10 Best History Podcasts of All Time
While the world is facing a global crisis and a political reckoning, understanding the past can help us grasp the difficult present and possibly foresee the future.
These top history podcasts are far from your dry history textbooks. Not only do they revisit history in interesting and entertaining ways, but they’ll bring the past back to life. You’ve probably heard of top-rated history podcasts like The Dollop, Revisionist History or Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History, but there are so many other unmissible tales out there!
These best history podcasts recommended by Podyssey’s community of history buffs will help you rethink history in a whole different way. Whether you're looking for a short history podcast, world history podcast, or American history, you can brush up on your knowledge of the American presidency, world war I, Black history and beyond. Also, don’t miss out on some cool history podcasts about 90’s pop culture, music history, art history, and food history!
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1. Hardcore History
In "Hardcore History", Dan Carlin takes his unorthodox way of thinking and applies it to the past from WW1 to the Holocaust. This isn't academic history, but the podcast's unique blend of high drama, masterful narration and Twilight Zone-style twists has entertained millions of listeners.
2. Stuff You Missed in History Class
From the history of eugenics to the bizarre and bewildering history of godzilla and donuts, two women history podcasters bring you stories of the past you definitely missed in history class in one of the most interesting history podcasts.
3. The Memory Palace
The Memory Palace is a great history podcast that was a finalist for the 2016 Peabody Award and one of iTunes Best Podcasts of 2015. Short, surprising stories of the past that’s sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes hysterical, and often a little bit of both. Critics say it’s one of "the most potent pieces of audio being produced today."
4. The Dollop
In The Dollop, comedians Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds pick a subject typically from American history and examine it at great length. Each episode centers around an event or person selected for its humorousness or peculiarity.
Millions of treasures fill the Smithsonian’s vaults, but where public view ends, Sidedoor begins. With the help of biologists, artists, historians, archaeologists, zookeepers and astrophysicists, host Tony Cohn sneaks listeners through Smithsonian’s side door to search for stories that can’t be found anywhere else.
6. History of the 90’s
Travel back in time through the stories that defined a decade in this cool history podcast. The last 10 years of the 20th century was a time like no other.rom Columbine to Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Seinfeld, Air Jordan, and the Spice Girls…if it happened in the 90’s you’ll hear about it on this podcast.
7. You’re Dead to Me
You’re Dead to Me is a BBC radio 4 history podcast made for people who don’t like history… and those who do. Greg Jenner brings together the best names in comedy and history from Joan of Arc to Ghengis Khan and young Napoleon. Get ready to learn and laugh about the past.
8. Ridiculous History
History is beautiful, brutal and, often, ridiculous. Join Ben Bowlin and Noel Brown in the best weird history podcast on stories across the span of human civilization.
Presidential is a good american history podcast and political history podcast exploring how each former American president reached office, made decisions, handled crises and redefined the role of commander-in-chief.
10. Historically Black
If you’re looking for podcasts about Black history, begin with Historically Black. As part of The Washington Post's coverage of the Smithsonian's new National Museum of African American History and Culture, people submitted dozens of objects that make up their own lived experiences of African American history, creating a "people's museum" of personal objects, family photos and more. The Historically Black podcast brings those objects and their stories to life through interviews, archival sound and music.
For more best history podcasts, enjoy these podcast playlists curated by Podyssey community members: