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The History Fangirl Podcast

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An interview show about historic places for history lovers and travel enthusiasts. Stephanie Craig is a history and travel blogger. She travels full time and writes at https://historyfangirl.com.

An interview show about historic places for history lovers and travel enthusiasts. Stephanie Craig is a history and travel blogger. She travels full time and writes at https://historyfangirl.com.
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An interview show about historic places for history lovers and travel enthusiasts. Stephanie Craig is a history and travel blogger. She travels full time and writes at https://historyfangirl.com.






No Place Like It: A History of Singapore

On today’s episode of the History Fangirl Podcast, we talk with Ravi Mehta, host of The Wealth of Nations podcast. If you’ve ever traveled through southeast Asia, you know the one place you do not want to stop is Singapore, unless you’re flush with cash. How did this small nation on the Malay peninsula come to have such a crazy economy? Ravi walks us through the history of Singapore, how it got to where it is today, and where it’s headed. If you want to talk Singapore, you have to talk to...


Josiah Henson and the Underground Railroad

I lived in South Philadelphia for seven years, and knew very little about the area’s connection to the Civil War or the Underground Railroad. But just a couple years ago, I read a story about how a house not far from where I used to live was actually visited by Harriet Tubman. And I think this is how many Americans live, right on top of history, particularly the history of the Civil War and the Underground Railroad, and don’t even realize it. My guest today, Jared Brock, author of The Road...


Roskilde: The Vikings Go to Denmark

On today’s episode of the History Fangirl Podcast, we talk with Noah Tetzner, host of the fantastic The History of Vikings Podcast. Vikings have come up a few times on this show, including their time in Iceland’s Thingvellir and their sacking of Lindisfarne. So this time we turn to another sliver of lesser-known Viking history and talk about their time in Denmark. As Noah tells me in this episode, while the Vikings may have a reputation for violence and pillaging, they were actually a...


An Irreverent History of Disney World

On today’s very special episode of the History Fangirl Podcast, I, a Disney Skeptic, try to figure out why anyone over the age of nine would ever want to go to Disney World. And luckily, for this task I have Maggie Garvin on the show. Maggie is not only the hilarious blogger behind Mags on the Move, she’s also a huge Disneyphile, a former Disney employee, and the perfect person to convince me to head to Orlando, Florida. On this episode we talk about the origins of Walt Disney World, how...


Space Tourism in Houston, Texas

While the History Fangirl Podcast has typically gone around the world to find the most fascinating stories, today we’re taking our eyes off the Earth and casting our gaze starward. Today’s guest is Valerie Stimac, an accomplished travel writer in her own right, who has started a unique site at spacetravelguide.com. While she isn’t quite making recommendations for the burgeoning field of travel into space, Valerie does specialize in covering travel destinations that are of interest to...


The Storied History of the Guinness Storehouse

On today’s episode of the History Fangirl Podcast, we’re talking with someone who has arguably the coolest job in the field of history, and one you may not have even known about. My guest today is Fergus Brady, the archives manager at the Guinness Storehouse. The archives contain everything about one of the most famous beer companies in the world, including the founding documents of Guinness signed in 1759. As Fergus tells us, there’s a great tradition of record keeping within the Guinness...


Penn Station: Sacrficial Lamb

If you’ve ever been to New York City, there’s a good chance you traveled through Penn Station at some point. And then you instantly regretted it. On today’s episode, my guest is Greg Young of the famous Bowery Boys podcast, and we talk about the sad history of Penn Station, and what it can mean for the rest of the country, not just New York City. And while the story of Penn Station is sad, Greg promises to wrap it up in an optimistic, or hopeful, package. Does he succeed? You’ll have to...


The Colorful History of Lindisfarne

Maybe you’ve heard of the Book of Kells or the Gospel of Lindisfarne: These illuminated manuscripts are not only high works of religious text, but doors that open history to current scholars. Today on the show we’re talking about Lindisfarne, the island on the northern edge of England, where the monks who wrote that book lived My guest today is Dr. Michael Drout. He’s a professor at Wheaton College in Massachusetts and the author of How Tradition Works and Tradition and Influence, and the...


The Lost History of Angkor

Angkor, along with its most famous temple Angkor Wat, is one of the most unique places in the world. The French claim to have discovered it when Cambodia was part of French Indochina, but like so many “lost” places the locals always knew about it. However, much of what we know about the ancient city comes from inscriptions and other artwork on the temple. And because the jungle climate much of the other information we have about the city may be lost forever, but we do know that it was the...


Belfast and the Troubles

Belfast is many different things to many different people. It’s both the second-largest city on the island of Ireland and the capital of Northern Ireland. With Brexit looming, Belfast’s attachment to the United Kingdom grows ever more tenuous. But wasn’t that long ago that Belfast was wracked with sectarian violence rooted in class and religious divisions, known as the Troubles. April will mark the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, which was the culmination of the peace...


Birmingham and the Civil Rights Movement

With just a week left in office, President Barack Obama signed a proclamation declaring the Birmingham, Alabama Civil Rights District a national monument. Birmingham played a pivotal role in the civil rights movement in America in the 1950s and ‘60s. Prominent figures like Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. were both active in the community, and the city long ago captured the hearts and imaginations of the nation. On this week’s episode, I talk with Barry McNealy,...


Windsor Castle

England’s Windsor Castle has been home to 39 British monarchs, with its history stretching back nearly 1,000 years to William the Conqueror. My guest today is Deborah Cadbury, the author of Queen Victoria’s Matchmaking: The Royal Marriages That Shaped Europe, among many other books. We chat about the illustrious history of the castle, what historical events took place within its walls, and what it was like to do research in the Windsor Castle archives. British history buffs will not want...


Bangkok and the Kingdom of Siam

In January I took a trip to Southeast Asia, and—somewhat arbitrarily—I decided to make Bangkok, Thailand my first stop. Ever since being entranced by the famed musical The King and I as a kid, I’ve been fascinated with the Kingdom of Siam, and have been cognizant of the push and pull of tradition and colonization that Siam and so many countries have experienced. My guest today to talk about the history of Bangkok and Siam is Charles Kimball of the History of Southeast Asia podcast. Charles...


How Bordeaux Got Its Wine

In September I got to go to Bordeaux with a friend who is a 100% certified wine snob. I figured she would enjoy all of the wine, while I mostly focused on getting work done. But I was surprised by how easily I fell in love with the city, one of France’s most underrated destinations, even if you’re not certified. My guest today is Megan Stetzel, one half of the team behind the millennial-focused travel blog, Why Wait to See the World? On this week’s episode, we talk about how the city got...


The Literary Pubs of Dublin

I recently got to take an amazing trip to Dublin, Ireland, working with the Irish tourism board. And one of the amazing things about working with a tourism board is that you get to see things that you might not normally see, or at least see them in a new light. That was the case for me with the Literary Pub Crawl of Dublin. It was a four-day excursion, and we got to see how the city’s pub culture fostered a literary and drama culture (and, we got to drink some great beer). My guest today...


A Very Special Q&A

This week marks the six-month episode of the podcast, and to celebrate I conducted a live Q&A with listeners and Facebook followers on Facebook Live. That last sentence is only half true, as the real reason this episode is a Q&A is because my shaky wifi in Malaysia scuttled the interview that was planned for this week. But! This is a good opportunity to celebrate the show’s half-anniversary with listeners, so I took questions and comments left on Facebook, my blog and the podcast about...


The Hermit Kingdom of Albania

When you think of an isolated, walled-off country, your mind might immediately go to North Korea. But during the Communist era, Albania may have actually been even more secluded, despite the fact it shared a border with Greece. On today’s episode, my guest is Allison Green, author of the Eternal Arrival blog, part of the Condé Nast Traveler blog network. We talk about what life was like in Albania after its independence from the Ottoman Empire, how the country became a pawn between Hitler...


The Grand Place

Brussels, Belgium is an often-overlooked city, with neighboring capitals of Amsterdam and Paris stealing the spotlight. But Belgium is definitely much more than just great beer and chocolate. My guest today is Drew Vahrenkamp of The Wonders of the World podcast, and we sit down to chat about Brussels’ La Grand-Place, or Grand Place, the city’s central square. Drew is a self-described Belgiumphile, having studied there while in business school. As he told me, on his first trip to Brussels,...


The Oracle of Delphi

Visiting Greece can be overwhelming, with the number of historical landmarks to visit. But the Oracle of Delphi, high up in the mountains, is one of the most beautiful, and most memorable, places to visit. The history of the site is enthralling, the views are enchanting, and everywhere you look, you see echoes of why the Greeks thought this was the home of a god. My guest today is Ryan Stitt of The History of Ancient Greece podcast. Ryan and I chat about what the Greeks actually did when...


The Brooklyn Bridge

The construction of the Brooklyn Bridge changed New York City forever, connecting the suburb to Manhattan, and establishing the borough as a vital part of the city’s life and culture. It’s easy to look at a bridge now and say, “Of course that bridge had to be built.” But why, exactly, did city leaders want to connect Brooklyn and Manhattan, how did the people who lived there at the time feel about it, and how did elephants help make the bridge a landmark? Today, my guest is Ariel Viera...


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