  In addition to what we today know as the Mississippi Burning case, this unique memoir covers our guest's efforts in the assassination of Medgar Evers, the 16th Street Church bombing, and the firebombing of Vernon Dahmer.

By refusing to ignore pleas for justice when everyone else had given up hope...
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February 24, 2020 69 min
February 24, 2020 - What if the Revolution sparked in 1776 had collapsed? In this episode, our time machine travels back to the last days of the American Revolution, to track down rumors of an unthinkable plot by the Continental Army to mutiny over lack of pay. Only George Washington stood against the passions of men that may have included such patriots Alexander Hamilton and James Madison?

Infiltrating the plot against the governme...
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February 10, 2020 - Recorded live at the FDR Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York, our time machine travels back to the end of the Great War and the dawn of Prohibition. Jazz Age America picks a president, with flappers in all 48 states casting ballots for the first time as a half dozen once and future presidents compete for victory.

They are: Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Herbert Hoove...
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January 27, 2020 - Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Fred Kaplan drops in on the key flashpoints of the Nuclear Age, from Harry S Truman first getting word that the Manhattan Project had birthed its radioactive fruit, to the Cuban Missile Crisis and Reagan's peace offerings to Gorbachev, to modern fears of rogue nations and terrorists gaining access to the ultimate firecrackers.

Fred Kaplan is the national-security point man for...
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January 13, 2019 - Our time machine travels back to the Civil Rights era, to meet a man who fought the racial discrimination of his day on the basketball court, while using his platform to support those battling in courts of law. In the process, he was the first man ever described as a "superstar."

We enjoy this 6' 5"pioneer's story in Elgin Baylor: The Man Who Changed Basketball. Giving us play by play courtside...
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December 16, 2019 - Our time machine travels back to the death throes of the Confederate States of America with New York Times best-selling author and Pulitzer Prize finalist S.C. Gwynne who brings us Hymns of the Republic: The Story of the Final Year of the American Civil War.

Click here for an excerpt -- "Chapter One: The End of Begins."

You can also enjoy our History in Five Friday segment on our guest's previous book,...
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December 2, 2019 - Why would a Gilded Age woman climb the tallest mountains in the world? For the same reason a man would, of course: Because it's there. We meet the pioneer whose ambitions shattered glass ceilings on the very top of the world in Queen of the Mountaineers: The Trailblazing Life of Fanny Bullock Workman.

Our sherpa as we climb through this compelling woman's life is Cathryn J. Prince whose previous books incl...
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November 18, 2019 - What if you woke up to find your 12-year-old daughter dead, and the local police destroyed your house looking for evidence to pin the murder on your innocent son? Attorney Donald E. McInnis introduces us to the real-life family that endured this nightmare in She's So Cold: Murder, Accusations and the System that Devastated a Family.

On a winter day in 1998, the town of Escondido, California, awoke to the terr...
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November 4, 2019 - How did a "spinster" who declared, "I don’t care for children," and called them "little wretches," launch an organization that not only saved millions of them, but changed the way the world treats young people to this day? Clare Mulley returns to introduce us into this enigmatic force for good in The Woman Who Saved the Children: A Biography of Eglantyne Jebb, Founder of Save the Children....
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October 21, 2019 - Our time machine travels back to the Jazz Age, where we'll meet gambling mastermind Arnold Rothstein, whose lust for a sure thing inspired the most audacious and infamous scam in sports history: Fixing the World Series 100 seasons ago.

The Chicago White Sox took a dive on baseball's biggest stage against the Cincinnati Reds in the infamous "Black Sox" Scandal, in a scheme manipulated by A.R. (known...
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