Ken Burns: Empire of the Air
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The Ghost Front
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode Six "The Ghost Front" December 1944-March 1945 By December 1944, Americans have become weary of the war their young men have been fighting for three long years; the stream of newspaper headlines telling of new losses and telegrams bearing bad news from the War Department seem endless and unendurable.…
Pride of Our Nation
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode Four "Pride of Our Nation" June 1944-August 1944 By June 1944, there are signs on both sides of the world that the tide of the war is turning. On June 6, 1944 -- D-Day -- in the European Theater, a million and a half Allied troops embark on one…
Ken Burns: The Brooklyn Bridge
Part of the Series: Ken Burns America
The "Great East River Bridge" was the largest bridge of its era, a technical achievement of unparalleled scope, marked by enormous construction problems, equally ingenious solutions and heroic human achievement. In unexpected and wonderful ways, the Brooklyn Bridge captured the imagination of all Americans, and in the process became a…
A Necessary War
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode One "A Necessary War" December 1941-December 1942 After a haunting overview of the Second World War, an epoch of killing that engulfed the world from 1939 to 1945 and cost at least 50 million lives, the inhabitants of four towns -- Mobile, Alabama; Sacramento, California; Waterbury, Connecticut; and Luverne,…
When Things Get Tough
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode Two "When Things Get Tough" January 1943-December 1943 By January 1943, Americans have been at war for more than a year. The Germans, with their vast war machine, still occupy most of Western Europe, and the Allies have not yet been able to agree on a plan or a…
Empire Upon the Trails - 1806 to 1848
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The West
The American realizes that 'Progress is God.' The destiny of the American people is to subdue the continent -- to rush over this vast field to the Pacific Ocean... to change darkness into light and confirm the destiny of the human race... Divine task! Immortal mission! The pioneer army perpetually…
A Strong and Active Faith
Part of the Series: The Roosevelts
"A Strong and Active Faith" 1944-1962 By April of 1944, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt have occupied the White House for more than eleven years. The President is secretly convalescing in South Carolina from a recently diagnosed bout of congestive heart failure while the war rages overseas and his family is…
The Common Cause
Part of the Series: The Roosevelts
"The Common Cause" 1939-1944 By the late summer of 1939, Franklin Delano Roosevelt is halfway through his second term in office. Both he and Eleanor are tired and looking forward to retirement, but when Germany invades Poland on September 2, 1939, everything changes. Although the United States is poorly prepared…
A Deadly Calling
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode Three "A Deadly Calling" November 1943-June 1944 In fall 1943, after almost two years of war, the American public is able to see for the first time the terrible toll the war is taking on its troops when Life publishes a photograph of the bodies of three GIs killed…
FUBAR
Part of the Series: Ken Burns: The War
Episode Five "FUBAR" September 1944-December 1944 By September 1944, in Europe at least, the Allies seem to be moving steadily toward victory. "Militarily," General Dwight Eisenhower's chief of staff tells the press, "this war is over." But in the coming months, on both sides of the world, a generation of…
A Nation of Drunkards
Part of the Series: Prohibition
Americans have argued over alcohol for centuries. Since the early years of the American Republic, drinking has been at least as American as apple pie. As Episode 1: A Nation of Drunkards begins, clergymen, craftsmen and canal-diggers drink. So do the crowds of men who turn out for barn-raisings and…
In The Arena
Part of the Series: The Roosevelts
"In The Arena" 1901-1910 After William McKinley's assassination, Theodore Roosevelt arrives in Washington in 1901 as the youngest President of the United States. He is unwilling to let Congress dictate federal policies and he knows how to use his immense popularity with the press to disseminate his message to the…