Pure History

Watch Pure History

  • 2011
  • 1 Season

This docuseries presents stand-alone documentary films, each of which touches on a different historical topic. Subjects covered ranged from relatively recent military history to ancient history and the origins of human civilization.

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a King in Waiting
190. a King in Waiting
April 6, 2014
To be Prince of Wales has always been a difficult job. History is littered with royal heirs to the throne who have caused turmoil within the Royal Family, and despite his best intentions, history would prove this Prince to be no different.
Archeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls
189. Archeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls
November 9, 1998
Many secrets of antiquity would be lost forever if it weren't for the special skills of archeologists. See how these patient men and women found and preserved one of the greatest finds in history.
Inside Hamas
187. Inside Hamas
March 9, 2011
Developed over two years and with unprecedented access to the heart of the 'terrorist' organization, this documentary uncovers the reality of daily life in Gaza under Hamas.
the Kings Man   Legacy
185. the Kings Man Legacy
January 1, 2012
Shakespeare's late plays are often viewed as mellow swansongs. But during the last years of his life, Shakespeare was still experimenting and writing about subjects close to home.
Hidden Killers of the Edwardian Home
181. Hidden Killers of the Edwardian Home
December 17, 2013
The dawn of the 20th century ushered in an era of fresh inventions and innovations: Electricity, refrigeration and many other materials promised to make life easier and more convenient. But lack of understanding meant that they frequently led to death.
Hidden Killers of the Victorian Home
180. Hidden Killers of the Victorian Home
December 10, 2013
From the food they ate to the clothes they wore, the Victorians were surrounding themselves with killers. What made taking a bath and drinking milk potentially so dangerous? And how did the Victorian woman turn herself into a walking fire hazard?
Swimming in Auschwitz
179. Swimming in Auschwitz
January 30, 2007
Six Jewish women, from different countries and different backgrounds, found themselves deported to the notorious concentration camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, during the Holocaust. This film attempts to chronicle that experience through those same female eyes.
177. Infiltrators
May 9, 2013
For Palestinians, trying to travel from the West Bank to Jerusalem is a journey made almost impossible by checkpoints and restricted permits. See what lengths people will go to in order to see family.
Dead in the Water
176. Dead in the Water
February 26, 2015
During the Six-Day War, Israel attacked and nearly sank the USS Liberty belonging to its closest ally, the USA. Israel claimed that the whole affair had been a tragic accident based on mistaken identification of the ship, but was it?
The Extraordinary Tale of William Buckley
175. The Extraordinary Tale of William Buckley
February 18, 2015
This incredible docudrama tells the remarkable true story of an escaped convict who spent 32 years living with an Aboriginal tribe in Australia before white colonization. Thought to be a spirit, he was forced to learn the native culture, or perish.
Birth of the Smart Bomber
174. Birth of the Smart Bomber
March 26, 2015
One of the least known stories from WWII is finally told. After countless missed bombings, British scientists developed a navigation system so accurate that planes could drop their bombs within feet of their intended target.
Defusing Human Bombs
174. Defusing Human Bombs
April 24, 2011
Defusing Human Bombs is the incredible story of the Sabaoon School in Pakistan, which uses both psychology and religion to undo years of Taliban indoctrination in the hearts and minds of young boys training to become suicide bombers.
Lost Treasures of the Temple
172. Lost Treasures of the Temple
May 23, 2012
The Temple Mount was considered one of the world's most beautiful structures and its destruction set the stage for 2000 tumultuous years of Jewish history. Today the Temple Mount remains at the center of conflict & a new discovery could open a new debate.
Dance of the Severed Head
169. Dance of the Severed Head
February 8, 2015
The spectacular 250 year old Gajon Folk Festival in Kurmun, India, culminates in a controversial dance with a decayed human head. Karma Wangchuk, a filmmaker from Bhutan, has been granted access to find out more about this mysterious ritual.
Jesus The Cold Case
167. Jesus The Cold Case
February 5, 2015
2000 years ago, Jesus of Nazareth was crucified in Jerusalem. The question is, why? According to the gospels, it was because his fellow Jews found him guilty of blasphemy; they had him executed by the Roman, Pontius Pilot. How true is this story?
Leonardo The Man Behind the Shroud
166. Leonardo The Man Behind the Shroud
December 25, 2001
The Shroud of Turin: sacred Christian relic or clever fake? It must have been by someone with extraordinary technical and artistic skills. The evidence points to one of the greatest geniuses ever. Was Leonardo da Vinci the man behind the shroud of Turin?
Rwandas Lost Tribe
165. Rwandas Lost Tribe
August 1, 2003
Akagera National Park in Rwanda used to be a place of spectacular landscapes and wildlife and a refuge to the proud Bahima tribe. Now the wild herds have been slaughtered, the predators hunted out and the Bahima have gone.
Naked Terracotta Warriors
164. Naked Terracotta Warriors
February 1, 2013
An in-depth look at the lost burial site of Emperor Jing Di's hidden army. Lost for over 2,000 years, this immense site covers 81 burial pits, each containing various goods for the afterlife, and as many as 100,000 terracotta figures.
The Devil We Know
163. The Devil We Know
June 6, 2011
Satan, the enemy of God and humanity is as old as religion itself. But the Devil We Know isn't even a thousand years old. Who is the Devil? Where does he come from? Where does his image come from?
Samurai Sword the Making of a Legend
162. Samurai Sword the Making of a Legend
February 4, 2005
This story of the Katana sword provides a unique insight into the Samurai masters and the swords they use. Probably the most recognized of all martial arts weapons, the Katana wows audiences of an extremely wide genre.
The Norse: An Arctic Mystery
161. The Norse: An Arctic Mystery
January 4, 2015
The History books say that the first European to contact the Native Americans was Christopher Columbus. New evidence tells a different story, showing that centuries earlier, a civilization had already beaten him there. These people were the Norse.
The Pharaoh's Holy Treasure
160. The Pharaoh's Holy Treasure
September 13, 2007
In 1952, a young archaeologist discovered two mysterious green objects buried in a cave by the Dead Sea. 53 years on, and British metallurgist Robert Feather is deciphering messages from ancient scrolls and solving cryptic messages with startling results.
In Search of Beethoven
159. In Search of Beethoven
December 17, 2014
If we had to choose ten great things about humanity, there would probably be several Beethoven works amongst them. This is the story of one of the gods of western music, Ludwig Van Beethoven.
Cutty Sark: Out of the Ashes
157. Cutty Sark: Out of the Ashes
February 6, 2010
On the 140th anniversary of the Cutty Sark's maiden voyage, and for the first time on television, Ben Fogle presents the full story of this world-famous ship and the dramatic bid to save her.
Nero's Golden House
156. Nero's Golden House
May 29, 2014
It was once the grandest building on earth. Built by the most infamous emperor in history, it was a building that played host to violence, sexual perversion and great beauty. Welcome to Nero's Golden House.
We Went to War
152. We Went to War
March 29, 2013
In 1970, Michael Grigsby made the award winning I WAS A SOLDIER, which focused on David, Dennis and Lamar, recently returned veterans from Vietnam. WE WENT TO WAR picks up their gripping emotional story over 40 years later.
Great Bank Robberies
151. Great Bank Robberies
April 2, 2000
Using dramatic reconstructions and exclusive interviews from both sides of the law, this film examines the planning and execution of three of the most incredible and ingenious robberies of the century.
The Surprising History of Sex & Love
150. The Surprising History of Sex & Love
November 10, 2002
Terry Jones of Monty Python takes us on a journey examining sex and love throughout history. Trace the unexpected route of how sex got from strict social repression to the full-frontal pornography of today.
Words of Everest
150. Words of Everest
October 23, 2014
History comes to life as actors read the journals of the British expedition of climb the summit of Mt. Everest. Mixed with actual footage of the expedition as well as recreations, this documentary takes viewers on an agonizing journey to the top of world.
Hidden Heroes of the Holocaust: Remembering the Rescuers
149. Hidden Heroes of the Holocaust: Remembering the Rescuers
October 1, 1999
The Nazis nearly succeeded because of ordinary people who just went about their business. Yet in the darkness shone a light. This documentary features relives both the Jews' terrifying experiences and the daring accounts of those who saved them.
Blood On the Altar
148. Blood On the Altar
October 16, 2014
The Greeks and Romans describe the Phoenicians as a morally corrupt race who forcibly prostituted their daughters and killed their own young to win favor with their violent gods. Were they truly evil or victims of a vicious propaganda campaign?
Antisocial Old Buggers
145. Antisocial Old Buggers
June 20, 2005
There's a new scourge causing mayhem in Great Britain and it's not who you might expect! These seniors have received Antisocial Behavior Orders, been barred from local businesses, face eviction, have extensive criminal records, and more.
The Spy Who Went Into the Cold: Kim Philby, Soviet Super Spy
144. The Spy Who Went Into the Cold: Kim Philby, Soviet Super Spy
November 18, 2013
At the height of the Cold War, a well-educated Englishman called Kim Philby defected to Moscow - for the best part of thirty years he had been spying for the Soviet Union. Fifty years on, more questions than answers surround his legacy.
The Sex Bomb of World War II
143. The Sex Bomb of World War II
June 28, 2004
The story of Sefton Delmer and the use of pornography as a weapon of propaganda during the Second World War.
Cambodia: the Shadows of Angkor
140. Cambodia: the Shadows of Angkor
September 29, 2014
Unlike most, Cambodia's monarchy is not hereditary, the next monarch is chosen by the National Assembly from a pool of eligible candidates. When Sihamoni, a ballet dancer, was chosen, what sort of monarch were they hoping to crown?
Extreme Treasures: Vermeer
137. Extreme Treasures: Vermeer
July 14, 2004
"A Young Woman Seated at the Virginals." After years of study, analysis and restoration, this painting was the first work of Johannes Vermeer to be auctioned in over 80 years.
South Pacific: Islands of War
136. South Pacific: Islands of War
April 17, 2013
Every year, thousands of people flock to the crystal clear waters and white sands of the South Pacific islands, but few realize that these idyllic atolls conceal some of the bloodiest secrets of World War II.
Afghanistan Unveiled
135. Afghanistan Unveiled
July 15, 2014
When Western forces brought down the Taliban in 2001, they claimed that part of their mission was to "˜help liberate the women of Afghanistan' who had been refused basic human rights under that regime. Is this actually the case though?
Young Elizabeth: From Princess to Queen Part 2
134. Young Elizabeth: From Princess to Queen Part 2
June 12, 2014
Elizabeth II was the first child of The Duke and Duchess of York. Despite being third in line to the throne after Edward, Prince of Wales, and her father, it was never expected that the young princess would be Queen.
Edward VIII: From King to Duke
129. Edward VIII: From King to Duke
June 10, 2014
Edward was the eldest son of King George V and Queen Mary. He was created Prince of Wales on his 16th birthday. As a young man, he served in the British Armed Forces during the First World War and undertook several overseas tours on behalf of his father.
Japan: Banzai Tenno, Long Live the Emperor
128. Japan: Banzai Tenno, Long Live the Emperor
September 18, 2014
A look into Japan's Chrysanthemum Throne and the controversy surrounding the vagaries of the royal hereditary system and how the stripping of its 'divine' nature since WWII has affected the monarchy and its relationship with its people.
Wallis Simpson: The Secret Letters
127. Wallis Simpson: The Secret Letters
August 24, 2011
Wallis Simpson was at the center of a national scandal when she was seen to ensnare Edward VIII and lure him from the throne. Recently discovered letters reveal her secret love and her fear as she found herself becoming trapped into marrying Edward VIII
Nat Turner: A Troublesome Property
126. Nat Turner: A Troublesome Property
February 16, 2003
Nat Turner's slave rebellion is a watershed even in America's history of racial conflict. A groundbreaking exploration of this event, this documentary tells the story of that violent confrontation and the ways it's been continuously re-told since 1831.
Sea of Death
125. Sea of Death
March 30, 2014
20,000 German civilians lost their lives when Soviet submarines torpedoed three refugee ships in the Baltic sea at the end of the WWII. We go beneath the waves to view the wrecks of the Wilhelm Gustloff, Steuben and Goya and hear the survivors' stories.
Hitler of the Andes
123. Hitler of the Andes
January 28, 2003
The end of Adolf Hitler's life has been shrouded in mystery. Did he truly die at his bunker in Berlin? Delve into declassified FBI documents and testimonials that reveal the American authorities' theories that Hitler may have survived World War II.
Waking the Titanic
121. Waking the Titanic
March 11, 2014
A new and intimate perspective of the Titanic tragedy: focusing not on the glory and fate of the doomed ship, but the ordinary lives and fragile hopes of the community that lost more of its population that fateful April night than any other.
The Hidden History of Rome
120. The Hidden History of Rome
March 10, 2014
f you thought you knew the ancient world, think again. This program presented by Terry Jones, is packed full of surprising and little-known facts that throw new light on our understanding of the ancient Romans.
D-Day: the Shortest Day
118. D-Day: the Shortest Day
March 6, 2014
Life, said the survivors, was never quite the same again. The Shortest Day documents the meticulous planning leading up to the world's biggest amphibious invasion, the terror and triumph of the landings.
Digging for Jesus
117. Digging for Jesus
March 3, 2014
A generation ago there was a fierce scholarly argument about whether Jesus ever lived. 'Digging For Jesus' explores ten top archaeological digs that take us closer to revealing more about the man from Galilee.
Ancient Inventions of Sex
115. Ancient Inventions of Sex
March 2, 2014
Sex and Love is the focus of the final program. Somebody had to invent the kiss... and the mechanical clock was not invented to tell the time as such, but to keep track of a Chinese emperor's sex life!
Ancient Inventions of War
114. Ancient Inventions of War
February 27, 2014
Examines the search for the ultimate weapon, as well as the ability of doctors to repair the damage such weapons cause. Byzantine flame throwers, Chinese poison gas and successful surgical techniques as complex as brain surgery...
The Bigamist Bride: My Five Husbands
111. The Bigamist Bride: My Five Husbands
October 22, 2009
Emily Horne has been married five times, but never bothered to get divorced. But behind the lurid headlines lies a darker tale of mental illness, addiction, and neglect.
I Killed John Lennon
110. I Killed John Lennon
December 8, 2005
Meet Mark Chapman: the man who murdered John Lennon. In a series of newly released taped interviews, Chapman reveals the inner workings of his mind, and what drove him to murder one of the most beloved musicians of his generation.
The Pirates of Somalia
109. The Pirates of Somalia
February 20, 2014
With unique, perilous access on board a hijacked ship, 'Pirates Of Somalia' is the true story behind the rise of piracy in Somalia and follows a group of youths on a pirate skiff as they hunt for ships to hijack.
The 9/11 Faker
108. The 9/11 Faker
September 11, 2008
Tania Head - a survivor from the 9/11 attacks - made it her job to help other survivors toward emotional recovery. That is, until the facts of her story fell through, and she uncovered as a fraud. Find out the facts behind this story of betrayal.
Mountains and Man: In the Shadow of Giants
107. Mountains and Man: In the Shadow of Giants
February 9, 2014
The great sculptures of the natural world, mountains occupy a quarter of the land on the Earth's surface. Since the dawn of civilization, man has made his home in the shadow of these giants - his life dictated by the mighty summits and valleys.
Captain Morgan's Mystery Ships
106. Captain Morgan's Mystery Ships
February 6, 2014
Morgan virtually ran a private pirate fleet in the Caribbean up until his death in 1688. We bring to life the most colorful period of Western history thanks to a discovery that could be the maritime equivalent of the Valley of the Kings.
D-Day Invasion Maps
105. D-Day Invasion Maps
February 2, 2014
A map can be the most powerful weapon a nation can use against its enemies. See how the maps of WWII played a crucial role in the war, and the incredible measures that were taken to obtain crucial information.
The Mercator Atlas
104. The Mercator Atlas
January 30, 2014
A map can be a treasure worth even more than gold, revealing powerful information that could destroy a nation. Skilled mapmakers were prized by Europe's Kings and Queens, but what happens when those maps are sold to the highest bidder?
War Horse: The Real Story
102. War Horse: The Real Story
March 4, 2012
For centuries, Britain's cavalry had been one of the staples of its military force. But with the dawn of World War I, a bloody end was beginning for the war horse. Go inside the real history of the WWI British Cavalry's heroic last charge.
Lockerbie: Death of a Terrorist
101. Lockerbie: Death of a Terrorist
January 19, 2014
More than 21 years after the UK's worst terrorist atrocity, the man convicted of murdering 270 people has died. But his death will do little to assuage the controversy surrounding his final years and the pain afflicted by the Lockerbie bombing.
Tobin: Portrait of a Serial Killer
100. Tobin: Portrait of a Serial Killer
October 15, 2010
As Peter Tobin awaits his third murder conviction, Real Crime attempts to discover whether this vicious killer is in fact Britain's worst serial killer by interviewing criminologists, psychologists, and survivors of Tobin's monstrous actions.
Nazi Hate Rock
99. Nazi Hate Rock
December 5, 2009
Nazi Hate Rock is a shocking, first-time investigation into the disturbing rise of the racist and anti-semitic music industry across North America and Europe, and reveals how young people are being drawn to the gospel of "˜White Power'.
The Search for Sherlock Holmes
98. The Search for Sherlock Holmes
April 17, 2009
He one of the most loved characters of all time, and the main novel of his adventures is said to be the third most read publication in the world behind the Bible and Dictionary. Investigate the phenomenon of Sherlock Holmes in this revealing documentary.
Bedlam: The History of Bethlem Hospital
97. Bedlam: The History of Bethlem Hospital
March 18, 2010
Following years of secrecy, the Bethlem Royal Hospital in London became infamous in the 1600's for its inhumane and cruel treatments of its "mad" patients. Explore the gruesome history of the world's most well known mental institution.
The Flying Scotsman: A Rail Romance
96. The Flying Scotsman: A Rail Romance
March 4, 2013
Built in 1923, the Flying Scotsman was the first steam locomotive to run at 100 miles an hour and to star in its own feature film. This is the untold story of the iconic Flying Scotsman - the very best in the engineering of its time.
Mao's China vs. India
94. Mao's China vs. India
December 18, 2013
For over fifty years, the Chinese army guarded a top-secret film record of the Cold War. Now, this film showcases front line footage, combined with first-person accounts, revealing the secret conflicts the Red Army fought and won from behind the Iron Curt
Amazonian Justice Boat
91. Amazonian Justice Boat
March 1, 2012
When people talk about the Amazon, it is usually in regards to deforestation. But there are also people living on the river. Though they can travel locally, the city authorities are too far a distance to traverse. This is where the Justice Boat can help.
The Last Mermaids
90. The Last Mermaids
October 1, 2009
For over 2,000 years, the women of Jeju Island off South Korea have survived by becoming Haenyos - women sea divers. The Last Mermaids follows these women as they dive deep into the ocean with only their leaded belts and a sharp knife, in order to survive.
The Secret D-Day Disaster Revealed
89. The Secret D-Day Disaster Revealed
March 20, 2012
How did a rehearsal for D-Day on a sleep British coast result in the death of hundreds of Allied soldiers? Survivor and eye-witness accounts, top-secret documents, and new evidence help reveal the secrecy around "Exercise Tiger" that persists to this day.
Battle of the Somme: The True Story
88. Battle of the Somme: The True Story
July 4, 2006
The Battle of the Somme was the bloodiest day in the history of England. Since then, debate has raged over the legitimacy of the only combat footage of the battle. Now, a team of investigators is using science to solve this 90-year-old mystery.
Toumai, The Oldest Human Ancestor
87. Toumai, The Oldest Human Ancestor
June 11, 2006
The oldest human ancestor recorded to date, better known as Toumai, is seven million years old and has just "crash-landed" in the world of the living. The entire history of humankind is thrown into question.
Australian Tribal Art
86. Australian Tribal Art
November 17, 2013
Griff Rhys Jones travels o the remote Torres Strait Islands between Australia and Papua New Guinea to explore what remains of an unusually creative and warlike culture. What made their art so striking and powerful?
African Tribal Art
84. African Tribal Art
November 14, 2013
Griff Rhys Jones continues his quest to find traditional art in remote places by travelling to West Africa. Antique carvings can fetch millions of pounds, but what makes a piece 'authentic', and are they still being made? Is there such a thing as pure Afr
The Bombing of Darwin
83. The Bombing of Darwin
February 19, 2012
The bombing of Darwin by the Japanese during WWII was the only time Australia has ever faced war on its own soil. But in the midst of chaos, a government cover-up hid the devastation from the public eye. Discover the truth behind the Bombing of Darwin.
Brat Academy
82. Brat Academy
November 2, 2008
While China's one-child policy has stemmed its population boom, it also had unexpected side effects. With so many "only children," behavioral problems are the new norm. Brat Academies are many parents' last chance at turning their wayward children around.
The Oldest Mummies in the World
80. The Oldest Mummies in the World
October 15, 2013
Nine thousand year-old mummies have been found, not in Egypt as we would expect, but in Northern Chile. This documentary reveals the Egyptians were not the first to practice mummification.
Pearl Islands: The Story of Bahrain's Natural Gems
79. Pearl Islands: The Story of Bahrain's Natural Gems
December 31, 2008
Since 4000 BC the pearl has been revered as a treasure. As man's quest for the gem escalated, the islands of Bahrain became known as the source of the world's best pearls. Discover the history of Bahrain's pearl divers, and how their traditions live on.
Hoax or History: The Michigan Relics
78. Hoax or History: The Michigan Relics
March 3, 2013
During the late 1800s, a multitude of strange artifacts were unearthed in Michigan. Written in ancient scripts from around the world, they told of a civilization predating Columbus. Are these relics a lost piece of history, or part of an elaborate hoax?
JFK's Women: The Scandals Revealed
77. JFK's Women: The Scandals Revealed
December 12, 2006
John F. Kennedy was the most charismatic president of the 20th century, but he was also a reckless sexual adventurer. At least five of his conquests posed a potential threat to national security. Discover the true story behind Kennedy's women.
Burj Khalifa: Dubai's Vertical City
75. Burj Khalifa: Dubai's Vertical City
October 6, 2011
Immerse yourself in the world of the rich and famous and follow the owner and workers who call this super tower home. With unprecedented access, get a glimpse of what it is like to live, work, and play in the World's Tallest Tower.
Diana vs. The Queen
74. Diana vs. The Queen
October 3, 2013
This revealing documentary charts the two women's relationship from its very beginnings, through the royal wedding to Diana's emergence as a global superstar. The story ends in the final showdown of Diana's funeral.
The Boarding School Bomber
73. The Boarding School Bomber
November 21, 2011
Three years after the 7/7 attacks on London, Bristol became the intended target of another terrorist attack. However, the young man planning it was no typical terrorist. Uncover what drove Andrew Ibrahim to become a would-be terrorist.
Samurai Bow
72. Samurai Bow
September 30, 2013
The Japanese bow, or Yumi, has remained virtually unchanged for almost 500 years and is considered a work of art. Steeped in tradition and treated with the utmost respect, it was the Samurai's deadly killing machine.
The Legends of Santa
71. The Legends of Santa
September 26, 2013
Santa's image is almost universally recognizable, yet the jolly old soul, with his bag of gifts, steering his reindeer and sliding down chimneys is a relatively modern image. This festive documentary shows how today's Santa is a fusion of cultures and tra
I.M. Pei: Learning from the Light
70. I.M. Pei: Learning from the Light
September 25, 2013
Well into his 90s, Master Architect I.M. Pei is still striving to perfect his craft. He embarks on a journey of discovery to build the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Qatar. See techniques never attempted until now.
Royal Wreck of Gold
69. Royal Wreck of Gold
August 26, 2013
When the steam clipper "The Royal Charter" was wrecked off the British coast, it took an unbelievable 460 passengers and 80 million Australian dollars with it. Now, for the first time, unearth the secrets of The Royal Charter.
Tracing Che
68. Tracing Che
August 18, 2013
Ernesto 'Che' Guevara de la Serna represents one of the most enduring images of a political leader. His legendary character has been the inspiration for millions of people over the last fifty years. Follow in his footsteps.
Space Hero: China's First Man in Space
67. Space Hero: China's First Man in Space
August 14, 2013
China's ambitious manned space program was launched in 1992. Only two nations, the Soviet Union and the United States, had successfully launched a man into space. China was determined to be the third.
Pocahontas & Captain John Smith: Love and Survival in the New World
66. Pocahontas & Captain John Smith: Love and Survival in the New World
November 7, 2008
This romantic tale is an American legend. But was it really a love story or the figment of a vivid imagination?
Jade Hunters of China
65. Jade Hunters of China
July 30, 2013
High in the mountains of China men gamble with their money, and their lives. The prize is some of the finest jade on earth, but winning it requires many sacrifices. Life is not easy for these men, who dedicate their life to excavating this rare stone.
Speeches That Changed the World
64. Speeches That Changed the World
October 21, 2010
This collection of classic speeches contains inspiring hymns to freedom and the noblest aspects of human endeavor. But there is another side to oratory, and we are also shown some of the darkest and most despicable speeches delivered in modern times.
Vampire Skeletons
63. Vampire Skeletons
September 13, 2011
A new archaeological find reveals a disturbing truth behind the legend of the vampire. Go back hundreds to thousands of years before the creation of our first vampire, Dracula, and look into the darkest depths of humanity's earliest fears of the undead.
Arctic Manhunt
62. Arctic Manhunt
May 21, 2009
In 1931, a stranger appeared out of nowhere in the Canadian Arctic. Months later, the North's biggest manhunt was launched to find the elusive murderer and thief. The fugitive's unknown identity died with him, never to be discovered - until now.
The Pilgrims: Journey Into the Unknown
61. The Pilgrims: Journey Into the Unknown
July 4, 2013
For many Americans, the journey of the Mayflower symbolizes the birth of their nation. But what more is there to the story? How did the pilgrims' persecuted religious community survive against all odds on their journey into the unknown?
Search for the Lost Treasure of Afghanistan
60. Search for the Lost Treasure of Afghanistan
July 2, 2013
It is the greatest "˜lost treasure' in history: a mountain of gold and jewels reputed to be worth over $530 billion. Now, Tahir Shah is taking up the gauntlet to find the treasure of his ancestor - Ahmad Shah, the first king of Afghanistan.
The Year Without Summer
58. The Year Without Summer
June 27, 2013
Almost two hundred years ago, Mount Tambora in Eastern Indonesia unleashed the most deadly eruption in history, wiping out at least 117,000 people. However, the death toll continued to rise as it triggered worldwide climate change.
Treasure and Death: Secrets of a Moche Tomb
57. Treasure and Death: Secrets of a Moche Tomb
June 26, 2013
Tombs belonging to one of America's most intriguing ancient civilizations, the Moche, not only reveal human remains from more than two thousand years ago, they also hold numerous clues to many unsolved mysteries.
Titanic: The Band Played On
56. Titanic: The Band Played On
June 23, 2013
As the mighty Titanic sunk into the sea, the ship's musicians continued to create beautiful music. Who were these men, and why did they continue to play when death was imminent?
Royals at War
54. Royals at War
June 16, 2013
Royals At War takes an in-depth look at the involvement of members of the Royal family between 1939-1945, a sometimes forgotten part of the story of World War II.
Robberies of the Century
53. Robberies of the Century
June 5, 2013
They used disguises, cunning and bravado. Some traveled through foreign lands, leading top detectives on a wild pursuit around the world. Some got away with millions, others captured within days.
Titanic Revealed
52. Titanic Revealed
February 15, 2005
For decades the wreck of the Titanic remained hidden, until Dr. Robert Ballard did the impossible. Uncover the true story of how the Titanic was discovered, and follow Ballard as he returns to the wreck site for the first time in twenty years.
Mumbai Megaflood
51. Mumbai Megaflood
May 28, 2007
How was the world's sixth largest city brought to a grinding halt by the forces of nature? Relive the massive flood that toppled Mumbai, India, and forced all its systems shut down as millions of people came under siege by freak weather.
Silkair 185: Pilot Suicide?
50. Silkair 185: Pilot Suicide?
April 26, 2006
The crash of Silkair 185 was a mystery to the aviation community: one minute the plane is fine, the next, it's diving with no hope of stabilization. What was behind this tragedy? Was it a mechanical failure, or the agenda of a suicidal pilot?
Mega Mosque
49. Mega Mosque
May 17, 2013
Constructed over twelve years, Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi is the largest mosque in the United Arab Emirates. Not only in sheer size, but also in elegant beauty, this is a mega structure that's as artistic as it is massive.
Head On Air Crash
48. Head On Air Crash
May 15, 2013
On November 12, 1996 two planes collided head on at 14,000 feet. There were no survivors. Using newspaper reports, official documents, and eyewitness accounts, Head On Air Crash pieces together the events of that fateful day.
Hidden Genders
47. Hidden Genders
March 18, 2004
The world is often thought to be made up of just males and females -or is it? Explore how different cultures and religion perceive individuals who are "neither male nor female", and how those individuals have assimilated to their places in society.
The Tsunami Line
46. The Tsunami Line
May 13, 2013
The tsunami that devastated Sri Lanka's coast caused the worst train disaster in world history. But rather than splinter along with their rail system, the Sri Lankans united to rebuild the Southern Railway line. Follow the ongoing recovery effort.
Asia's Titanic
45. Asia's Titanic
November 3, 2009
In 1987, the passenger ship Dona Paz collided with an oil tanker off Mindoro Island in the Philippines. It was the world's worst peacetime maritime disaster since the Titanic. Yet the truth regarding the crash has been hidden, until now.
China's Ghost Army
44. China's Ghost Army
May 5, 2013
Since being unearthed in 1974, experts have attempted to resolve an enigma about one of archaeology's greatest finds. Now, with the help of 21st century technology, the once mighty army with its life size warriors rises from the dust of two millennia.
Mendelssohn, The Nazis and Me
43. Mendelssohn, The Nazis and Me
April 10, 2013
This film by Felix Mendelssohn's descendant tells the extraordinary story of what happened, generations after Mendelssohn's life, to his family and music when the Nazis remembered the Jewish roots of Germany's most celebrated composer.
Love Around the World
41. Love Around the World
April 8, 2013
The search for love may involve ancient traditions, or cutting edge correspondence. Meet romantic hopefuls from Alaska and Australia, remote Papua New Guinea and the heart of London, as they hunt for their soul mates in the modern world.
The Real History of England
40. The Real History of England
September 20, 2004
The Anglo-Saxon settlement of England marked a new age for Britain. But with new archeological evidence, the very identity of the Anglo-Saxons has come into question. Were they really invaders, or were they a part of British culture all along?
Pilate: The Man Who Killed Christ
39. Pilate: The Man Who Killed Christ
March 19, 2005
Throughout history, Pontius Pilate has been portrayed as a weak ruler-the man who allowed Jesus Christ to be crucified at the demand of the Jews. But this documentary portrays a very different Pilate, one who had his own motives for allowing Jesus' fate.
Fire and Ice
38. Fire and Ice
January 31, 2006
This award-winning documentary tells the story of the Soviet Union's invasion of Finland. Vastly outnumbered and outgunned, Finland's defenders clung to what hope they could find. Their stoic refusal to surrender changed the course of World War II.
Promises and Betrayals
37. Promises and Betrayals
February 2, 2013
This is a story of how deception and conflicting promises ignited a legacy of bloodshed in Middle East. Avi Shlaim, Professor of International Relations at Oxford University, calls it 'one of the best documentaries on the Middle East I have ever seen'.
Mao's Great Famine
36. Mao's Great Famine
February 14, 2012
Based on testimony by survivors, rare footage, and interviews with leading historians, this film strips away the secrecy surrounding the tragic Chinese famine that killed millions, and exposes the lie which continues even today as to the true human cost.
Hitler's Women
35. Hitler's Women
January 23, 2013
Women were among the strongest pillars of Hitlerism. While some historians underline the complicity between women and the government, others present them as victims of the Nazis. This film sheds light on the complex relations between Hitler and women.
Secret Russian Sub: Mission Invisible
34. Secret Russian Sub: Mission Invisible
January 20, 2013
Since the Cold War, only glimpses of the largest killing machine on Earth have ever been seen. Until now. In a striking insider film, go onboard the pride of the Russian Northern Fleet: a Typhoon-class submarine.
The Sacred Animals of the Pharaohs
33. The Sacred Animals of the Pharaohs
January 21, 2013
The animals of the Pharaohs were worshiped as sacred and immortalized in the stunning Egyptian artwork. Explore this ancient world through the eyes of its animals, including crocodiles, hippos, various birds, and monkeys.
Mystery of the Black Mummy
32. Mystery of the Black Mummy
January 13, 2013
Five thousand four hundred years ago, a two-year-old black boy had been buried under a rock shelter. Before his unearthing, everyone had thought the Egyptians were the inventors of mummification. If not them, who?
Sea Soldiers
31. Sea Soldiers
January 7, 2013
During the Cold War both America and Russia developed a top-secret ultra weapon: an undersea fighting force of sea lions, pilot whales, and dolphins. For thirty years, the two nations tried to transform these marine mammals into professional killers.
Halloween: Feast of the Dying Sun
30. Halloween: Feast of the Dying Sun
December 25, 2012
We delve into the ancient Celtic origins and the dark fun of Halloween with an eerie journey back in time. Experience the ancient beliefs and practices that are often misconstrued in today's world.
Prince Charles' Other Mistress
29. Prince Charles' Other Mistress
December 22, 2012
When Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles were married in 2005, it seemed a happy ending to a well-loved story. But one part was missing. With never before seen interviews, experience the untold story of Dale Tryon, Prince Charles' Other Mistress.
Mammoth Hunters
27. Mammoth Hunters
December 18, 2012
Since the international ban on elephant hunting, Russia has cornered the ivory market. But this ivory comes from mammoth skeletons. Follow an expedition to a remote area of Siberia, and go inside the new business of "the white gold of the tundra".
The Princess and the Gangster
26. The Princess and the Gangster
December 12, 2012
He was one of Britain's most notorious gangsters. She was a princess, at one time second in line to the British throne. Together, they would create one of the biggest scandals in royal history, one that threatened to bring down the very monarchy itself.
The Diana Conspiracy
25. The Diana Conspiracy
December 10, 2012
With access to new documents from the Paris crash investigation and exclusive, never before seen interviews, this film examines the conspiracies surrounding Princess Diana's death, how they came to be, and why people believe in them so fervently.
The Shroud of Christ
24. The Shroud of Christ
December 3, 2012
In 2002, the world's most famous religious relic underwent a secret restoration. Now we'll turn back the clock, embarking on a journey of discovery to unravel one of the world's most perplexing mysteries: Is the Shroud of Turin real, or an elaborate hoax?
Tale of the Australian Jesse James
23. Tale of the Australian Jesse James
July 8, 2009
Join Tony Robinson in a unique, never to be repeated archaeological excavation of the site of the infamous Australian Outlaw Ned Kelly's last stand. Tony will uncover new revelations as he investigates one of Australia's most iconic historical events.
The Queen's Coronation
22. The Queen's Coronation
December 1, 2008
The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II was a glittering triumph for the House of Windsor. But behind the scenes the unholiest of rows; a clash between tradition and modernization that would decide the future of Britain's royal family.
Breaking the Sound Barrier
21. Breaking the Sound Barrier
August 24, 2008
The international race for supersonic flight was won by the Americans in 1947. Designers, engineers and survivors of an elite group of pilots who risked life and limb in testing the prototype tell their story.
The Dambusters of WW2, Part 3: Dangerous Mission
20. The Dambusters of WW2, Part 3: Dangerous Mission
August 6, 2011
It was one of the most influential achievements of World War II, a strike at the heart of the German military. Using only the equipment and the knowledge available of the time, today's British pilots will attempt to recreate the feat. (Pt 3)
The Dambusters of WW2, Part 2: Preparing for the Raid
19. The Dambusters of WW2, Part 2: Preparing for the Raid
August 7, 2011
It was one of the most influential achievements of World War II, a strike at the heart of the German military. Using only the equipment and the knowledge available of the time, today's British pilots will attempt to recreate the feat. (Pt 2)
Decoded: Dan Brown's Lost Symbol
17. Decoded: Dan Brown's Lost Symbol
December 25, 2009
In this roller coaster of a film, Tony Robinson's hopes for hidden truths are constantly raised and dashed as he investigates the Masonic influence on past and present, and delves into the truth of their rituals and secrets.
Mummies of the Taklamakan
16. Mummies of the Taklamakan
October 22, 2004
For ten years, a Franco-Chinese team has been excavating the Taklamakan desert. This quest takes us across the oases of the ancient Silk Road, a commercial caravan route along which Buddhism spread to China in the 1st century A.D.
Vesuvius: Deadly Fury
15. Vesuvius: Deadly Fury
May 14, 2003
On the 24th August 79 AD, the eruption of Vesuvius eradicated the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Using modern science, the mysteries of the devastation are revealed.
Beasts of the Roman Games
14. Beasts of the Roman Games
July 17, 2009
The untold story of the Roman animal trade and the arena games. For over seven hundred years, the Romans trapped, transported and slaughtered wild and exotic animals in the Empire's arenas of death.
The Vanishing Tattoo
13. The Vanishing Tattoo
September 21, 2003
A grueling journey deep into the jungle of Borneo takes two men in search of the last remaining traditional tattoo artists. Pushing inland along the 'River of Death', they document ancient practices and try to keep the traditional methods alive.
Story of the Lost Nuke
12. Story of the Lost Nuke
November 21, 2008
In February 1950, engine failure forces a US bomber to crash land. Its cargo: a MK IV nuclear bomb. Despite the largest search mission in US Air Force history, the nuclear weapon remained lost in the Pacific Ocean... until now.
The Khufu Pyramid Revealed
11. The Khufu Pyramid Revealed
December 27, 2008
The Great Pyramids are the only wonder of the ancient world that still stands today, the greatest of which is the pyramid of Khufu. Many theories have been offered to explain its construction, but none as convincing or unique as this one.
Assault and Rescue: the Entebbe Raid
10. Assault and Rescue: the Entebbe Raid
April 9, 2012
The daring Israeli raid on Entebbe described in first-person accounts by the heroes who pulled off this impossible mission. Gripping re-enactments take you inside the assault that brought nearly all of the highjacked Air France hostages to safety.
Missing in Action: A Daughter's Search for Her MIA Father
9. Missing in Action: A Daughter's Search for Her MIA Father
January 13, 2012
The emotional story of Deborah Robertson Bardsley's search for her father, John Robertson, an airforce pilot shot down in Vietnam. Her story reminds us of the 1678 servicemen still missing, and of the struggle of their families to get a full accounting.
Quest for the Lost Pharaoh
8. Quest for the Lost Pharaoh
November 12, 2012
Unraveling the tale of a priest and his family by following the clues left to us by the ancients, Vassil Dobrev will attempt to reconstruct the past in his quest for the lost pharaoh. State of the art CGI brings the ancient necropolis to life.
Hitler's Warriors: Paulus the Defector
8. Hitler's Warriors: Paulus the Defector
December 31, 2011
Friedrich Paulus rose to the rank of field marshal in the German army in World War II, and is best known for commanding the disastrous Nazi assault on Stalingrad. Then, when he was captured, he ended up defecting to the Soviets.
Vampire Island
7. Vampire Island
August 10, 2010
A crack team of archaeologists and forensic scientists have uncovered hard evidence for the existence of Vampires and the location of mass burial site for the un-dead.
The Kennedy Mystique
7. The Kennedy Mystique
April 21, 2004
In just under a thousand days in office, the Kennedys used photography and television to charm the world and change politics forever. Never-before seen footage from a lost archive reveals how the Kennedys won the hearts of millions.
Hitler's Warriors: Canaris the Spy
7. Hitler's Warriors: Canaris the Spy
December 30, 2011
Wilhelm Franz Canaris was a German admiral and head of the German military intelligence service from 1935 to 1944. He was also a member of the German Resistance. Posing as a trusted man, he worked to overthrow Hitler's regime.
Spellbound: Crimes of the Mind
6. Spellbound: Crimes of the Mind
April 30, 2010
Sometimes just a tap on the shoulder is enough to put you under a stranger's control. The mystery of mind manipulation, or "pukau" has long since been an enigma. Unravel the secrets behind these crimes of the mind.
Sea Spies
6. Sea Spies
December 10, 2003
During the cold war, submarine technology was ever increasing. However, the technology was not aimed at who could carry the most firepower, it was a game of who could be the most silent and undetectable.
Hitler's Warriors: Rommel the Desert Fox
6. Hitler's Warriors: Rommel the Desert Fox
December 29, 2011
Erwin Rommel, the Desert Fox, was known as a skilled commander of desert warfare. However, late in the war, Rommel was linked to the conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler. In return for assurances his family would be spared, Rommel agreed to commit suicide.
Westall '66: A Suburban UFO Mystery
5. Westall '66: A Suburban UFO Mystery
June 4, 2010
In 1966, in the Australian suburb of Westall, hundreds of students, teachers, and local residents saw the unimaginable: a UFO. Silenced by authorities at the time, now they revisit the extraordinary experience as a tenacious sleuth searches for answers.
Cold War Spies Behind Enemy Lines
5. Cold War Spies Behind Enemy Lines
November 7, 2011
The end of the Second World War marked the beginning of the Cold War. The Iron Curtain became impenetrable, so western intelligence agencies sent spies behind enemy lines to find out what they could about the Soviet armed forces.
Charles Manson: The Man Who Killed The 60s
4. Charles Manson: The Man Who Killed The 60s
June 25, 1995
The events of the night of August 9th, 1969 changed the face of the '60s. The brutal murders of starlet Sharon Tate and her friends shocked the world, and when the Manson Family murderers were found, flower-power culture came under the spotlight.
Hitler's Warriors: Manstein the Strategist
4. Hitler's Warriors: Manstein the Strategist
October 11, 2011
Erich von Manstein was one of the most prominent commanders of Germany's World War II armed forces. As one of Hitler's best military strategists, he was responsible for planning and initiating the invasion of France.
Russian Submarine Disaster
3. Russian Submarine Disaster
September 21, 2011
The sinking of the submarine Kursk was one of the worst accidents ever in the history of the Russian navy. Not one of the crew members survived the inferno. In the aftermath, engineers struggled to salvaging the wreck in the rough Barents Sea.
Secret Sub Attack On Pearl Harbor
2. Secret Sub Attack On Pearl Harbor
August 11, 2011
More than 60 years after the attack on Pearl Harbor, scientists make a startling discovery. 366 meters below the surface, they find a Midget, a Japanese navy submarine that was part of the Japanese plan to destroy Pearl Harbor.
Prisoners Of War Betrayed
1. Prisoners Of War Betrayed
July 18, 2011
The fate of prisoners of war and missing in action is one of the darkest chapters of the Cold War. Tens of thousands of American soldiers European survivors were sent to unknown destinations during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.

This docuseries presents stand-alone documentary films, each of which touches on a different historical topic. Subjects covered ranged from relatively recent military history to ancient history and the origins of human civilization. Pure History is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (157 episodes). The series first aired on July 18, 2011.

Where to Watch Pure History

Pure History is available for streaming on the CreateSpace website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Pure History on demand at Amazon Prime.

  • Premiere Date
    July 18, 2011