History Happy Hour

One of the best parts of going on a Stephen Ambrose Historical Tour is crowding into the bar at happy hour to discuss the places you have been and kibbitz over history tidbits.

Each Sunday at 4pm EDT, host historians Christopher Anderson in London and Rick Beyer in Chicago each grab a cocktail and go live to talk history (and maybe some smack) during History Happy Hour. They welcome fascinating and knowledgeable guests such as authors Andrew Roberts, Joe Balkoski, Lynne Olson, and Hampton Sides for entertaining history discussions. And you get to join the conversation as well with questions and comments.

The bar is open every Sunday at 4 PM ET on the Stephen Ambrose Historical Tours Facebook page and YouTube channel.

History Happy Hour, the spot where history is always on tap.

This Week on HHH – Marian Anderson


On Easter Sunday, 1939, contralto Marian Anderson stepped up to a microphone in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Inscribed on the walls of the monument behind her were the words “all men are created equal.” Barred from performing in Constitution Hall because of her race, Anderson would sing for the American people in the open air. 75,000 people saw her perform, while the whole nation could hear her via radio. This landmark moment, and Anderson’s rich history, are the subject of a new PBS American Experience documentary Voice of Freedom.

This week on History Happy Hour, host-historians Chris Anderson and Rick Beyer talk about the film with one of the historians who appeared in it, Adriane Lentz-Smith from Duke University. Marian Anderson – Voice of Freedom, this Sunday at 4PM On History Happy Hour, the spot where history is always on tap.


This Week’s Guest – Adriane Lentz Smith


Adriane Lentz-Smith is Associate Professor and Associate Chair in Duke’s department of History where she teaches courses on the Civil Rights Movement, Black Lives, Modern America, and History in Fact and Fiction. A scholar of African American history as well as the histories of the twentieth-century United States and the US & the World, Lentz Smith is author of Freedom Struggles: African Americans and World War I (Harvard University Press, 2009). Her work has been featured on various radio programs and podcasts as well as in a number of documentaries, including prize-winning The Jazz Ambassadors and the PBS American Experience documentary, The Great War.


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History Happy Hour Reading List

Chris and Rick have put together a list of books that they and their guests have recommended or mentioned on the show. Read on!

HHH Reading List >>

Upcoming History Happy Hours

Sunday January 24


Topic:  Marian Anderson, Voice of Freedom

Guest:  Historian Adriane Lentz-Smith Ph.D., history professor at Duke University


Sunday January 31


Topic:  Bugging the German Generals in WWII

Guest:  Helen Fry, author, The Walls Have Ears:  The Greatest Intelligence Operation of World War II


Sunday February 7 


Topic:  The Roman Emperor Pertinaz

Guest:  Simon Elliott, author, Pertinax: The Son of a Slave Who Became Roman Emperor


Sunday February 14


Topic:  Nazi Hunting

Guest:  Philipe Sands, author,  Ratline:  Love, Lies and Justice on the Trail of a Nazi Fugitive


Sunday February 21


Topic: The Battle of Fredericksburg

Guest: John Matteson, author, A Worse Place Than Hell: How the Civil War Battle of Fredericksburg Changed a Nation 


History Happy Hour Playlist

What have you missed? Check out all episodes of History Happy Hour: