Premiering on PBS May 1, 2012. The most famous athlete of his time, his stunning triumph at the 1936 Olympic Games captivated the world even as it infuriated the Nazis. Despite the racial slurs he endured, Jesse Owens' grace and athleticism rallied crowds across the globe. But when the four-time Olympic gold medalist returned home, he could not even ride in the front of a bus. The story of the 22-year-old son of a sharecropper who triumphed over adversity to become a hero and world champion, Jesse Owens is also about the elusive, fleeting quality of fame and the way Americans idolize athletes when they suit our purpose, and forget them once they don't.
A civil rights leader in Harlem before entering politics, Powell was one of the most charismatic black leaders of the 20th century.
Roman Catholic priest Father Charles Coughlin used the power of radio to rail against the nation's economic system in the Depression.
The first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, Earhart disappeared in 1937 during an attempt to circumnavigate the world by airplane.
The grave truth behind modern forensics was discovered in 1920s New York.
America came apart in 1964 and has since been reborn.
The influential musical pioneers from Appalachia whose recordings lifted spirits during the Great Depression.
The international manhunt to catch the killer of Martin Luther King.
The true story behind the most romanticized, infamous outlaw couple in U.S. history and their gang.