Television's most-watched history series, American Experience has been hailed as "peerless" (Wall Street Journal), "the most consistently enriching program on television" (Chicago Tribune), and "a beacon of intelligence and purpose" (Houston Chronicle). Discover the incredible characters and epic stories that have shaped America’s past and present.
American Experience: "Klansville U.S.A."
Having been dormant for decades, the Ku Klux Klan reemerged in the U.S. after the 1954 Supreme Court Brown v. Board of Education decision, gaining momentum in the U.S. as the civil rights movement grew. That the Klan would rise once again wasn't surprising, but where the reincarnation took place was. North Carolina was long considered the most progressive southern state; its image was being burnished weekly on CBS by the enormously popular "The Andy Griffith Show." In 1963, North Carolina salesman Bob Jones chartered what would become the largest Klan group in the country, which, under his leadership, grew to some ten thousand members. In the process, the group helped give the Tarheel State a new nickname: "Klansville, U.S.A."
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Examine the life of the man who would be remembered as the genius who created the modern world.
Investigate the reasons North Carolina became home to the largest Klan organization in the country.
Ripley: Believe It or Not!
Witness the emergence of LeRoy Robert Ripley's razzle-dazzle entertainment empire and meet the man at the center of it all.
Cold War Roadshow
Revisit Nikita Khrushchev’s historic 1959 visit to America at the height of the Cold War.
The Big Burn
Learn the story of a wildfire that devoured more than three million acres in the Rockies in 1910.
Originally aired in March 2011. Rebroadcast in June 2014
The hits and the highlights from WGBH