18th Century

The Whiskey Rebellion

Resistance to excise taxes levied against U.S. whiskey distilleries in the 1790s led to violence and rebellion. Tensions finally came to a head on Christmas day in 1794. Read the show notes here.

St. Clair's Defeat, or the Battle of a Thousand Slain

In 1791, a confederation of Native American tribes destroyed about half of the American army. The catalyst for that conflict was a lengthy period in which unfair treaties, biased against native peoples, were all too common.

The Black Hole of Calcutta

In 1756, after a skirmish between the British East India Company and the nawab of Bengal, dozens of captives were put into a holding cell intended for only a few people overnight. Most of them didn't make it out alive.

The Battle of Guilford Courthouse

In 1781, British forces shifted their efforts in the American Revolutionary War to the southern states. Major General Nathaniel Greene and his troops went up against Charles Cornwallis in a battle that was won on a technicality.

The Amazons of Dahomey

The kingdom of Dahomey may have had the world's first full-time, all-female combat fighting force. How did these women rise to become some of history's fiercest warriors, and what happened to them?

Dahomey and the Royal Palaces of Abomey

The Royal Palaces of Abomey are a series of earthen palaces in what is now Benin. The complex is culturally and historically important to West Africa, but the source of much of the wealth that built those palaces was the Atlantic slave trade. Read the show notes here.

Olive Oatman

In 1851, Olive Oatman's family was attacked while traveling near the Gila River in Arizona. Olive was taken by her attackers, and lived for five years with Native Americans before being ransomed by the U.S. government.


Hokusai lived during a time when there wasn't a lot of contact between Japan and the West. But even so, he drew influence form Western art, and Western art was greatly influenced by his own work.

Beast of Gevaudan

Attacks on women and children of Gevaudan in the 1760s sparked a huge effort to hunt and kill the mystery beast behind them. While efforts to track the animal struggled, France was gripped in terror. Read the show notes here.

The Lady Juliana

Great Britain didn't only send criminals to Australia as punishment; they also wanted to colonize the continent. But to do that, they had to send women in addition to men. This plan involved some unsettling facts, and had some unexpected consequences. Read the show notes here.