Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS
Some stories can't just be told. They must be experienced. Main Navigation Teachers
THEMATIC: Popular Culture:

Arts and Entertainment  |   Crime and Punishment  |  
The Great Depression  |   Immigrant Experience  |   Spiritualism  |   Sports

Annie Oakley

Annie Oakley
The star attraction of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, Annie Oakley thrilled audiences around the world with her daring shooting feats. Her act helped fuel turn-of-the-century nostalgia for the vanished, mythical world of the American West.
More InformationLaunch Web SiteBuy the VideoTeachers GuideWatch the Promo

In 1926, just a few months before her death, Will Rogers described Annie Oakley as "the greatest woman rifle shot the world has ever produced." As the star attraction of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, she thrilled audiences around the world with her daring shooting feats. Her act helped fuel turn-of-the-century nostalgia for the vanished, mythical world of the American West. Over time she became an American legend -- the loud, brassy, cocksure shooter celebrated in the musical "Annie Get Your Gun." But that legend had little to do with the real Annie Oakley.

Forever Baseball (no website available)
A wry philosophical essay on what makes baseball the great American pastime.
More Information

There is hardly a city, town or village without a baseball diamond. More than a game, baseball is a tradition, rite of passage, an enduring passion, a code for understanding the culture. A wry, philosophical essay on what makes baseball the great American pastime.
Joe DiMaggio: The Hero's Life

Joe DiMaggio: The Hero's Life
A man of public triumphs and private pain.
More InformationLaunch Web SiteTeachers Guide

He was one of the greatest sports heroes ever -- and one of the most unlikely. Raised in a poor Italian fishing community in San Francisco, Joe DiMaggio joined the New York Yankees in 1936 and quickly rose to become the star of baseball's golden age. He was graceful, elegant, and inspiring; his 56-game hitting streak electrified the nation. But Joe was always obsessed with being perfect, and over time became bitter and cynical about his celebrity. After his tumultuous marriage to Marilyn Monroe, he turned to cashing in on his fame.

Knute Rockne and His Fighting Irish (no website available)
Knute Rockne, a pivotal figure in the sudden rise of sports to a position of enormous power in American life.
More InformationBuy the Video

When he died in 1931 in a plane crash on his way to Hollywood to sign a film contract, the President called it a "national loss." The funeral was broadcast live on CBS Radio to Europe, South America and Asia. As Notre Dame's football coach, Knute Rockne galvanized attention to his "Fighting Irish" and was a pivotal figure in the sudden rise of sports to a position of enormous power in American life.
Roberto Clemente

Roberto Clemente
The exceptional baseball player and humanitarian whose career sheds light on larger issues of immigration, civil rights and cultural change.
More InformationLaunch Web SiteBuy the VideoTeachers GuideWatch the Promo

On New Year's Eve 1972, Roberto Clemente, a thirty-seven-year-old baseball player for the Pittsburgh Pirates, boarded a DC-7 loaded with relief supplies for earthquake victims in Managua, Nicaragua. A native of Puerto Rico, Clemente had established a special relief fund for his devastated neighbors. Shortly after takeoff the plane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, a mile off the Puerto Rican coast. Clemente's body was never found. Roberto Clemente's untimely death brought an end to a spectacular career. In his eighteen seasons with the Pirates, he led the team to two World Series championships, won four National League batting titles, received the Most Valuable Player award, and earned twelve Gold Gloves.
Seabiscuit

Seabiscuit
The long shot horse that captured America's heart.
More InformationLaunch Web SiteBuy the VideoTeachers GuideWatch the Promo

He was boxy, with stumpy legs that wouldn't completely straighten, a short straggly tail and an ungainly gait, but though he didn't look the part, Seabiscuit was one of the most remarkable thoroughbred racehorses in history.In the 1930s, when Americans longed to escape the grim realities of Depression-era life, four men turned Seabiscuit into a national hero. They were fabulously wealthy owner Charles Howard, silent and stubborn trainer Tom Smith, and the two hard-bitten, gifted jockeys who rode him to glory. By following the paths that brought these four together and in telling the story of Seabiscuit's unlikely career, this film illuminates the precarious economic conditions that defined America in the 1930s and explores the fascinating behind-the-scenes world of thoroughbred racing.
The Fight

The Fight
Joe Louis and Max Schmeling fought for their people, and for their nations on the brink of war. Most of all, they fought for themselves.
More InformationLaunch Web SiteBuy the VideoTeachers GuideWatch the Promo

On June 22, 1938, 70,000 fans crammed into Yankee Stadium to watch what some observers have since called "the most important sporting event in history." Millions more tuned in to hear a blow-by-blow description on the radio.The rematch between the African American heavyweight Joe Louis and his German opponent Max Schmeling was riveting -- "one hundred and twenty-four seconds of murder," as one newspaper put it. But for most spectators the fight was much more than a boxing match; it was an historic event freighted with symbolic significance, both a harbinger of the civil rights movement and a prelude to World War II.In this first feature-length documentary about the momentous encounter, American Experience captures the anticipation the bout generated, the swirl of events leading up to it, the impact Louis's victory had on black America and its significance for Jews on both sides of the Atlantic.
THEMATIC: Popular Culture:

Arts and Entertainment  |   Crime and Punishment  |  
The Great Depression  |   Immigrant Experience  |   Spiritualism  |   Sports

Who We Are Schedule Archives Kids Teachers Contact Us Shop