The Orphan Trains
Part of the Series: American Experience

PBS
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The Orphan Trains
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West by Orphan Train
It seems incomprehensible that there was a time in America's not-so-distant past when nearly a quarter of a million children from East Coast orphanages were loaded on trains and sent west, where they were presented "for the picking." West by Orphan Train will tell the story of these children, who…
Coney Island
Part of the Series: American Experience
"It is blatant, it is cheap, it is the apotheosis of the ridiculous. But it is something more; it is like Niagara Falls or the Grand Canyon or Yellowstone Park; it is a national playground, and not to have seen it is not to have seen your own country," said…
Lost in the Grand Canyon
Part of the Series: American Experience
In the spring of 1869, a thirty-five-year-old, one-armed Civil War veteran and self-taught scientist led an expedition down the Colorado River into the last uncharted territory in the United States. Ninety-nine days later, John Wesley Powell emerged from the Grand Canyon after one of the most daring journeys in American…
Triangle Fire - A Deadly Factory Accident in New York
Part of the Series: American Experience
It was the deadliest workplace accident in New York City's history. A dropped match on the 8th floor of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory sparked a fire that killed over a hundred innocent people trapped inside. The private industry of the American factory would never be the same.
Homeless
YOU CAN'T ASK THAT That asks homeless people the awkward, inappropriate or uncomfortable questions you've always wanted to know the answers to, but never had the guts to ask.
Edison - The Father of Invention
Part of the Series: American Experience
By the time he died in 1931, Thomas Edison was one of the most famous men in the world. The holder of more patents than any other inventor in history, Edison had amassed a fortune and achieved glory as the genius behind such revolutionary inventions as sound recording, motion pictures,…
The Big Burn
Part of the Series: American Experience
In the summer of 1910, hundreds of wildfires raged across the Northern Rockies. By the time it was all over, more than three million acres had burned and at least 78 firefighters were dead. It was the largest fire in American history. "Big Burn" premieres February 3, 2015 on PBS…
The Country and the City - 1609-1825
Part of the Series: American Experience: New York
The series begins by identifying the key themes that shaped New York's history: commerce and capitalism, diversity and democracy, transformation and creativity. The episode charts the development of the city founded by the Dutch as a purely commercial enterprise, first as New Amsterdam, a freewheeling enclave of trade and opportunity;…
Order and Disorder - 1825-1865
Part of the Series: American Experience: New York
Already established as America's premier port, New York City swelled into the nation's greatest industrial metropolis as a massive wave of German and Irish immigration turned the city into one of the world's most complex urban environments, bringing with it a host of new social problems. Episode Two reveals how…
Sunshine and Shadow - 1865-1898
Part of the Series: American Experience: New York
Now the spotlight shines on the growth, glamour and grief of New York during America's giddy postwar "Gilded Age." Exploring the incomparable wealth of the robber barons and the unabashed corruption of political leaders, such as Tammany Hall boss William M. Tweed, the episode examines the era when the expansion…
The Power and the People - 1898-1918
Part of the Series: American Experience: New York
As New York spilled into the new century, the extraordinary interplay of capitalism, democracy and transformation surged to a climax. During a single generation, over 10 million immigrants arrived in New York. The city itself became an even more dramatic lure with the construction of the first subways and skyscrapers.…
Cosmopolis - 1918-1931
Part of the Series: American Experience: New York
During the fifth episode, the post-war economic boom, the rise of consumer culture, and the birth of new mass-media industries fuel the convergence of an incredible array of human and cultural energies, ending with the Crash of 1929 and the construction of the Empire State Building.