Shaping of the American Nation Collection

The Phoenix Learning Group
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17 videos in this collection

American Revolution: The Cause of Liberty
Michael Douglas stars as John Laurens in a story based on actual correspondence between John and his father, Henry, who was president of the First Continental Congress. As a patriotic…
American Revolution: The Impossible War
In this sequel to The Cause of Liberty, John Laurens (Michael Douglas) joins the Revolutionary Army while his father, Henry, struggles on the political front as president of the First…
Andrew Carnegie: The Gospel of Wealth
Actor Bramwell Fletcher stars as the paradoxical Andrew Carnegie in a drama that's both a fascinating portrait of the tycoon-philanthropist and an insightful look at the power games of big…
The Civil War: Anguish of Emancipation
This dramatic re-enactment, which centers on the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation, reveals the agonizing dilemmas that confronted Abraham Lincoln as he struggled to resolve the Civil War. "With all…
Civil War: Promise of Reconstruction
What the future would hold for slaves after the Civil War was presaged by the Port Royal "experiment" re-created in this program. Gideonite missionaries set out to educate 7,000 slaves…
The Constitution: The Compromise That Made a Nation
Distinguished actors re-create the tense exchanges between the Colonial leaders who meet in secret sessions in Philadelphia in May of 1789. We are plunged into the passionate arguments -- finally…
The Frontier Experience
The Westward movement -- and a woman's perspective of that movement -- emerges in the dramatic story of Delilah Fowler's first year on the Kansas frontier in 1869. Based on…
George Washington and the Whiskey Rebellion: Testing the Constitution
This program captures the backwoods flavor of a fledgling American nation as the newly formed law of the land, a tax on distilled liquor, meets its first challenge. "Offers a…
The Immigrant Experience: The Long, Long Journey
The hopes and conflicts of all immigrants are seen through the eyes of the boy Janek, and in a warm scene at the program's close, Janek the man looks at…
The Jackson Years: The New Americans
Vivid action dramatizations of episodes in the life of Andrew Jackson are juxtaposed with tableaux from a theater of the day in the story of the boisterous frontier fighter who…
The Jackson Years: Toward Civil War
The forceful personality of Old Hickory (Andrew Jackson) dominates this investigation of the major events of his presidential administration -- South Carolina's threat of succession, Nat Turner's rebellion, and John…
The Lure of Empire
Exploring one of America's most controversial foreign policy decisions -- the annexation of the Philippines -- this program re-creates the agony of self-searching that preceded America's turn toward expansion. "Everyone…
The Masses and the Millionaires
A startlingly realistic program recreates the bloody strike at the Carnegie Street Company in 1892 through the experiences of an Irish labor organizer and a Slav coal heaver. From the…
The Puritan Experience: Forsaking England
Here's a "beautifully photographed, well-edited program which uses the experience of the Higgins family to represent the lives of approximately 20,000 Puritans who, in the 1630s, were so thoroughly harassed…
The Puritan Experience: Making of a New World
This program continues the Higgins' chronicle in Massachusetts. In an ironic twist, the daughter befriends the Indians and community intolerance of unorthodox beliefs forces the family to flee once more.…
A Slave's Story
Based on a slave narrative by William and Ellen Craft. This dramatization of the Crafts' escape from slavery in 1848 follows their perilous journey from the Deep South to Philadelphia--where,…
The Witches of Salem: The Horror and the Hope
Based on historical records, this program shows how the hysterical behavior of a few young girls set off the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692. "Vividly recreated, yet with taste and…

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Shaping of the Western World Collection
Outstanding programs that re-create key episodes of human drama and spectacle in the history of the Western World. The 23 programs in this series, all of feature-film caliber and starring well-known actors, were filmed in actual historical locations around the globe and produced with advice from scholars at leading universities…
George Washington and the Whiskey Rebellion: Testing the Constitution
This program captures the backwoods flavor of a fledgling American nation as the newly formed law of the land, a tax on distilled liquor, meets its first challenge. "Offers a thoughtful portrayal of President Washington that reveals many human aspects of the situation."--American Educational & Historical Film Center. An LCA…
The Lure of Empire - America Debates Imperialism
Exploring one of America's most controversial foreign policy decisions -- the annexation of the Philippines -- this program re-creates the agony of self-searching that preceded America's turn toward expansion. "Everyone who was anyone from 1899 to 1901 is here, from [President] McKinley to Samuel Clemens. Newsreel shots of the Spanish-American…
The Puritan Experience: Forsaking England
Here's a "beautifully photographed, well-edited program which uses the experience of the Higgins family to represent the lives of approximately 20,000 Puritans who, in the 1630s, were so thoroughly harassed by the Church of England that they decided to migrate to the American colonies in hope of finding religious freedom.…
The Witches of Salem: The Horror and the Hope
Based on historical records, this program shows how the hysterical behavior of a few young girls set off the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692. "Vividly recreated, yet with taste and restraint. Students will certainly favor this production. ... with a little imaginative homework, public libraries and church groups will find…
The Middle Ages - A Wanderer's Guide to Life and Letters
Journey into the life and letters of the Middle Ages through the literature of Dante and Chaucer. With the help of an outstanding cast of British actors, part of the morality play Everyman is performed, romance is presented through quotations from Dante's Love Sonnets, and a woman's lot is depicted…
Napoleon - The End of a Dictator
The eternal enigma of the "popular dictator" is the focus of this dramatic reenactment of the emperor's last 100 days in power. Returning from the island of Elba, he once again rallies the French nation which though war-weary, is still haunted by memories of past military glory. In the smoke…
Elizabeth - The Queen Who Shaped an Age
"I am England now ... let that be my life." These words, spoken by the 25-year-old daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn as she ascended the throne, ushered in England's era of glory. Filmed at beautiful Hever Castle (the actual childhood home of Anne Boleyn), this lavish drama features…
Pompeii - Once There Was a City
By juxtaposing life in the ancient city with the quality of life in contemporary America, this graphic program poses a timeless question--has humankind learned anything from the past? An LCA release. Awards: Columbus Film Festival
American Revolution: The Cause of Liberty
Michael Douglas stars as John Laurens in a story based on actual correspondence between John and his father, Henry, who was president of the First Continental Congress. As a patriotic young American student studying law in London in the 1770's, John agonizes over events in America and finally decides to…
The Crusades - Saints and Sinners
This full-scale dramatization, much of it filmed in actual locations, re-creates the events surrounding the First Crusade in the 11th century. Exploring the motivations of the people and their leaders, The Crusades climaxes in the taking of Jerusalem, a battle that reflects the eternal irony of the concept of "holy…
The Immigrant Experience: The Long, Long Journey
The hopes and conflicts of all immigrants are seen through the eyes of the boy Janek, and in a warm scene at the program's close, Janek the man looks at his dreams of a lifetime being realized through his grandchildren. An LCA release. Awards: Chicago, Columbus, National Educational, Oakland Film…