History Detectives

HDSI - Who Killed Jimmy Hoffa?

Episode: Notorious teamster boss Jimmy Hoffa disappeared without a trace in 1975. Was he murdered? If so, who pulled the trigger and why? Watch as the History Detectives tackle this famous cold case.

Air Date 7/22/14

 
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HISTORY DETECTIVES returns to explore the stories behind historic sites, artifacts and tall tales told in cities across the country, with the help of an inquisitive team of fact-finders with an uncanny talent for uncovering the truth.
Upcoming Air Dates
  • #807 — St. Valentine's Day Massacre, George Washington Miniature, Stalag 17 |
    Thursday, Aug 25 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #808 — Hot Town Poster, Face Jug, Lost City of Gold |
    Friday, Aug 26 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #809 — Jackie Robinson All-Stars, Modoc Basket, Special Agent Five |
    Saturday, Aug 27 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #810 — Wb Cartoons, Galvez Papers, Mussolini Dagger |
    Tuesday, Aug 30 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #811 — Chicago Clock, Universal Friends, War Dog Letter |
    Wednesday, Aug 31 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #601 — History Detectives
    WWII Diary - A man in Lexington, North Carolina, has a poignant diary written by a World War II pilot. He inherited the diary 20 years ago from his father, who said it once belonged to a close friend whom he fought alongside in WWII, until the war took his friend's life in 1944. Keeping the last thoughts of this fallen solider is now too great a burden for the contributor. Can HISTORY DETECTIVES return it to a living relative? The stakes are raised as the diary pages reveal the story of a young American pilot stationed in England, racing against time and all odds to return home before the birth of his first child. Host Wes Cowan heads to Florida on a quest to reunite the diary with the pilot's surviving family. 1856 Mormon Tale - The tattered pages of an anonymously authored 1856 book titled Female Life Among the Mormons claim to be the personal memoirs of a New York woman who married a Mormon elder at a time when polygamy was openly practiced but characterized by some abolitionists as the "enslavement of white women." In it, the author says she traveled with her husband as the Mormons were chased out of New York and Illinois, eventually settling in the Utah Territory. Throughout her journey, the author claims to have witnessed a shocking, immoral culture of violence, polygamy, sexual depravity and brainwashing. The contributor from Stanfordville, New York, wants to know who wrote the book and if, in fact, it is a true account Mormon life. The search to find the author takes HISTORY DETECTIVES into a mystery that has haunted bibliographers for nearly 150 years. Host Tukufu Zuberi sorts fact from fiction in this fascinating tale. Annie Oakley Coin - A contributor from Bath, Maine, has an 1853 French Napoleon coin with a bent, split edge and a great bit of family lore: that the coin was shot by Annie Oakley and that Oakley herself gave the coin to two of the contributor's great-granduncles. It doesn't look like any of the souvenir coins the Wild West Show icon typically handed out to her many fans. Can HISTORY DETECTIVES prove that the sharp-shooting star of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show shot the coin for the two brothers - and turn family lore into bona fide bragging rights? To find out, host Elyse Luray travels to Cody, Wyoming, to conduct ballistics tests, scour the Buffalo Bill Historical Center archives and even re-create one of Oakley's sure shots. In HD where available.
    Monday, Sep 26 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #602 — History Detectives
    Red Hand Flag - During her last active duty posting with the Army at Ft. Jackson, a Desert Storm veteran from South Carolina learned about a local, all-but-forgotten African-American infantry regiment in WWI. Years later, she purchased a worn red-white-red striped flag with a red felted hand sewn in the center and small U.S. flags sewn in the corner. The contributor would like to know if her flag was carried into battle by one of the few African-American infantry regiments that fought in WWI under the command of the French. These unsung heroes of the Great War exhibited extraordinary heroism in battle and were highly decorated by the French. If this particular flag has French origins, though, why is it red-white-red-striped and not blue-white-red like the tricolor French flag? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray heads to Columbia, South Carolina, to link this mysterious flag to the legacy of the Red Hand Division and its wartime triumphs. Seth Eastman Painting - A Decatur, Illinois, man purchased a painting that depicts a scene of traditional Native-American life. The contributor, a longtime student of the history of the American West, says the image appealed to him because it was strangely familiar, almost iconic in its imagery. The painting bears the initials "S.E." and the seller's Web page reads "Seth Eastman, American Painting, Oil on Canvas." Could this painting be an authentic work of artist and military officer Seth Eastman - and an accurate depiction of Native-American life in the mid-1800s? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Tukufu Zuberi travels to historic Fort Snelling in Minnesota to examine how Eastman carried out government policies of Native-American removal while capturing on canvas what he believed was a doomed way of life. Isleton Tong - The president of the historical society in Isleton, California, has inherited a two-story wooden building with tin sides that she believes once housed a Chinese Tong. In the late 1800s, Chinese immigrants risked everything to start a new life in America. But Americans who feared losing jobs to the new, cheap labor turned the land of opportunity hostile. Chinatowns burned, ethnic slurs flew and Congress prohibited Chinese laborers from entering or working in the country. For outcast Chinese, Tongs were places of protection and solidarity during this time of chaos, where they could worship, study and settle legal disputes peacefully. In the newspapers, the Tongs were secretive centers of gangland warfare, opium deals and gambling. Was there a Tong operating inside Isleton's once-booming Chinatown? If so, what happened there? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwen Wright heads to the Sacramento Delta and to San Francisco to unravel the mystery of the Chinese Tong.
    Tuesday, Sep 27 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #603 — History Detectives
    Japanese Balloon Bomb - The granddaughter of a World War II veteran from Austin, Texas, has a wartime memento with a note claiming it's a piece of Japanese balloon that floated across the Pacific Ocean in 1945. The alleged balloon scrap could be evidence of a unique weapon in modern warfare: the Japanese balloon bomb. More than 9,000 of these incendiary weapons were launched from Japan during the war via the jet stream with the intention of causing mass disruption and forest fires in the American West. The existence and purpose of the balloon bombs were kept secret from the American public for security reasons, until a tragic accident forced a change in policy. The balloon bombs caused the only fatalities on the U.S. mainland due to enemy action during World War II. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Tukufu Zuberi travels to Austin, Texas and to the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, to learn whether this souvenir is a missing piece of a secret weapon. Society Circus Program - In her school's drama closet, a young girl from Oregon finds a curious, yellowed circus program that reads "Official Program of Cobina Wright's Society Circus for the benefit of the Boy Scout Foundation, Hon. Franklin D. Roosevelt, President, Season 1933." Who was Cobina Wright and what do the Boy Scouts, FDR and Cobina's Circus - with its lengthy "who's-who" celebrity list - have in common? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwen Wright explores New York City's 1930s high society and illuminates a connection between FDR and the Boy Scouts that inspired one of the most popular and effective pieces of the president's New Deal program. Camp David Letter - Maryland's Camp David has served as a presidential retreat for more than 60 years and is possibly best known for the Camp David Accords, the famous Egyptian-Israeli peace agreements signed there in 1978. A self-styled dumpster diver in San Francisco has recovered a windfall of memorabilia that reveals a story of Camp David's beginnings. The salvaged items appear to have once belonged to a three-generation Navy family headed by John H. Kevers. Among photos, dog tags and epaulets, one letter in particular caught the contributor's attention: It's from Ronald Reagan to Kevers' widow, stating "... Captain John H. Kevers gave many years of service to Presidents, starting with Franklin D. Roosevelt ... Because of Captain Kevers, we have the enjoyable facility of Camp David ..." In Los Angeles and San Francisco, HISTORY DETECTIVES host Wes Cowan searches presidential archives and Navy history to pinpoint Kevers' connection to the secret mountaintop hideaway that was FDR's "Shangri-La."
    Wednesday, Sep 28 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #604 — History Detectives
    China Marine Jacket - A man in Santa Monica, California, received an embroidered jacket as a gift from his son. The contributor, a former Marine, is intrigued by the jacket's stitched inscriptions, which read: "4th Marines," "Shanghai," "China," "1937-1939" and "MWD." He knows the 4th Marines were transferred from Shanghai to the Philippines in November 1941 amidst growing tensions with the Japanese. The unit was attacked by the Japanese on the same day as the Pearl Harbor bombings. Some of the men who fought in the Philippines never returned, having suffered Japanese imprisonment and the Bataan Death March. But to whom did this particular jacket belong, and what was his legacy as a Marine? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwen Wright travels to Washington, DC, and Los Angeles to investigate the story of the "China Marines," a regiment that worked under extreme circumstances to keep the peace and protect American interests during the perilous ramp up to World War II. Airstream Caravan - A couple in Southern California owns a classic Airstream trailer that may lay claim to an illustrious past. The trailer's fading numbers and logo indicate that it is an early member of the elite Wally Byam Caravan Club International. In the mid-20th century, members of this adventure club followed legendary leader and Airstream founder Wally Byam all over the world: Central America, Europe, Africa and the Yucatan Peninsula. Did this particular Airstream make the journey on the historic "Cape Town to Cairo Caravan" of 1959? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Tukufu Zuberi heads to Denver and Southern California to explore one man's wanderlust at the birth of American leisure travel and, ultimately, to a spectacular 221-day, 14,307-mile trek from the tip of Southern Africa to the pyramids of Ancient Egypt. Lincoln Forgery - A woman in Portland, Oregon, owns a bound volume of 19th-century sheet music. The book contains several "Abraham Lincoln" signatures on random pages. At the end of one of the compositions, a handwritten notarized inscription claims the music is a gift from President Lincoln's widow, Mary Todd Lincoln, to Lincoln's former coachman, William P. Brown, in 1866. Could the sheet music really be from Lincoln's personal library? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Wes Cowan travels to Chicago and Springfield, Illinois, to explore the years after Lincoln's death and to illuminate the origins of these curious documents.
    Thursday, Sep 29 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #605 — History Detectives
    Hindenburg Artifact - A Hoboken, New Jersey, man has a palm-sized, army-green metal box that looks like an instrument panel. Beneath a shattered plastic covering is a sliding, numbered scale; knobs on each end move a lever across the scale. German writing indicates the country of origin. Might this instrument have been recovered from the crash site of the Hindenburg in Lakehurst, New Jersey? Family lore says that a distant relative was among the many bystanders plucking souvenirs from the wreckage of the terrifying disaster. Chemicals from the fire or balloon envelope gas would have evaporated 10 minutes after the explosion, but the broken plastic can be tested for age and heat distress with forensic analysis of the instrument. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray travels to Atlanta and the New Jersey landing site of the ill-fated zeppelin to determine if the instrument panel is in fact from the horrifying crash. Bonus Army Stamp - A collector in Hawaii has a postage-sized stamp with an illustration of a World War I "doughboy" solider and the words "PAY THE BONUS." The contributor, whose grandfather was a World War I soldier, thinks the stamp is linked to the "Bonus Army" veterans. A bill was passed in 1924 promising WWI veterans a payment 21 years later - dubbed a "bonus" - in 1945. When the Great Depression hit, veterans organized to demand early payment of the bonus. They organized a protest march on Washington in 1932, demanding pay for their combat, and approximately 20,000 veterans camped out near the Capitol following the march. Weeks went by until Herbert Hoover ordered General Douglas McArthur to force the vets out. Two veterans were shot and killed; thousands were tear-gassed. What role did this political stamp play in the veterans' movement? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Wes Cowan heads to Hyde Park, New York, and Washington, DC, to reveal the stamp's connection to the veterans' struggle. Dempsey Fight Bell - July 4, 1919, marks the day America found its true calling in a national obsession. Icon Jack Dempsey became the world's first boxing superstar, and he did it with the clang of a bell. Now, a contributor in Reno, Nevada, wants to know: Is the bell he's toasted many a night on the wall of his favorite bar the one that was ringside at Dempsey's legendary world heavyweight championship match? The question goes beyond a single fight. Dempsey's bout ushered in the Roaring 20s, America's fascination with celebrity and the golden age of championship sports. Tukufu Zuberi leads the HISTORY DETECTIVES to weigh in on the case in Reno, Nevada, and New York City, sorting truth from myth to determine which clues ring true.
    Friday, Sep 30 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #606 — History Detectives
    GAR Photograph - A Civil War enthusiast in Etters, Pennsylvania, owns a striking vintage photograph that depicts about 20 older white men in full dress uniform, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with two black men. In Reconstruction-era America, association between blacks and whites was frequently taboo. What brought them together for this portrait? Their bond, it turns out, was the Grand Army of the Republic, a remarkable fraternal order organized for war veterans. In fact, integration was actually a GAR standard. The reason? The men's common struggle with post traumatic stress transcended race. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray heads to Cazenovia, New York, and Washington, DC, to investigate the first national social group to challenge the color barrier. Bill Pickett Saddle - A Staten Island woman owns a well-worn saddle with the name "Bill Pickett" burned into it. She believes it was once owned by legendary cowboy Bill Pickett, an African-American Wild West Show and film star. Pickett invented bulldogging, the rodeo event now known as steer wrestling. His back story is perhaps most intriguing: Born to slave parents, Pickett rose to entertain kings and dignitaries on an international tour of his Wild West show; he counted among his friends Will Rogers and Tom Mix. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Tukufu Zuberi heads to Oklahoma to visit the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, meets a real-life steer wrestler and talks with a 101 Ranch historian about the legacy of the legendary "Bulldogger." Hitler Films - A contributor in Staten Island, New York, has several film cans, unseen since World War II, that he believes may contain German home movies of Nazi officials, possibly even Hitler. He received them from his wife's uncle, a GI in Germany, who found the cans in the bombed ruins of the Old Opera House in the northern Bavarian town of Bayreuth. The first glimpse of one of these fragile reels reveals footage of Hitler, Goebbels, Goering and Himmler arriving at the Richard Wagner opera festival, staged annually in Bayreuth. In New York City, HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwen Wright examines this film's depiction of the Nazis' manipulation of art and culture to bolster the party's following.
    Saturday, Oct 1 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #607 — History Detectives
    Black Tom Shell - A woman in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, has an explosive artifact in her possession: a large, intact artillery shell, along with a note in her mother's handwriting that reads "Black Tom Explosion of 1914." The contributor's mother's record-keeping is off: It was not 1914, but July 30, 1916, when a German spy ring carried out a well-planned set of synchronized explosions on Black Tom Island in New York's harbor, using the United States' own cache of munitions produced to aid Britain and France in World War I. Two million pounds of exploding ammunition rocked the country as far away as Philadelphia and blew the windows out of nearly every high rise in lower Manhattan, injuring hundreds. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwendolyn Wright travels to Maryland and New Jersey to determine whether this shell was involved in one of the earliest foreign terrorist attacks on American soil. USS Olympia Glass - The door of a farmhouse in eastern Nebraska has an etched glass window with a depiction of a ship cruising through open waters, smoke pouring from its stacks. The home's owner believes the ship is the USS Olympia, the cruiser commanded by Commodore George Dewey when he defeated Admiral Montojo's Spanish aquadron at Manila Bay in 1898, beginning the Spanish-American War. The farm's been in the family for more than half a century, and a 1977 letter from the USS Olympia Association states that etched glass windows may have adorned Admiral Dewey's own stateroom. HISTORY DETECTIVES host Wes Cowan travels to Fremont, Nebraska, and Philadelphia to find our whether the unique window can serve as a portal into a turning point in American foreign policy. Front Street Blockhouse - When a young couple in Schenectady, New York, purchased their dream house in the town's historic district, they believed their home was built for a middle-class family in the late 19th century, like all other homes in their neighborhood. But four mysterious stone walls visible in the attic have led them to believe otherwise. Did this house once guard against enemy attacks during the tense years of the French and Indian Wars - nearly 300 years ago? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray travels to Upstate New York to determine whether this unassuming structure may have helped ensure the survival of the town of Schenectady, a 17th- and 18th-century vanguard Dutch outpost, as it fought France and her Indian allies for control of the lucrative fur trade.
    Monday, Oct 3 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #608 — History Detectives
    John Adams Book - A woman in Littleton, New Hampshire, inherited her husband's aunt's belongings, which include a curious late-18th-century book titled Trials of Patriots. It contains what appears to be President John Adams' signature in three places, and includes an inscription, "Charles Adams from His Father, 1794." The book is a collection of transcripts chronicling the sedition trials of Irish and Scottish radicals. If the book is indeed from Adams to his son, it could reveal pivotal clues about the inner-workings of this presidential family. In Boston and John Adams' hometown of Quincy, Massachusetts, HISTORY DETECTIVES host Gwendolyn Wright examines the Adams family's correspondence and conflict as they balanced home life with public service. Mankato Spoon - A woman in Portland, Oregon, has a curious spoon that once belonged to her grandmother. It's known in her family as "the spoon of atrocities." An eerie scene is etched into its sterling silver bowl: wagons, buildings and a crowd of spectators gathered before a gallows with figures hanging from them. A disturbing message is inscribed: "Hanging 38 Sioux In 1862 Mankato, Minn." What is this tragic scene and why has it been etched into what looks like a commemorative spoon? HISTORY DETECTIVES host Wes Cowan travels to Mankato, New Ulm and Minneapolis, Minnesota, to explore the clash between white settlers and Sioux in the mid-19th century - and a struggle that led to the largest mass execution in American history. NC-4: First Across the Atlantic - Almost 10 years before Charles Lindbergh's famous solo flight across the Atlantic, the NC-4 was the first aircraft to make the transatlantic journey in May 1919. A woman in Saratoga, California, has a small square of canvas-like fabric that she believes comes from the NC-4, one of four U.S. Navy "flying boats" that had originally been commissioned to alert American destroyers to the locations of German U-boat submarines that were wreaking havoc on merchant ships along the U.S. coast during World War I. Due to early mechanical problems, the NC-4 was considered by many aviation insiders to be the least likely candidate to complete the trek across the Atlantic. In Pensacola, Florida, and Hammondsport, New York, HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray investigates the little-known story of the NC-4 and its historic voyage.
    Tuesday, Oct 4 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #807 — St. Valentine's Day Massacre, George Washington Miniature, Stalag 17
    Two generations of prominent Chicago families say this 12-gauge shotgun played a role in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. Can HISTORY DETECTIVES confirm their story? Then, combing through documents in one of Manhattan's first taverns, a man finds a miniature painting of George Washington's profile. Why is this find much more than a piece of art? And, 65-years ago a fellow prisoner sketched George Silva's portrait from inside a World War II German prisoner camp. George wants to find out what happened to the artist. His search leads to a moving meeting. These three encore segments first aired as part of three different episodes in HISTORY DETECTIVES' seventh season in 2009.
    Thursday, Aug 25 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #808 — Hot Town Poster, Face Jug, Lost City of Gold
    This poster tells the story of a battle brewing. We see a clenched fist, what looks like a stern police officer, and the words: Hot Town - Pigs in the street. Who made this poster and why? Then, did the artist mean to scare someone with the grimace on this face jug? What's the story behind this peculiar pottery? And, if this inscription on a rock in Phoenix is authentic, Spanish explorers arrived in America much earlier than records show.
    Friday, Aug 26 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #809 — Jackie Robinson All-Stars, Modoc Basket, Special Agent Five
    Tukufu Zuberi tallies the facts on a 1940s Jackie Robinson All-Stars scorecard. Black and white athletes played this game before Robinson became the first black major league baseball player. What role did this game play in the integration of major league baseball? Then, we see the name 'Toby' worked into the weave of this basket. Could that be Toby Riddle, the woman congress honored as a heroine of the Indian Wars of the American West? And, why would J. Edgar Hoover endorse a crime radio drama? Does the script portray actual events?
    Saturday, Aug 27 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #810 — Wb Cartoons, Galvez Papers, Mussolini Dagger
    Tukufu Zuberi doesn't recognize many of the characters in this box of cartoon drawings and cels, but together they tell an unexpected story about the early days of animation and the people behind the art. Then, Elyse Luray unravels a love story when she explores why a regional governor cared enough about a slave to sign her emancipation papers. And (in a repeate segment), did this elaborate dagger once belong to Benito Mussolini? Wes Cowan retraces the last steps of Fascist Italian dictator to find the answer.
    Tuesday, Aug 30 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #811 — Chicago Clock, Universal Friends, War Dog Letter
    A Michigan woman wonders if her family clock kept time for the entire Midwest during the 19th century. The search takes HISTORY DETECTIVES host Elyse Luray back to the industrial age when the country first began regulating time. Then, a document seems connected to an early controversial religion -- the first religion founded by an American-born woman. History Detective Gwen Wright wants to know why her name is missing from this critical record, the 'Incorporation of the Universal Friends Church.' And, in an encore segment, detective Tukufu Zuberi heads to Cat Island, near Gulfport, to find out what went wrong with a WWII dog-training program there.
    Wednesday, Aug 31 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #901 — History Detectives
    Mysterious airplane engine parts lead Eduardo Pagan to a forbidden Hawaiian island where he finds a heroic story often overshadowed by the raid on Pearl Harbor. Then Elyse Luray tries to match metal shavings to the right cannon. What role did these shavings play in the early hours of the civil war? An early 20th century saddle puts Wes Cowan on the trail of Yakima Cunutt. How did this rodeo champion change Hollywood movie-making?
    Thursday, Sep 1 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #902 — History Detectives
    What do the violent images on this pamphlet mean? Wes Cowan decodes the message and the strategy behind a U.S. World War II propaganda leaflet. Then, Gwen Wright traces a cherished family heirloom, a watercolor, to the world of Tiffany stained glass. How did Tiffany open a window of opportunity for early 20th century women? A touching eulogy stitches together the lives of two Americans fought in the Spanish Civil War. Almost a century later, Tukufu Zuberi unites a nephew and a son of those soldiers.
    Friday, Sep 2 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #903 — History Detectives
    Wes Cowan investigates a raid on the federal armory in Harpers Ferry. Eduardo Pagan wonders why U.S. troops were in Siberia during World War I and Elyse Luray sizes up a Ronald McDonald costume.
    Saturday, Sep 3 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #904 — History Detectives
    HISTORY DETECTIVES investigate a Civil War soldier's letter, fabric from an aircraft that could be linked to Charles Lindbergh and Igor Sikorsky, and a 1950s comic book Negro Romance.
    Monday, Sep 5 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #905 — History Detectives
    HISTORY DETECTIVES investigate a propeller from a World War II drone, a wooden club that could be Teddy Roosevelt's and a letter that Clara Barton could have written concerning a soldier's life.
    Tuesday, Sep 6 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #906 — History Detectives
    Can the Japanese characters carved into this cane unlock the mystery of a family's past in a World War II relocation camp? Can HISTORY DETECTIVES trace this unusual wooden telescope to its Revolution era ancestor? And is this drawing of huge, eight pound gold nuggets genuine or another example of Gold Rush hype?
    Wednesday, Sep 7 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #907 — History Detectives
    In this episode, the images and the words on this poster suggest a battle is brewing: a clenched fist, police described as "pigs." Who made this poster and why? Then, was this woodcarving of a mouth and chin once part of the Andrew Jackson figurehead affixed to the bow of the USS Constitution? And, how does this basket connect us to a woman congress honored as a heroine of the Modoc Indian Wars?
    Thursday, Sep 8 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #908 — History Detectives
    Did the first woman photographer assigned to the White House use this camera to shoot President Truman? Then, did families of the Confederate South use a child's doll to smuggle medicine past the Northern blockade? And, what does this 15th century map, with a mix of French, English and Spanish labels, tell us about how Europe colonized Florida?
    Friday, Sep 9 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #909 — History Detectives
    Loyalist or patriot? What can the notes in a 1775 Almanac tell us about how the revolution may have strained family ties? Do these phonograph records called "Get Thin to Music" reveal Jack Lalanne, the media exercise guru of the 1920s? Did NASA unwittingly transport Andy Warhol's art to the moon?
    Saturday, Sep 10 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #910 — History Detectives
    Gwen dissects the mystery behind an ornate Belgian war medal. Elyse traces a pennant to the early battle for the women's vote. And a cartoon cel leads Tukufu to unsung heroes of animation.
    Monday, Sep 12 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #911 — History Detectives
    What can a Club Continental business card tell us about California's prohibition-era underground? Then, did gangs use this shotgun in the Chicago St. Valentine's Day massacre that shocked the nation? And why is FDR on the guest list for a High Society Circus during the depths of the Depression?
    Tuesday, Sep 13 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #912 — History Detectives
    A one-of-a-kind photograph poses a jarring question: Is the African American wearing a Confederate uniform slave or free? And, did Hollywood treat the Native Americans listed in this payment ledger fairly? Then, an ornate stock certificate unlocks secrets to the earliest days of Harlem.
    Wednesday, Sep 14 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1001 — History Detectives
    In the 10th season premiere episode, Elyse Luray and Wes Cowan investigate whether they have found rock's Holy Grail, the long-lost electric Fender Stratocaster Bob Dylan plugged in at the '65 Newport Folk Festival, changing rock 'n' roll forever. Tukufu Zuberi tracks down some autographs allegedly signed for two brothers in Miami Beach during the Beatles' legendary 1964 "British Invasion" tour of the United States. Finally, Gwendolyn Wright investigates a $5 thrift store find and unearths a little-known artistic side of musical iconoclast Frank Zappa.
    Thursday, Sep 15 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1002 — History Detectives
    Wes Cowan hunts for the identity of a man whose name is engraved on a rare matched set of Civil War-era pistols, still in the original case. Tukufu Zuberi tracks down the story behind an old 78rpm, distributed by K.K.K. Records, containing songs titled "The Bright Fiery Cross" and "The Jolly Old Klansman." And Eduardo Pagan tries to prove that James Jamerson, a bass player whose bass line drove the Motown sound, owned a battered Ampeg B-15 amp that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will display - but only if inductee Jamerson really owned it.
    Friday, Sep 16 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1003 — History Detectives
    Host Elyse Luray floors country music singer Clint Black with the information she uncovers about his turn-of-the-20th-century book of wanted posters. Then, can Eduardo Pagan link a chunk of molten metal to the B-25 Bomber that crashed into the Empire State Building in 1945? Did HISTORY DETECTIVES find a slide of Bettie Page, "Queen of Pinups," that somehow escaped the censorship of the 1950s? Finally, a six-foot metal bar tells the story behind the original iconic Hollywood sign.
    Saturday, Sep 17 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1004 — History Detectives
    What does the evocative symbol of a bird dropping a bomb mean? Did two patches with the symbol belong to a World War II unit? Then, Gwen Wright connects a tiny swatch of tattered red fabric to a pivotal moment in U.S. Civil War history. Did a neckpiece and leggings once belong to Chief Black Kettle, known as a Cheyenne Peace Chief? Finally, did President Lincoln actually sign this note?
    Monday, Sep 19 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1005 — History Detectives
    HISTORY DETECTIVES steps into a family dispute: Was this picture frame crafted from the staircase banister of the Titanic, the Lusitania or neither? Then Tukufu Zuberi wonders whether Woolworth signs were part of the scene at the 1960 Winston-Salem lunch-counter sit-ins. For 70 years, toy soldiers have haunted their owner with a question: Was the father of his childhood friend a Nazi spy? Then, a journal full of liquor recipes makes a man wonder if his uncle was a prohibition bootlegger.
    Tuesday, Sep 20 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1006 — History Detectives
    Can HISTORY DETECTIVES return the diary of a fallen North Vietnamese soldier to that veteran's family? U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta takes part in the exchange. A notebook with recipes for large volumes of liquor makes an Indiana man wonder if his rich uncle earned money bootlegging during Prohibition. What can a ledger tell us about Hollywood's treatment of Native-American actors? How did they earn their pay? Did producers treat them fairly?
    Wednesday, Sep 21 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1007 — History Detectives
    What are the details behind the heroic acts pictured in a poster about two African-American soldiers in World War I? Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) helps find the answer. Then, is this a hand-drawn map of Valley Forge that George Washington used during the American Revolution? And does a Tucson man own one of the first transistor radios ever made? Finally, after 70 years, a Washington man wonders whether a business card ties his father to Prohibition-era underworld crime.
    Thursday, Sep 22 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1008 — History Detectives
    The History Detectives investigate four stories from the American West. Did a biography of legendary frontiersman Kit Carson once belong to members of his family? Then, from the rodeo to Hollywood, a saddle tells the story of Yakima Canutt, who made life safer for movie stunt artists. What is the meaning behind the mysterious inscription on sheet music of the popular western song "Tumbling Tumbleweeds"? Finally, did a pivotal character in the Modoc Indian wars weave this basket?
    Friday, Sep 23 at 5am TPT LIFE
  • #1009 — History Detectives
    HISTORY DETECTIVES tells four stories of our nation's beginning. First, Eduardo Pagan starts with a simple bill of sale for a 17-year old "negro girl" and learns how young Willoby's life unfolds from being property to owning property. Then Gwen Wright traces a powder horn from a muddy Minnesota field to a military captain in Massachusetts during the American Revolution. Elyse Luray asks what role a handwritten score played in making "The Star Spangled Banner" our national anthem. Finally, notes in a 1775 almanac show how conflicting loyalties strained family ties during the Revolution.
    Saturday, Sep 24 at 5am TPT LIFE
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