His exploits on the American frontier inspired dozens of dime novels. But the stories told in these wildly popular books belie the complexities of the real Kit Carson, whose life embodies the contradictions in the story of the American West.
An illiterate mountain man, he was fluent in Spanish and five Indian languages; he twice married Native American women, yet led a brutal war against the Navajo. When the West was a mystery to most Americans, Carson mastered it, and his expertise made him not only famous, but also sought after. Eventually, by helping to spur a migration that would change the West forever, he unwittingly became an agent in the destruction of the life he loved.
Combining rich archival materials of the period with original recreations this AMERICAN EXPERIENCE production brings the legendary trapper, scout, and soldier to vivid life, and provides a lens on a pivotal but little-understood era in American history.
A brilliant scientist, Oppenheimer was tasked with the development of the atomic bomb during World War II.
In 1897, Arctic explorer Robert Peary caused a sensation when he returned from Greenland with five Eskimos.
Bascom Lamar Lunsford and his campaign to preserve mountain music and dance.
The Alabama governor and presidential candidate promised segregation forever.
The Chiricahua Apache medicine man and warrior who refused to accept white man's 'civilization.' Part of The Wild West collection.
This stunning film portrait of Yosemite National Park uses the 1851 diary of the first expedition of soldiers into the Native American territory.
America's Robin Hood who robbed not only the rich but the poor and defenseless as well, always saving the treasure for himself. Part of the Wild West collection.
A biography of the last outlaws of the American Wild West