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Unknown History with Giles Milton

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Unknown History provides you with surprising, quirky, and remarkable tales from the past, so you can pretend you paid attention in history class. Hosted by renowned author Giles Milton. To download podcast episodes not shown here, visit QuickandDirty...Show More
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35:28 | May 30th

Today we have a special guest post for Unknown History listeners. David Crowther hosts the History of England podcast, where he delves into England's history from the end of Roman Britain to present day. This episode focuses on Queen Mary, Lady Eliza...Show More

14:24 | Apr 24th

In the last episode from Season 3 of Unknown History, we learn how the American Troops finally won the beach from German defenders at Omaha Beach. This episode was supported by MagellanTV. For an exclusive two-month free trial of all MagellanTV has t...Show More

14:47 | Apr 17th

Today, we hear from the other side of D-Day—the German colonel tasked with driving the Allied forces off the beaches. Could the panzer tank division and its colorful leader turn the tide on June 6, 1944? This episode was supported by MagellanTV. For...Show More

14:59 | Apr 10th

Upon landing at Sword Beach the morning of June 6, 1944, one group of eite British commandos were accompanied by a Highland bagpiper, who emphasized the greatness of their victory. This episode was supported by MagellanTV. For an exclusive two-month ...Show More

14:33 | Apr 3rd

A group of American Rangers, led by the bold James Rudder, were some of the strongest and bravest soldiers in D-Day battles. Learn how they sabotaged a giant stockpile of German weapons aimed at Normandy beaches.

14:27 | Mar 27th

Two brothers, Charles and Elliot Dalton, fought side-by-side on the morning of June 6, 1944, leading the Juno Beach landings.

15:52 | Mar 20th

If you've seen 'Saving Private Ryan,' you know too well the images of the first flight of men invading and dying on the beach on D-Day—today, we learn the true story of that fateful mission.

15:02 | Mar 13th

As dawn broke on June 6, 1944, Allied forces were conducting their first wave of landings on Utah Beach—and quickly realized that a part of their plan had gone very, very wrong.

15:01 | Mar 6th

A few hours before the beach landings at Normandy, Allied troops invaded the Merville Battery—a giant gun encampment—with instructions to destroy it. However, they had hundreds less soldiers than necessary to complete the mission.

14:45 | Feb 27th

As we lead up to the climax of D-Day, we learn about the early hours of June 6, 1944, and the soldiers who executed a mission so dangerous, they expected death.

15:43 | Feb 20th

Hours before the beach landings on D-Day, a group of men underwent a dangerous nighttime mission in France. What happened in that fateful operation?

14:49 | Feb 13th

On June 5, 1944, the night of what was supposed to be D-Day, the five massive fleets heading for the French coast suddenly stopped and turned around—but why?

15:10 | Feb 6th

In part one of our exciting third-season, D-DAY, we learn about George Lane and his extraordinary undercover mission to Nazi-occupied France. Learn more about D-Day by reading this episode's full transcript or picking up the book! Transcript on Q...Show More

11:14 | Jan 17th

Buffalo Bill and Wild Bill were two of the most famous plainsmen of the American West, and also became trusted friends. How did this friendship come to be?  Read the transcript here: https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/history/friendship-i...Show More

11:02 | Jan 10th

Even America Frontier's first and fastest gunslinger had a softer, romantic side—on this episode, we learn about the women that captured Wild Bill Hickok's heart. Tom Clavin tells all in his book Wild Bill. Read the transcript here: https://www.qu...Show More

11:20 | Jan 3rd

The story of Wild Bill Hickok, a legendary gunslinger from the American Frontier, has been largely untold in modern history. Tom Clavin tells all in his book Wild Bill. Read the transcript here: https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/history/...Show More

08:42 | Dec 27th, 2018

In our third installment in the miniseries "The Heroes of Valley Forge," we learn about Baron von Steuben, a conman and spy for the French government whose intense training regimen led Washington's American troops into victory at Valley Forge. Lea...Show More

11:02 | Dec 20th, 2018

In the second installment in our miniseries on the heroes of Valley Forge, we learn about Washington's surrogate sons and the impact they had on the American Revolution. While he didn't have any children of his own, these three young men looked to Wa...Show More

10:03 | Dec 13th, 2018

In the first episode of our miniseries on the Heroes of Valley Forge, we learn that it was during the Valley Forge encampment that Washington was first called the “Father of His Country” because it was there he embodied both the American government a...Show More

11:14 | Dec 6th, 2018

In the final episode of our miniseries on Jack Kelly's The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons, the Gilded Age, and the Greatest Labor Uprising in America, we learn how George Pullman's laborers fought back against his working conditions and wages w...Show More

09:56 | Nov 29th, 2018

In part four of our miniseries on The Edge of Anarchy, author Jack Kelly describes the unfair conditions, significant events, and key people that led to the rise of labor unions in America. Learn more about The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons...Show More

08:55 | Nov 22nd, 2018

In part three of our miniseries on The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons, the Gilded Age, and the Greatest Labor Uprising in America, author Jack Kelly discusses the short reign of George Pullman and his costly attempt for riches. Learn more a...Show More

08:42 | Nov 15th, 2018

In part two of our miniseries on The Edge of Anarchy, author Jack Kelly discusses the ways the Industrial Revolution changed American technology and manufacturing forever. Learn more about The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons, the Gilded Age,...Show More

07:54 | Nov 8th, 2018

In part one of our miniseries on The Edge of Anarchy, author Jack Kelly describes America's love affair with capitalism in the Gilded Age. Learn more about The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons, the Gilded Age, and the Greatest Labor Uprising ...Show More

13:51 | Nov 1st, 2018

In Part 5 of our miniseries on Hitler's American Friends from author Bradley Hart, we learn about famed aviator Charles Lindbergh, one of America's biggest celebrities, and his political campaign of anti-Semitism. Learn more about Hitler's Americ...Show More

11:09 | Oct 25th, 2018

In Part 4 of our miniseries on Hitler's American Friends from author Bradley Hart, we learn how one of the most recognized names in American industry—Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor company—closely aligned himself with Hitler and the Nazi party in ...Show More

12:56 | Oct 18th, 2018

In Part 3 of our miniseries on Hitler's American Friends from author Bradley Hart, we learn about one of the most infamous radio personalities of all time — Father Charles Coughlin. With his platform, he launched a political party aligned with Nazism...Show More

26:47 | Oct 16th, 2018

Listen to a special bonus clip about history's most insane rulers from our friends at the History Unplugged podcast. Learn more about the History Unplugged podcast by going to www.historyunpluggedpodcast.com! Transcript on Quick and Dirty Tips: ...Show More

11:49 | Oct 11th, 2018

Part 2 of our miniseries on Hitler's American Friends from author Bradley Hart, we learn about an American organization that mirrored the Nazi's in ruthlessness, exclusiveness, and terror — The Silver Legions. Embracing lawlessness, violence, and pow...Show More

11:00 | Oct 4th, 2018

In Part 1 of our miniseries on Hitler's American Friends from author Bradley Hart, we learn about the German American Bund, America’s leading organization for German sympathizers and Nazi imitators that could be found goose-stepping and saluting to t...Show More

07:47 | Sep 27th, 2018

In the fifth and final installment of our Frank and Al miniseries, Terry Golway explores how the political ambitions between FDR and Al Smith were set aside during WWII, with the country united behind a common cause. Learn more about Frank and Al...Show More

09:16 | Sep 20th, 2018

In Part 4 of our Frank and Al miniseries, Terry Golway chronicles how most Democrats were met with defeat in the 1928 election season, most except for one man: Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Learn more about Frank and Al: FDR, Al Smith, and the Unlik...Show More

08:30 | Sep 13th, 2018

Despite his illness, FDR proved a strong ally for Al Smith, and visa versa. In Part 3 of our Frank and Al miniseries, we see how these two political powerhouses rewrote what it meant to be a Democrat and an American. Learn more about Frank and Al:...Show More

10:52 | Sep 6th, 2018

FDR tried hard to become a New York politician while still working in Washington, battling the powerhouses of Tammany Hall and eventually succumbing to defeat. Part 2 of our Frank and Al miniseries shows how FDR's loss brought about an unlikely ally....Show More

07:02 | Aug 30th, 2018

In the early 20th century, Franklin Delano Roosevelt decided to make his name in New York politics. In Part 1 of our Frank & Al miniseries, understand the context to the unlikely friendship between FDR and Al Smith. Learn more about Frank and Al:...Show More

23:41 | Aug 24th, 2018

Today's episode is a special preview of Case Closed just for Unknown History listeners. The show covers the murder of Rusty Sneiderman, a Georgia man who was shot in broad daylight in the parking lot of his son's preschool. Who killed Rusty and why? ...Show More

10:58 | Aug 16th, 2018

Vermin, a foul stench, public urination, and bacteria everywhere. These are just some of the things you'd come across in a royal palace, as told by Eleanor Herman in part 5 of her Poison Chronicles, inspired by her book The Royal Art of Poison. Le...Show More

12:09 | Aug 9th, 2018

How dangerous were the cosmetic habits of medieval women? Let's just say you won't find mercury foundation or potions of liquid gold at your nearest Macy's. Welcome to part 4 of Eleanor Herman's Poison Chronicles, inspired by her book The Royal Art o...Show More

12:25 | Aug 2nd, 2018

Eleanor Herman discusses the top treacherous medical treatments and "cannibal cures" from her new book, The Royal Art of Poison. Learn more about The Royal Art of Poison: Filthy Palaces, Fatal Cosmetics, Deadly Medicine, And Murder Most Foul, by r...Show More

14:39 | Jul 26th, 2018

Eleanor Herman describes the role of arsenic in Napoleon Bonapartes's rapid health decline and eventual death while under imprisonment at St. Helen. Learn more about The Royal Art of Poison: Filthy Palaces, Fatal Cosmetics, Deadly Medicine, And Mu...Show More

10:43 | Jul 19th, 2018

Welcome to Part 1 of a bonus Unknown History miniseries: The Poison Chronicles. Eleanor Herman, author of The Royal Art of Poison, discusses the history of poison as a political tool used over centuries. In this first segment, Herman explores the use...Show More

13:37 | Mar 29th, 2018

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickedest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. To view the full transcript, visit here: https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/history/the-glory-days-of-w...Show More

18:02 | Mar 22nd, 2018

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickedest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. To view the full transcript, visit here: https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/history/the-glory-days-of-w...Show More

11:06 | Mar 15th, 2018

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickedest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. To view the full transcript, visit here: https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/history/the-life-and-death-...Show More

12:04 | Jul 6th, 2017

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. Learn more at http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/node/11151

13:36 | Jun 29th, 2017

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. Visit http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/node/11126 to learn even more.

11:30 | Jun 22nd, 2017

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Tom Clavin. Visit http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/node/11031 to learn more.

14:04 | Jun 13th, 2017

Learn more about Dodge City, the wickedest town in the American west, on this new Unknown History miniseries hosted by author Thomas Clavin. Check out the book at www.quickanddirtytips.com/node/10931

09:25 | Mar 16th, 2017

How One Man Deprived Hitler of the Atomic Bomb. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2ny4iz6 Learn more at www.quickanddirtytips.com/giles.

07:30 | Mar 9th, 2017

George Rheam has been called "a large man with a large mind." Learn how he helped Churchill's Ministry of Ungentlmanly Warfare by inventing forms of industrial sabotage. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2mX67IE

08:09 | Mar 2nd, 2017

Of all the people who worked for Winston Churchill’s Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare, Eric Sykes and William Fairbairn were by far the most extraordinary. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2m90qoy

08:57 | Feb 23rd, 2017

Millis Jefferis joined the top secret guerilla unit, MIR in the spring of 1939. Hear the full story of the Unknown History podcast. Read more at www.quickanddirtytips.com/unknown-history. Learn about Giles' books at www.quickanddirtytips.com/giles. R...Show More

08:51 | Feb 16th, 2017

In 1939, tensions across Europe were mounting as the dominance of Hitler and the Nazi Party grew unchecked. But when one man was tasked by William Churchill to devise an innovative strategy for fighting the Nazis, the outcome was a new kind of warfar...Show More

09:57 | Feb 9th, 2017

In the spring of 1939, a seemingly ordinary father and automobile mechanic became vital in the development of lethal weapons to aid the British fight against Hitler's expanding naval forces. Meet Cecil Clarke—and be sure to listen to the full story o...Show More

06:18 | Feb 2nd, 2017

In 1931, a lawyer named Hans Litten squared off against Hitler in court. What was the outcome? Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2cYves2 For more, visit www.quickanddirtytips.com...Show More

15:23 | Jan 27th, 2017

Guy Burgess was arguably the most influential spy of the Cambridge Five, a covert group of Englishmen who traded Western secrets to the Soviets before and during the Cold War. And yet, 70 years after the height of his espionage, Burgess' name and leg...Show More

06:00 | Jan 19th, 2017

Nobody expected Warren G Harding to win the presidency of the United States; his candidacy was so unlikely to succeed that he was mocked in the nation's newspapers. So, how did this outsider become president? Read the full transcript here: http://bit...Show More

26:32 | Jan 12th, 2017

Queen Victoria's public legacy is often of the doting grandmother, or the stodgy old woman. Daisy Goodwin—author of Victoria and screenwriter for the PBS Series of the same name—talks to Unknown History's Giles Milton about the misconceptions surroun...Show More

05:56 | Jan 5th, 2017

Learn the story of when Churchill slaughtered sheep this week on the Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2jrVEUy

04:21 | Dec 29th, 2016

When most people think of Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr, they think of the famous duel that ended in Hamilton's death. But very few people know the duel's extraordinary backstory. In the Unknown History podcast, Giles Milton recounts this tale, r...Show More

04:42 | Dec 8th, 2016

In 1907, a carriage transporting over one million roubles (approximately $9 million) to the new State Bank was robbed. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2hHnr1c

05:48 | Nov 17th, 2016

After a killer whale attack, a family found themselves adrift in the middle of the Pacific ocean. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read more at www.quickanddirtytips.com/unknown-history. Check out Giles' books at www.qu...Show More

05:38 | Nov 10th, 2016

Hear the whole story of Operation Pastorius in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Visit www.quickanddirtytips.com/unknown-history for more. Full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2flYAMQ

05:24 | Nov 3rd, 2016

The USS Pueblo was sent to the North Korean coast to gather intelligence on the country's secret communications. Capture was not part of the plan. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Listen and read more at www.quickanddir...Show More

05:46 | Oct 27th, 2016

Among P.O. Box 1142's high-ranking prisoners was the man who had developed the V1 and V2 rockets that had reduced parts of London to rubble. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/...Show More

06:45 | Oct 21st, 2016

Many lives were lost in what has come to be known as the most spectacular air disaster of the twentieth century. But a 14-year-old boy managed to escape the wreck. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read more at www.quick...Show More

05:23 | Oct 14th, 2016

The Lebensborn program's goal was to produce a stock of children suitable for Hitler's vision for the future of Germany. But what happened to these children? Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript her...Show More

05:31 | Oct 6th, 2016

In August 1911, Vincenzo Peruggia walked out of the Louvre with the Mona Lisa hidden under his jacket. How was the world's most famous painting later recovered? Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read more quirky stories ...Show More

06:32 | Sep 15th, 2016

One night in March 1978, two criminals entered the Corsier-sur-Vevey cemetery and stole Charlie Chaplin's coffin. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2cUE6LY Read more at www.quick...Show More

05:49 | Sep 8th, 2016

It was just supposed to be a practice drill for D-Day, but it turned out to be much more. Hear the whole story in Giles Milton's Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2cnuzu3

05:02 | Sep 1st, 2016

Have you heard the odd tale of the "Emperor of the United States"? Hear the full story in Giles Milton's Unknown History Podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2c2wgN0

02:57 | Aug 18th, 2016

Pastor Archie Mitchell had promised his wife, Elsie, a treat. Both of them were tired of reading newspaper articles about the war in the Far East. On Saturday, 5 May, 1945, Archie suggested a day of escapism, driving up into the mountains of southern...Show More

05:11 | Aug 11th, 2016

Giles Milton, host of the Unknown History podcast, talks with Jack Kelly about his new book, Heaven's Ditch: God, Gold, and Murder on the Erie Canal. Below is a short excerpt from the book. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2b80mB2

02:18 | Aug 4th, 2016

Who was the last eunuch of China? Giles Milton explores on the Unknown History podcast. For more visit quickanddirtytips.com/unknown-history. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/2b4Micd

02:41 | Jul 21st, 2016

You already heard about Sergeant Stubby in a previous episode of Unknown History. Hear more about this incredible pup's story during WWI. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/29YeOsi

03:51 | Jul 8th, 2016

His home was a dense area of rainforest and he lived on the wild coconuts that grew in abundance. His principal enemy was the army of mosquitoes that arrived with each new shower of rain. But for Hiroo Onoda, there was another enemy, one that remaine...Show More

08:55 | Jun 30th, 2016

Uncover the story behind Wall Street's first black millionaire, Jeremiah G. Hamilton, in an interview with Prince of Darkness author Shane White on the Unknown History podcast. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/29JBilV

03:48 | Jun 23rd, 2016

He kept his identity a secret until his dying day. None of his neighbors in Patchogue, Long Island, had any idea that William Stuart Houston was actually born William Hitler. Read more transcripts from Unknown History at www.quickanddirtytips.com/...Show More

03:13 | May 26th, 2016

Here's the story of how one captain went to murderous lengths to make a profit while transporting a ship full of slaves across the Atlantic, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, the basis for the podcas...Show More

03:29 | May 19th, 2016

Here's the story of the first celebrity kidnapping of aviator Charles Lindbergh's son, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, the basis for the podcast, Unknown History. Read the full transcript here: htt...Show More

03:56 | May 12th, 2016

Where is Lenin’s brain and why was it removed from his corpse? Learn the strange story of what happened after his death and the startling truth scientists concluded about his brain, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain ...Show More

05:55 | May 5th, 2016

Many had tried, but none succeeded in escaping the high security prison. That is, until three criminals disappeared from their jail cells one summer evening. Read the full transcript here: http://bit.ly/1WZrEeo

06:14 | Apr 28th, 2016

It’s not everyday that someone confesses to a murder they most certainly did not commit. Who was Prince Felix Yusupov covering up for? Find out in this story, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, the ba...Show More

04:54 | Apr 21st, 2016

Here's the story of how one dog rose to the rank of sergeant in the United States Army during World War I, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, the basis for the podcast, Unknown History. Read the full ...Show More

04:17 | Apr 14th, 2016

How one woman successfully hid her identity and joined the fight during World War I, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, which is the basis for a new podcast, Unknown History. Read the full transcript ...Show More

04:42 | Apr 6th, 2016

Learn the bizarre story of Hitler’s physician, Theodor Morell, and the vast array of drugs he prescribed the infamous dictator, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, which is the basis for our new podcas...Show More

04:26 | Apr 6th, 2016

Agatha Christie might be known for writing great mysteries, but none are quite as perplexing as her own 11-day disappearance—as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, which is the basis for a new podcast, Un...Show More

05:39 | Apr 6th, 2016

How did one Titanic crew member survive the icy ocean water, all thanks to his favorite drink? Learn this story, as excerpted from When Hitler Took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain by Giles Milton, which is the basis for our new podcast, Unknown Hist...Show More

00:06 | Feb 1st, 2016

Get the transcript of this podcast, and many other Quick and Dirty Tips Podcasts, at QuickAndDirtyTips.com