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10 July

HistoryPodcast 68 – Hinckley Fire of 1894


The Great Hinckley Fire was a major conflagration that burned an area of more than 400 square miles (1000 km²), killing 418 to 459 people in the process. The fire occurred on September 1, 1894 and was centered at Hinckley, Minnesota. After a two-month drought, several fires started in the pine forests of Pine County, Minnesota. The main contributor to the fire was apparently the then-common method of lumber harvesting, which involved stripping trees of their branches, littering the ground with such detritus. Another contributing factor was a temperature inversion that trapped the gases from the fires, the fires developed into a firestorm, with flames reaching over four miles (6 km) high and temperatures reaching 1000 degrees Fahrenheit (550 °C). Some people were able to escape by climbing into wells, or by reaching a nearby pond or the Grindstone River. Others escaped by jumping onto two crowded trains that were able to get out of town. James Root, an engineer on a train heading south from Duluth, was able to rescue nearly 300 people by backing a train up nearly five miles to Skunk Lake, where people could escape the fire.

HP68 – Hinckley Fire.mp3 7:35 – 7.13MB

Source: City of Hinckley, Minnesota

Other Links: – History Topics

Wikipeida Article


Hinckley Online Tour


Under a Flaming Sky : The Great Hinckley Firestorm of 1894
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01 July

HistoryPodcast 67 – John Brown


This a a request from the history hotline. John Brown was a militant American Abolitionist whose raid on the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry, Va., in 1859 made him a martyr to the anti-slavery cause and was instrumental in heightening sectional animosities that led to the American Civil War (1861 – 65).

HP67 – John Brown 4:48 – 4.57MB


PBS Resource Bank John Brown

PBS: American Experience Mini-Site

Wikipedia Article

Lots of information

John Brown and the Kennedy Farmhouse

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22 June

HistoryPodcast 66 – Kennesaw Georgia


Hope you all enjoy this podcast that was recorded while I was in Georgia. Let me know what you think by calling the history hotline or emailing me. Thanks!

HP66 – Kennesaw.mp3 21:40 – 20.1MB


Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History

Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield

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04 June
01 June

HistoryPodcast 64 – Jomo Kenyatta


This one is a request from the history hotline. Jomo Kenyatta born 1894 in Ichaweri, British East Africa. African statesman and nationalist, the first prime minister and then president of independent Kenya.

HP64 – Jomo Kenyatta.mp3 10:55 – 10.1MB

Source: Encyclopedia Britannica


Wikipedia Article

A Biography on Kenyatta

Jomo Kenyatta born 1894 in Ichaweri, British East Africa. African statesman and nationalist, the first prime minister and then president of independent Kenya.

Kenyatta was born as Kamau, son of Ngengi, southwest of Mount Kenya in the East African highlands. His father was leader of a small agricultural settlement; his grandfather was a murogi, or diviner, known for his knowledge of medicine and magic. Like all Kikuyu boys, Kamau learned hunting skills, close observation, memory discipline, social obligations and responsibilities, and family clan history. From his grandfather he learned herbal remedies and gained a respect for spiritual knowledge and powers of the diviner.

At about the age of 10 Kamau became seriously ill with jigger infections in this feet and one leg, and he underwent successful surgery at a newly established Church of Scotland mission. This was his initial contact with Europeans. Fascinated with what he had seen during his recuperation, Kamau ran away from his home to become a resident pupil at the mission. He studied the bible, English, mathematics, and carpentry and paid for his fees by working as a houseboy and cook for a European settler. In august 1914 he was baptized with the name Johnstone Kamau. He was one of the earliest of the Kikyu to run away from the confines of his own culture. And, like many others, Kamau soon left the mission life for the bright lights of Narobi.

He secured a job as a clerk in the Public Works Department and during WWI. There enjoyed relative affluence. He added the name Kenyatta, the Kikuyu term for a fancy belt that he wore. After serving briefly as an interpreter in the High Court, Kenyatta transferred to a post with the Nairobi Town Council. About this time he married and began to raise a family. According to his younger brother, he was “not interested in politics.”

The African political protest movement in Kenya against a white-settler-dominated government began in 1921-the East Africa Association (EAA), led by an educated young Kikuyu named Harry Thuku. Kenyatta joined the following year. One of the EAA’s main purposes was to recover Kikuyu lands lost when Kenya became a crown colony in 1920. The African’s were dispossessed, leaseholds of land were restricted to white settlers, and native reservations were established. In March 1922 Thuku was arrested; he was later deported and overt protest was silenced. Kenyatta however, continued to work privately for the EAA as propaganda secretary. As a government employee, he was supposed to avoid politics, but he managed to remain inconspicuous. In 1925 the EAA disbanded as a result of government pressures, and its members reformed as the Kikuyu Central Association (KCA). Three years later Kenyatta became its general secretary, though he had to give up his municipal job as a consequence.

In May 1928 Kenyatta launched a monthly Kikuyu-language newsletter Mwigithania (“He Who Brings Together”), aimed at gaining support from all sections of the Kikuyu. The paper was mild in tone, preaching self-improvement, and was tolerated by the government. But soon a new challenged appeared. A British commission recommended a closer union of the three East African territories (Kenya, Uganda, and Tanganyika). Settler leaders supported the proposal, expecting that internal self-government might follow. To the KCA such a protest looked disastrous for Kikuyu interest; in February 1929 Kenyatta went to London to testify against the scheme.

In London the Secretary of Stat for Colonies refused to meet Kenyatta, but several groups critical of British colonialism aided him; the League Against Imperialism arranged a brief trip to Moscow for him, from August to October 1929. The following July Kenyatta attended the International Negro Workers’ Conference at Hamburg. His hosts urged the unity of the black proletariat as a worldwide exploited class, but Kenyatta’s interests remained rivetted on the sufferings of his own people. On March 26, 1930, he wrote an eloquent letter in The Times of London setting out five issues championed by the KCA: (1) security of the land tenure and the return of lands allotted to European settlers; (2) increased education facilities; (3) repeal of hut taxes on women, which forced some to earn money by prostitution; (4) African representation in the Legislative Council; and (5) noninterference with traditional customs.

He concluded by saying that the lack of these measures “must inevitably result in a dangerous explosion-the one thing all sane men wish to avoid.”

Again in 1931 Kenyatta’s testimony on the issue of closer union of the three colonies was refused despite the help of liberals in the House of Commons. In the end, however, the government temporaily abandoned its plan for union. Kenyatta did manage to testify on behalf of the Charter Land Commission. The commission decided to offer compensation for some appropriated territories but maintained the “white-highlands” policy, which restricted the Kikuyu overcrowded reserves. Kenyatta again visited the Soviet Union (he spent two years at the University of Moscow) and traveled extensively through Europe; on his return to England he supplied information on Phonetics to researchers at University College, London, and studied anthropology under Bronislaw Malinowski at the London School of Economics. His thesis was revised and published in 1938 as Facing Mount Kenya, a study of the traditional life of Kikuyu characterized by both insight and tinge of romanticism. The study defended a way of life that was already deeply eroded, and it ignored the extensive adaptations the Kikuyu had made to European culture. The book signaled another name change to Jomo (Burning Spear) Kenyatta.

During the 1930s, Kenyatta briefly joined the Communist Party, met other black nationalist and writers, and actively organized protests against the Italian invasion of Ethiopia. The onset of WWII temporarily cut him off from the KCA, which was banned by the Kenya authorities as potentially subversive. Kenyatta maintained himself in England by lecturing for the Workers Educational Association and working as a farm laborer. But he continued to produce political pamphlets publicizing the Kikuyu cause.

Kenyatta helped organize the fifth Pan-African Congress, which met in Manchester on Oct. 15-18, 1945, with W.E.B. Du Bois (Da Boyz) of the United States in the chair Kwame Nkrumah, the future leader of Ghana, was also present. Resolutions were passed and plans discussed for mass nationalist movements to demand independence from colonial rule.

Kenyatta returned to Kenya in September 1946 to take up leadership of the newly formed Kenya African Union, of which he was elected president in Jun 1947. From the Kenya African Teachers College, which he directed as an alternative to government educational institutions, Kenyatta organized a mass nationalist party. But he had to produce tangible results in return for the allegiance of his followers, and the colonial government in Kenya was still dominated by unyielding settler interests. The “dangerous explosion” he had predicted in 1930 erupted in Kenya as the Mau Mau rebellion of 1952.

On Oct. 21 1952, Kenyatta was arrested at his home at Gatundu. Police seized documents and arrested 98 other African leaders. Despite government efforts to portray Kenyatta’s trial as a criminal case, it received worldwide publicity as a political proceeding. In April 1953 Kenyatta was sentenced to a seven-year imprisonment for “managing the Mau Mau terrorist organization.” He denied the charge then and afterward, maintaining that the Kenya African Union’s political activities were not directly associated with Mau Mau violence.

The British government responded to African demands by gradually steering the country toward African majority rule. In 1960 the principle of one man-vote was conceded. Kenya nationalist leaders such as Tom Mboya and Oginga Odinga organized the Kenya African National Union (KANU) and elected Kenyatta (still in detention despite having completed his sentence) president in absentia; they refused to cooperate with the British while Kenyatta was detained. In a press conference Kenyatta promised that “Europeans would find a place in the future of Kenya provided they took their place as ordinary citizens.”

Kenyatta was released in August 1961, and, at the London Conference early in 1962, he negotiated the constitutional terms leading to Kenya’s independence. KANU won the preindependence election in May 1963, forming a provisional government; Kenya celebrated its independence on Dec. 12, 1963, with Kenyatta as prime minister.

A year later Kenya became a one-party republic with a strong central government under Kenyatta as president. Kenyatta presided over the complex problems of post independence development and instructed his United Nations delegates on the subtleties of a “non-aligned” foreign policy. Always-in spite of his imprisonment by the British authorities-one of the more pro-British of African leaders, Kenyatta made Kenya the stablest black African country and one that attracted foreign investment on a broad scale. Under his leadership the economy prospered; agriculture, industry, and tourism all expanded. He died at Mombasa in 1978.

From Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol.6, p.808

One note before we get to the listener apprecation segment. I will be away for the next two weeks on a extended business trip without access to my podcasting gear. Before I leave I hope to put up another podcast from Tom Barker on the Mongol Invasion. So stay tuned for that and I will put up another podcast just as soon as I get back from my business trip so please stay subscribed.

The winner of last months book contest was Christian from Higley, Arizona. Christian will be receiving a copy of The Brothers Bulger from the gracious people at Warner Books. We will be delaying the book contest next month, since I won’t be available most of the month.

This episodes frapper mappers are:

1.Tony Paull from Ottowa, Ontario
2.Megan from Medford, MA
3.Mark Sawyer from Portland, Oregon
4.Len from Woodstock, Illinois
5.Leslie Lewis from Huntington Beach, CA

Thank you all for listening. You can reach me via the history hotline at 206 339 7278 thats 206 339 7278. You can also email me at and visit the website at

See you in two weeks!

25 May

HistoryPodcast 63 – Rape Of Nanking



The Nanking Massacre, commonly known as “The Rape of Nanking”, refers to the most infamous of the war crimes committed by the Japanese military during World War II—acts carried out by Japanese troops in and around Nanjing, China, after it fell to the Imperial Japanese Army on December 13, 1937. The duration of the massacre is not clearly defined, although the period of carnage lasted well into the next six weeks, until early February 1938.

During the occupation of Nanking, the Japanese army committed numerous atrocities, such as rape, looting, arson and the execution of prisoners of war and civilians. Although the executions began under the pretext of eliminating Chinese soldiers disguised as civilians, a large number of innocent men were wrongfully identified as enemy combatants and killed. A large number of women and children were also killed, as rape and murder became more widespread.

The extent of the atrocities is hotly debated, with numbers ranging from the claim of the Japanese army at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East that the death toll was military in nature and that no such atrocities ever occurred, to the Chinese claim of a non-combatant death toll of 300,000. The West has generally tended to adopt the Chinese point-of-view, with many Western sources now quoting 300,000 dead. This is in no small part due to the commercial success of Iris Chang’s “The Rape of Nanking”, which set the stage for the debate of the issue in the West; and the existence of extensive photographic records of the mutilated bodies of women and children.

The massacre is a major focal point of burgeoning Chinese nationalism, and in China, opinions are relatively homogenous. In Japan, however, public opinion over the severity of the massacre remains divided. The event continues to be a point of contention in Sino-Japanese relations.

HistoryPodcast 63 – Rape Of Nanking.mp3 13:00 – 12MB


Wikipedia Article


That was Intect opening up the show again. Today our friend Tom Barker will be doing a guest podcast on the rape of nan jing. Stay tuned after the end of Tom’s contribution because today is the last Thursday of the month which means we will be giving away The Brothers Bulger by Howie Carr. Warner Books was nice enough to donate a book to give away to the awesome listeners of HistoryPodcast. A quick word of caustion. This episodes content may be disturbing to some.

Sorry, no transcript for this guest podcast.

Thank you very much Tom! If you would like to contribute your own guest episode to historypodcast please contact me via You can also request a topic by posting it on the forums on the website or calling it in to 206 339 7278 thats 206 339 7278. I look forward to hearing from you.

Now on to our listener appreciation segment.

This past Tuesday was Ron aka the Griddlemaster’s birthday from griddlecakes radio.

There are currently 121 frapper mappers on the map.

Todays frapper mappers are:

  1. Doug Hoyer from Kailua, Hawaii Doug says “Aloha from Hawaii history buffs! Hey, Hey! I am the 1st History Podcast guy from the entire Pacific!”
  2. Xanthippe from Zurich, Switzerland
  3. Rick from Colorado Springs, Colorado. Rick Says “Hi from Colorado springs!”
  4. Robertas from Lithuania
  5. Kirsten McLean from Denver, Colorado

In order to win the book The Brother’s Bulger by Howie Carr answer this question:

We have had two guest podcasters on this month. Who were they?

Send in your answer via email to I will randomly select a winner and let you all know who won on the next show.

18 May

HistoryPodcast 62 – The Cristero War


The struggle between church and state in Mexico broke out in armed conflict during the Cristero War (also known as the Cristiada) of 1926 to 1929. This was a popular uprising against the anti-clerical provisions of the Mexican Constitution of 1917.

After a period of peaceful resistance, a number of skirmishes took place in 1926. The formal rebellion began on January 1, 1927 with the rebels calling themselves Cristeros because they felt they were fighting for Christ himself. Just as the Cristeros began to hold their own against the federal forces, the rebellion was ended by diplomatic means, in large part due to the efforts of U.S. Ambassador Dwight Whitney Morrow.

HP62 – The Cristero War.mp3 16:50 – 15.6MB

Source: Wikipedia Article

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11 May

HistoryPodcast 61 – Francisco Franco


Francisco Franco, sometimes known as Generalísimo Francisco Franco, was the Head of State of Spain in parts of the country from 1936 and in its entirety from 1939 until his death in 1975. He presided over the authoritarian government of the Spanish State following victory in the Spanish Civil War. From 1947, he was de facto regent of Spain. During his rule he was known officially as por la gracia de Dios, Caudillo de España y de la Cruzada, or “by the grace of God, the Leader of Spain and of the Crusade.”

Source for this podcast: Encyclopedia Britannica

HP61 – Francisco Franco.mp3 13:51 – 12.3MB


Killer File – Francisco Franco

Wikipedia Article


Conspiracy and the Spanish Civil War: The Brainwashing of Francisco Franco (Routledge/Canada Blanch Studies in Contemporary Spain)

Francisco Franco: The Times and the Man

Franco: A Concise Biography

Hitler Stopped By Franco

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04 May

HistoryPodcast 60 – History of Societal Responses to Children and New Media


Christy introduces us to the history of societal responses to children and new media.

HP60 – Children New Media.mp3 18:23 – 17MB

Question: Who was the guest podcaster on this episode?

Answer: Christy


Children and Computers: New Technology, Old Concerns”, is from Children and Computer Technology, VOLUME 10, NUMBER 2 – FALL/WINTER 2000


Podcast for Good

TV Listings

Sorry no listings this week

27 April

HistoryPodcast 59 – Rwandan Holocaust


The Rwandan Genocide was the slaughter of an estimated 1 million Tutsis and moderate Hutus, mostly carried out by two extremist Hutu militia groups, the Interahamwe and the Impuzamugambi, during a period of 100 days from April 6th through mid-July 1994.

HP59 – Rwandan Holocaust.mp3 20:19 – 18.7MB

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