I listen wide variety of podcasts. I listen in the car and on walks, and since I don’t have a TV, I listen when I’m cooking, cleaning, or just hanging around the house. Podcasts are a great way to learn new stuff!
One of the history podcasts that I listen to is Ben Franklin’s World: A Podcast About Early American History. The host, Dr. Liz Covart, interviews experts about America in the colonial, revolutionary, and early republic periods. She is also the Digital Projects Editor at the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture.
I really like the format, in which the host interviews one guest. Each episode is about an hour long, so they have time to delve into the topic under discussion. The topics include politics, war, individuals, culture, slavery, daily life, and religion.
There is a Ben Franklin’s World group page on Facebook and Dr. Covart is active on Twitter. Besides history, I know from Twitter that Dr. Covart is also a Boston Red Sox fan. On Twitter I have also seen many comments from teachers who use this podcast in their classrooms. Along with the factual information gained from listening, there are also many tips about resources to use for good historical research.
Early American history is not my primary area of study, but I still listen to all the Ben Franklin’s World episodes. Even if the episode title doesn’t sound interesting to me, I know I will always pick up bits of unexpected information.
The current episode is #260, but if that is overwhelming and you don’t know where to start, I’ll give you links to some of my favorite episodes. Of course, you can also just subscribe to the podcast and listen to the episodes as they appear.
Episode 252: Matthew Dziennik, The Highland Soldier in North America
Episode 244: Kimberly Alexander, Shoe Stories from Early America
Episode 239: Joseph Adelman, Post & Travel in Early America
Episode 219: Adrian Covert, Taverns in Early America
Episode 216: Lisa Wilson, A History of Stepfamilies in America
Episode 192: Brian Regal, The Secret History of the New Jersey Devil
I hope you listen, enjoy, and learn something!