Cover art for podcast The Past and The Curious: A History Podcast for Kids and Families

The Past and The Curious: A History Podcast for Kids and Families

66 EpisodesProduced by Mick SullivanWebsite

A History Podcast for Kids! Parents love us, Teachers love us, and most importantly, kids do too!History can be amazing, inspiring and relevant to anyone. We love to share the stories of Spies, funny foods, George Washington's foibles, early advancements in cartooning and ballooning and much more! … read more

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Episode 59: Safety with Books

August 30th, 2021


The 1939 World's Fair brought a special visitor from England: an original copy of Magna Carta, but with World War II in full swing, America couldn't …

Episode 58 Origin Stories And Gold Medals

July 29th, 2021


Origin stories, comic mis-starts, and medal-winning moments are highlighted in this episode featuring two unlikely international star athletes.

Canada's Bobbie Rosenfeld overcame, among other things, small pox and very …

Bonus Episode! Knox Says Yes

July 3rd, 2021


Henry Knox is a name not many people know, but he was a pretty amazing bookseller turned soldier during the Revolutionary War. Released in honor of …

Episode 57: On Horseback!

June 28th, 2021


This episode tells the stories of Sibyl Ludington and Charley Willis. Sybil's well-known story is amazing, yet it lacks a lot of primary sources, and we use that as a way to introduce thinking about the past with a …

Episode 56 Eugene And Django in Paris

May 26th, 2021


Django Reinhardt was a Romani musician who, despite losing the use of two of his fingers was one of the most important musicians of his time.

His …

Episode 55 Telescopes And Stars

April 27th, 2021


Edwin Hubble changed our view of the Solar System, but he was also a collegiate National Champion basketball player and high school coach. He also …

Episode 54: Gold!

March 26th, 2021


Levi Strauss left his native Germany to escape discrimination, and then left New York for the opportunities of the American West. He lost some gold, …

Episode 53: Sophie And Willa

February 24th, 2021


No one could have predicted that Sophie Blanchard would become France's leading aeronaut, but she flew higher than any woman before her.

Willa Brown …

Episode 52 Food Fight

January 26th, 2021


The Oyster Pirates of the Chesapeake Bay contend with the Toe Nail Governor and his mission to protect the oysters from extinction.

A few years later, a new Food Fight erupts in middle America. This one is about …

Episode 51: Roller Skates And Atomic Power

December 22nd, 2020


John Joseph Merlin created automata, musical instruments, clocks, and one of the first pairs of roller skates. His roller skate debut was pretty …

Episode 50: Let's Dance!

November 29th, 2020


Maria Tallchief was a member of the Osage nation who happened to become the first major American ballet dancer. Her story is read by Ashley Thursby, a dancer with The Louisville Ballet.

The Dancing Plague of 1518 began …

Episode 49: Under Your Feet

October 28th, 2020


This episode is about places that used to be and which are now covered up by something new.

Yarrow Mamout was an unusual man in early America, but the black business leader's story was literally buried by buildings near …

Episode 48: Great Moments in Communication!

September 29th, 2020


The Transatlantic Cable connected North America and Europe, allowing for communication like never before (at least for a few weeks). It sure wasn't …

Episode 47 Leonardo!

August 28th, 2020


Leonardo da Vinci had some wins and some losses, but his impact was enormous. He kinda sorta finished a painting of a lady named Lisa that wound up in the King of France's bathroom.
Centuries later a man named Vincenzo …

Episode 46 Deliveries!

July 28th, 2020


Mary Fields was known as Stagecoach Mary, and her story is one of the great tales of the West.
Likewise, Owney the dog, always captures the imagination.
Michael Fleming, reads the story of Owney, and Melly Victor of …

Episode 45: Parents!

June 29th, 2020


Parents can be pretty amazing sometimes - these two stories feature parents who went above and beyond for their kids and their community. Ada Blackjack was an Inupiat woman who was the only survivor of an extreme Arctic …

Episode 44: Freight Train

May 29th, 2020


Elizabeth Cotten became a music star pretty late in her life. In fact, she was a grandmother. But when she was 11 she wrote a song that made it's way across the ocean and was learned by a band called The Quarrymen, who …

Episode 43: Hands!

April 22nd, 2020


A Special Episode for April of 2020. Join us as we meet Ignaz Semmelweis, Florence Nightingale, John Snow, and also a woman named Mary Mallon, who - for better or for worse - is now remembered as "Typhoid Mary."

Episode 42: Bears!

April 15th, 2020


Join Mick Sullivan for a story about the first bear in Theodore Roosevelt's life, a bear named Jonathan Edwards, and then the second bear in his life …

Episode 41: OK BLOOMER!

March 10th, 2020


Amelia Bloomer helped change the world with a pair of underpants (which she didn't even invent). Among other things, it helped women ride bikes, and this led to a new independence in the late 1800's. Many women (even …

Episode 40 Robert Smalls And Basketballs

February 20th, 2020


The Harlem Globetrotters were more than a show. They were an incredible barnstorming team who helped integrate the NBA.
Told by Mick Sullivan with …

Episode 39 The Astronomer and the Photographer

January 25th, 2020


Eadweard Muybridge made history with his photos, including one of a running horse. It's more interesting than it sounds.

Tycho Brahe lost his nose, …

Episode 38 Store Windows and Old Underwear

December 19th, 2019


L. Frank Baum, an author of a classic book (which became a classic movie) was also partially responsible for our love of fancy holiday shop windows.

Episode 37 Sewer Water and Water Water

November 30th, 2019


John Wesley Powell is the first American of European descent to conquer the Grand Canyon, and he did it with one arm!

Also, Paris was a pretty stinky place until they upgraded the sewers. Learn about poop, nightmen, and …

Episode 36 Mechanical Monsters!

October 29th, 2019


Mary Shelley didn't just create one of the most memorable characters and important books in history, she also pretty-much invented science fiction. Heather Gotlib tells her original story on the author of Frankenstein.

Episode 35: Polymaths!

September 26th, 2019


A polymath is a person of wide ranging knowledge or ability, and in this episode we're telling the stories of two unsung polymaths.

Joseph Bologne, …

Special Episode Otzi and Tumble!

September 6th, 2019


We’re sharing this special episode with our friends from Tumble, A Science Podcast for Kids.

First you’ll hear Mick’s telling of the discovery and disagreement about Otzi the Iceman.

Then we turn it over to Lindsay and …

Episode 34: Museum Tales!

August 14th, 2019


Isabella Stewart Gardner was a very unusual lady who created an incredible museum in Boston. Unfortunately some of her paintings have gone missing.

Charles Wilson Peale painted people, but he also created America's first …

Episode 33: Prairie Dogs and Animal Bands

June 20th, 2019


Mick Sullivan tells a story of the Prairie Dog who wound up on the Lewis and Clark Journey and had one of the most eventful lives imaginable.

Heather …

Episode 32: Strange Things

May 16th, 2019


The long awaited episode to coincide with the release of our book "The Meatshower!"

Mr. Eric from What If World tells he's tory of Boston's Great …

Ep. 31 April Fooling!

April 9th, 2019


It's Kids Listen Sweeps Month and we're joining the April Fool's fun (though pretty late).

This episode features Heather Gotlib's original story of …

Ep. 30 Underwater!

March 19th, 2019


Celebrate the big 3-0 with us as we head underwater. Brian West tells the story of Garrett Morgan, an inventor and brave man who created some really …

Ep. 29 Happy Birthday, Athena!

February 14th, 2019


Patty Hill (with the help of her sister Margaret) did much more than just write Happy Birthday, but that'd be achievement enough. Story by Heather …

Ep. 28: Trains And Movies!

January 14th, 2019


In this episode, Mr. Eric of What If World  joins us to share the story of early moving pictures, including an often told (but probably untrue) story …

Ep. 27: Toys And Games

December 5th, 2018


We're digging through the inductees of the Toy Hall of Fame to find great stories that span Abraham Lincoln to Frank Lloyd Wright and beyond.
Learn …

Ep. 26: Lily May, Clara, and Leon

November 7th, 2018


The people of the late 1930's saw some fun music made by some remarkable women.
Lily May Ledford and her band from Pinchem Tight Holler, KY (YEOW!!) …

Ep. 25: Fakes And Frauds!

October 8th, 2018


Some people just can't be honest, and some try to pass off something phony as something real. This episode is about a would-be Shakespeare named …

Ep. 24: Shipwrecks! Ep. 24: Shipwrecks! Ida Lewis, Marquis de Lafayette, Sail Away Ladies

September 6th, 2018


Join host Mick Sullivan and friend Hanna Zimmerman of Locust Grove as we share the stories of Marquis de Lafayette's steamboat shipwreck, and Rhode …

Ep. 23: Hot Dog! A Tale of Kings, Queens, Dead Whales, and Johnny Verbek's Machine

July 17th, 2018


From the electric bathers of Coney Island to the King of England, no food has been as satisfying as a hot dog. You won't believe it as we weave a tale of dead whales, muckrakers, publicity stunts, and President …

Ep. 22: Play Ball! Jackie Mitchell, Moe Berg, Summertime and more

June 13th, 2018


You don't have to like baseball to like this episode!
First, Kelly Moore shares the story of Jackie Mitchell, a young woman who struck out both Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.
Next, Bailey Mazik of the Louisville Slugger …

Ep. 21: Journeys! Horatio and Bud, John Ledyard and more!

May 21st, 2018


The history podcast for kids and adults joins the Kids Listen Sweeps party and tells two stories about two great adventures. Melinda Beck tells the …

Ep. 20: Bridges - Emily Roebling, Sonny Rollins and more!

April 6th, 2018


Join us for two tales connected by bridges. First, Emily Roebling winds up as a lead engineer in the building of the Brooklyn Bridge, the first …

Ep.19 The Statue Of Liberty!

March 7th, 2018


The Statue of Liberty could have wound up in Egypt, Philadelphia, or the bottom of the ocean. Once she wound up in New York she had to wait for …

Ep. 18: Music! Marian Anderson, The Great Caruso and more!

February 7th, 2018


Episode 18 of the most engaging history podcast for kids!
Did the invention of the record player make an opera singer named Enrique Caruso the first superstar of music? It might just have.
What did Marian Anderson do …

Ep. 17 Spies!

January 6th, 2018


Kate Warne saved Abraham Lincoln's life on the way to his inauguration. John Honeyman may (or may not)have been a double agent who helped George …

Christmas Special 2018 - Mummies and Bladders!

December 15th, 2017


Christmastime means two things to us: mummies and bladders.

Join us as we meet a young William Clark, an accidental and enterprising watch salesman …

Ep. 16 Up In The Air!

December 7th, 2017


Have you ever heard about the time Amelia Earhart and Eleanor Roosevelt ducked out of a dinner to take a flight over Washington DC?

Or about how …

Bonus Episode: Curious Names

November 24th, 2017


There are a lot of really great names in the past - like, just really cool sounding names. So we're picking a few of our favorites and telling a …

Ep. 15 Cartoons!

November 7th, 2017


Everyone loves cartoons! So we’re taking an unusual look at two big moments in cartoon history – when a vaudeville performer and comic-strip writer …

Bonus Episode: Ghost Ships! A Kids Listen Halloween Sweep

October 23rd, 2017


Have you heard of the Mary Celeste? If you've heard of a ghost ship, this is probably the one.  In 1872 it was found under sail in the Atlantic Ocean …

Ep. 14 Nature Pokers & Women of Science

October 6th, 2017


Women of Science! Join us for some 19th Century STEM stories. Heather Funk tells you about Mary Anning and the origins of "She Sells Sea Shells." …

Ep. 13 The Cheesiest

September 5th, 2017


Your favorite history show for the whole family is back and we're bringing the cheese! First, Graham Shelby reads "Andrew Jackson's Big Cheese," …

Ep. 12: Shaking Hands with Presidents

August 8th, 2017


When Washington first became president, no one knew what to call him, and he certainly didn't want to shake EVERYONE'S hand. There were some growing …

Ep. 11 Hittin' the Road: Niagara

July 6th, 2017


It's time for the July Kids Listen Sweep! This episode features the story of Annie Edson Taylor, who was the first person to successfully survive …

Ep. 10 Underwear: Washington and Charles Lee, Lincoln's Drawers and more

June 12th, 2017


George Washington's frenemy Charles Lee, who you might remember from Hamilton, gets caught in his skivvies, the guy who built the Brooklyn Bridge …

Ep. 9 On The Move: Nelly Bly, Henry Box Brown, All Around this World

May 9th, 2017


Nelly Bly decides to travel around the world in less than 80 days, much like Phileas Fogg, the fictional character from Jules Verne's "Around the …

Kids Listen Sweep Episode - Family Trees

April 13th, 2017


Family Trees sure seem daunting, don't they? Once you get past your grandparents or great-grandparents it can quickly get confusing. Rae Anne Sauer …

Ep. 8: Magic? Mesmer, Fox Sisters, Robert-Houdin, I'll See you In My Dreams

April 10th, 2017


Join host Mick Sullivan for some true tales of magic, or at least what appeared to be magic. Learn Franz Mesmer's gift to your vocabulary, hear …

Ep. 7: Food Tales - Potatoes, Tomatoes, Ice Cream Cornucopias and Chicken Pie

March 9th, 2017


This episode is fast paced and broken into small bites! We’ve squeezed in THREE great stories along with a song and quiz time! Really packed it in there - like sausage in a casing!

Victoria Reibel wonders, did George …

Ep. 6 Heights: Ferris Wheel, Charles Blondin, East of the Sun and more!

February 8th, 2017


Episode 6 is all about Heights!
Victoria Reibel reads a story about the time The Chicago World's Fair had to build something to top the Eiffel Tower.
Jason Lawrence tells the tale of the the world's leading antebellum …

Ep. 5 Birds: Moon Migration, Cher Ami, Cluck Old Hen and more!

January 4th, 2017


In honor of National Bird Day, this episode features some great bird stories from history.

Victoria Reibel reads the story of Charles Morton, a man who tried to explain the mystery of bird migration with an otherworldly …

The Past And The Curious Holiday Short 2016

December 1st, 2016


In this quick Holiday Short, we explore a few of the stories people offer as explanations for the unusual Christmas Pickle Tradition.
We also found …

Ep. 4: Mail Tales: Pony Express, Air Powered Subway, and more

November 12th, 2016


The Pony Express lives in legend, but didn't last long. Find out what it took to be join the team. (read by Victoria Reibel)

Alfred Ely Beach kept a secret from New York City and built a Pneumatic Subway underneath it …

Ep. 3 Anne Bonny, The Western Engineer, "Big Ol' Boat" and more

October 16th, 2016


The origin of Port and Starboard
Victoria Reibel reads stories about Anne Bonny, and Stephen Long's unusual dragon-like steamboat, the Western Engineer.
Tamerlane Trio performs original song "Big Ol' Boat" (song recorded …

Ep. 2: Barnum, Banvard, Paper Moon and more

October 15th, 2016


Victoria Reibel tells the story of P.T. Barnum and an Egress.
Also featured is the tale of John Banvard and his Mississippi Panorama, which was the longest painting in the world.
The Tamerlane Trio performs their version …

Ep. 1 The Past and The Curious: An Introduction

October 7th, 2016


Teachers, parents, adults who love good stories: check us out.
This is just so you know what we're about, who we are and what we're planning to bring …

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