America, Empire Of Liberty

Series charting the history of America, written and presented by David Reynolds.

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Episodes

SeriesEpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
A01Lost Civilisations20080915

Who were America's first inhabitants?

A02Columbus - Bearer Of Death20080916

The first European explorers brought fatal diseases which reduced the numbers of native Americans.

A03Borderlands Of The Spanish Superpower20080917

The Spanish successfully colonised Central and South America, but the lure of gold and silver encouraged some to try their luck to the north.

A04New France Astride America's Heartland20080918

The French moved from the north to the south, searching for the mouth of the Mississippi.

A05Southern Planters And Black Slaves20080919

The English settled in Virginia and Maryland.

Tobacco became an important crop and slaves from Africa were introduced.

A06Faith And Freedom In New England *20080922

The Puritan founders of New England sowed the seeds of modern democracy.

A07The Middle Colonies And The Melting Pot *20080923

Dutch settlers in New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey pioneered a spirit of religious tolerance.

A08Awakenings And Nightmares *20080924

Religious revivals challenge the authority of the formal hierarchical churches.

Meanwhile, slavery is now a vital part of the colonial economy.

A09The Battle For Empire *20080925

North America becomes part of the conflict between Britain and France.

A10Taxes, Tea And Rights20080926

Colonists throw thousands of pounds of tea into Boston Harbour as a protest against a tax imposed by the British.

A11Declaring Independence20080929

The Declaration of Independence is drafted.

Its principal author is Thomas Jefferson.

A12Winning Independence20080930

The battles against the British.

A13To Form A More Perfect Union20081001

The Founding Fathers form a federal government under a new constitution.

A14Making The Republic Work20081002

George Washington is inaugurated as the country's first President and the Bill of Rights is ratified.

A15Founding A Capital. *20081003

The fierce bargaining between north and south over where to locate the country's capital.

A16War And Terror *20081006

America becomes involved as Britain and France battle for global empire.

A17Remember The Ladies20081007

The role of women in building the new Republic.

A18Jefferson's Western Empire20081008

The settlement of America's vast interior.

A19Victims Of Liberty20081009

Indian resistance and an increased demand for slave labour by the new territories in the west.

A20The Second War Of Independence20081010

America declares war on Britain and Washington burns.

A21For Jackson And Democracy *20081013

The growth of democracy and political parties in America.

A22A Christian Republic?20081014

Religious revivals transform American society in the early 19th century.

A23The Indian Trail Of Tears20081015

Indian tribes are forced to either assimilate or move west of the Mississippi.

A24Frontier Values20081016

The government sells off vast tracts of land and thousands of people migrate westward in search of a better life.

A25Let Us Conquer Space20081017

The building of the Erie Canal and the railway boom.

A26The Arsenic Of Mexico20081020

America and Mexico fight over territory in Texas, New Mexico and California.

A27Gold, God And The Little Giant20081021

The gold rush and a compromise on the issue of slavery.

A28Paddies, Papists And Demon Drink20081022

Irish immigrants flock to America, where they are not always welcome.

A29Slaves, Masters And The Slave Power20081023

Northerners fear the dominance of the slave-owning south.

A30A House Divided20081024

The anguished debate about the place of slavery in the 'land of liberty' reaches a critical point.

B31The Ninety-day War2009011920110404

The start of the Civil War: a fight for Southern independence and the end of slavery.

B32The Killers Take Command2009012020110405

In this episode, we meet the men on both sides of the battle lines: Robert E Lee and Ulysses S Grant.

B33Forever Free2009012120110406

Abraham Lincoln signs the Emancipation Proclamation to free the slaves.

B34A New Nation2009012220110407

The Battle of Gettysburg.

B35War Behind The Battle Lines2009012320110408

The burning of Atlanta.

Episode 5: 'The War Behind the Battle Lines': The burning of Atlanta.

Previously broadcast on 23 January, 2009, as part of David Reynolds 90 part series America, Empire of Liberty.

B36The Passing Of The Dead2009012620110411

The end of the Civil War and the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.

B37Dead States, New Birth2009012720110412

The North attempts to force change upon the South.

The North attempts to force change upon the South.

B38Reunion But Not Reconstruction2009012820110413

Former slaves enjoy a brief period of political equality in the South.

B39New South, Old Ways2009012920110414

The birth of segregation.

B40War And Memory2009013020110415

How the Civil War became etched on the American consciousness for generations to come.

B41Big Business20090202

The rise of business tycoons such as Andrew Carnegie, JD Rockefeller and Jp Morgan

B42Made In America20090203

Industrial growth and the arrival of the railways.

B43The Cities - America's Pride And Shame *20090204

The cities illustrate both sides of America: wealth and opportunity side by side with slum poverty.

The cities illustrate both sides of America: wealth side by side with slum poverty.

B44The Farmers And Workers Revolt20090205

The rise of unionisation and strikes across America.

Will socialism take off?

B45Huddled Masses, Savage Hordes20090206

The impact of mass immigration on American politics and culture.

B46Politics And Progress20090209

How politics took hold of the cities, for good and for ill.

B47Roosevelt And Reform20090210

How Theodore Roosevelt came to power and his battle to bring big business to heel.

B48The Taste Of Empire20090211

By David Reynolds.

America's expansion into Cuba and the Philippines and the impact it had at home.

B49The Wild West20090212

How the West was finally settled and then turned into a myth by the American people.

B50Fun And God20090213

The rise of the leisure, baseball and the power of religion.

B51Too Proud To Fight *20090216

The sinking of the Lusitania and Woodrow Wilson's fight to keep America out of the First World War.

B52A World Safe For Democracy *20090217

America enters the war in Europe and accepts female suffrage at home.

B53The Lost Peace *20090218

The battle to form a fair peace and create the League of Nations.

B54100 Percent American20090219

America wrestles with the impact that its diverse population will bring.

B55The Jazz Age Hits Main Street *20090220

How a surfeit of music, sex and freedom ushered in the Prohibition and fundamental religious belief.

How a surfeit of music, sex and freedom ushered in the Prohibition.

B56From Boom To Bust * * *20090223

Series charting the history of America.

The story of the Wall Street Crash, the Great Depression and the failure of Herbert Hoover.

B57New Deal *20090224

Series charting the history of America.

How Franklin D Roosevelt got America working again.

B58A War For The Survival Of Democracy *20090225

The fight to keep America neutral and at peace while arming the allies.

B59Floundering Into War20090226

The attack on Pearl Harbor and the decision to go to war.

B60A Hell Of A War20090227

Written and presented by David Reynolds.

Segregation among the troops, the death of FDR and the atomic bomb.

C61Red Or Dead? *20090601

How the powerful Second World War alliance between the United States and the Soviet Union hardened into the Cold War.

C62A World Half-slave, Half-free20090602

Truman and Stalin square off over the Berlin blockade and the Soviet Union tests a nuclear bomb.

C63The Suburban Republic20090603

By David Reynolds.

After the war, Americans turn their attentions back home, building homes and highways and creating suburbs.

After the war, Americans turn their attentions back home, building homes and highways.

C64Korea - The Cold War Turns Hot20090604

The US army clashes with Chinese and Soviet-backed forces in Korea, while Senator Joseph McCarthy stokes up fears of communist spies back in America.

C65Defended To Death20090605

In the 1950s the country enters a period of unprecedented prosperity, despite the growing threat of nuclear war.

The country enters a period of unprecedented prosperity, despite the threat of nuclear war

C66The Back Of The Bus * *20090608

The US Supreme Court orders schools to become racially mixed and Martin Luther King emerges as a civil rights leader.

C67'and We Shall Overcome' *20090609

Activists confront segregationists in the south and President Johnson signs the Voting Rights Act after years of protests and political pressure.

Activists confront segregationists and President Johnson signs the Voting Rights Act.

C68Black Power *20090610

Despite the gains of the civil rights movement, African-American frustration at the slow pace of change results in riots and the emergence of militant leaders.

C69Women's Liberation *20090611

American women push back against sexism, demanding career opportunities and access to birth control.

American women push back against sexism.

C70The 'war On Poverty' *20090612

Lyndon Johnson seizes the political moment after the assassination of President Kennedy to make sweeping reforms to America's healthcare and education programmes.

Lyndon Johnson seizes the political moment after the assassination of President Kennedy.

C71Cuba - That Four Letter Word *20090615

An American-backed invasion of Cuba fails but President Kennedy saves face when he stops the Soviet Union from placing missiles on the Caribbean island.

C72Vietnam - The Battleground Of Freedom *20090616

The threat of communism causes successive American leaders to become embroiled in a disastrous foreign conflict.

C731968 - Paralysis Of A President *20090617

Domestic tensions and the war in Vietnam throw the Johnson administration into a tailspin, opening the door for radical movements and a conservative backlash.

Domestic tensions and the war in Vietnam throw the Johnson administration into a tailspin.

C74Vietnam - 'peace With Honour'? *20090618

America wakes up to its involvement in south east Asia and Nixon pulls out the troops as public sentiment turns against the war.

America wakes up to its involvement in south east Asia and Nixon pulls out the troops.

C75Watergate And The Imperial Presidency *20090619

Paranoia and arrogance in the White House lead to the downfall of President Nixon.

C76America In Retreat?20090622

Watergate, Vietnam and an economy sinking under the weight of the oil crisis drain American vitality and set the stage for a conservative re-emergence.

Watergate, Vietnam and an economy damaged by the oil crisis drain American vitality.

C77A Constitutional Abortion *20090623

In 1973 the Supreme Court determines a framework for legal abortion, marking out a fault line in American politics for years to come.

C78The 'silent Majority' Finds Its Voice *20090624

Conservative reaction to the civil rights and women's liberation movements galvanises America's political system.

C79Putting God Back Into Politics *20090625

Evangelical Christians get involved in public life to fight against what they see as the liberal excesses of the 1960s and 70s.

Evangelical Christians get involved in public life to fight against liberal excesses.

C80Keeping Faith *20090626

Evangelical Christian and Washington outsider Jimmy Carter is elected president, but his liberal values doom his administration in the face of the right-wing surge of the Reagan revolution.

C81The Acting President20090629

Ronald Reagan, known more for his speechmaking than his work habits, turns his message of economic freedom and small government into resounding electoral victories.

Ronald Reagan turns his message of economic freedom into resounding electoral victories.

C82Reagan And The 'evil Empire'20090630

President Reagan makes progress with a new Cold War strategy, combining tough anti-communist talk with a willingness to negotiate over nuclear arms.

President Reagan makes progress with a new Cold War strategy.

C83The Information Revolution *20090701

The personal computer breaks into the mainstream, demonstrating the flexibility and ingenuity of the American economy.

C84Tear Down This Wall *20090702

The first President Bush responds pragmatically to the dramatic events of 1989, when the Berlin Wall falls and the Chinese government cracks down on student protesters in Tiananmen Square.

C85A New World Order? *20090703

A swift victory in Iraq points to a new international consensus, but the failure to remove Saddam Hussein from power sows the seeds of future conflict.

C86Sole Superpower, Edgy Americans *20090706

President Clinton presides over a grubby and divisive period in the political world, but at the same time new technology bolsters the American economy.

C87Multiculturalism Or Disintegration? *20090707

America grapples with new racial realities as new waves of immigration from Latin America change the country's ethnic makeup.

C88America Is Under Attack *20090708

The era of relative peace following the Cold War comes to a violent end on September 11, 2001.

C89Iraq And The 'axis Of Evil' *20090709

The September 11 attacks propel President Bush and America in to wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

C90 LASTTo Shape An Uncertain Destiny *20090710

Economic issues overshadow foreign conflicts as change once again transforms American politics during the 2008 presidential election.