Films: 1800 - 1900
Browse the entire American Experience series featuring over 250 films. Watch full films online, download teacher’s guides, go behind the scenes, and learn more about your favorite films.
In the early 1830s, Texas, ruled by Mexico, held 20,000 U.S. settlers and 4,000 Mexican Tejanos, forcing residents to pick sides.
A look at the poor Scottish emigrant boy who built a fortune in telegraphy, railroads and steel, and then began systematically to give it all away.
Robert E. Lee : 90 mins
Robert E. Lee, the leading Confederate general of the American Civil War, remains a source of fascination and, for some, veneration.
The Rockefellers : 2 hrs
Head of the most powerful family in America, billionaire John D. Rockefeller's vast philanthropy changed his family's reputation.
Men and women, black and white, risked their lives to carve an elaborate network of escape routes out of slavery.
Engineer James Eads tamed the mighty Mississippi, turning New Orleans into the second largest port in the nation.
Sins of Our Mothers : 1 hr
The legendary tale of Emeline Gurney, who - as the story goes - sold an illegitimate child at the age of 14 only to marry him at a later age.
America's first great songwriter, Stephen Foster, wrote 200 songs but died a penniless alcoholic at 37.
Telegrams from the Dead : 1 hr
A new religion called spiritualism affected the nation in the era of Abraham Lincoln, P. T. Barnum and Frederick Douglass.
Though first seen only as an expensive luxury, Alexander Graham Bell's telephone soon transformed American life and became a necessity.
Tesla : 1 hr
Meet the genius engineer and inventor whose technology helped create our wireless world.
The remarkable story of how a railroad was built connecting California to the East.
U.S. Grant: Warrior : 90 mins
A revealing portrait of one of America's most paradoxical leaders.
The journey of Prince Maximilian, German naturalist, and artist Karl Bodmer, who explored the Mississippi River area from 1832-1834.
Today one of the most-recognized figures in American literary history, poet Walt Whitman was denounced by critics in his own time.
War Letters : 1 hr
From the Revolutionary War to Operation Desert Storm - newly discovered letters read by celebrity actors tell of courage, longing, and sacrifice.
The Way West : 6 hrs
A six-hour series on how the West was lost and won, from the Gold Rush in 1848 until Wounded Knee in 1893.
We Shall Remain : 5 hrs
The story of Native peoples’ valiant resistance to expulsion from their lands and the extinction of their culture.
The tale of oil-seeking mavericks whose risk-taking, sweat and dreams changed an American industry.
George Eastman introduced the Kodak and Brownie camera systems and transformed photography into something anybody could do.
Brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright built a flying machine that made its first flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1903.
Wyatt Earp : 1 hr
A central figure in the narrative of how the west was won, Wyatt Earp and his story became an American legend. 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.