An Accurate Account of “The Men Who Built America” Part 1

The History Channel recently aired a dreadfully inaccurate mini-series called The Men Who Built America. It was billed as a historical account of the careers of businessmen Cornelius Vanderbilt, John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, JP Morgan, and Henry Ford; but it was basically all fiction.

I love America’s great rags-to-riches success stories, so I tuned in eagerly to see how the History people would tell them. After each of the four episodes I vented my disappointment by publishing a blog post exposing some of the more glaring inaccuracies. In my post about the last episode I lamented that an honest and accurate account of this era would have been far more entertaining that the fiction History  put on the air.
Continue reading »

The Men Who Built America Episode IV – Still Phony

This is the fourth in a series of reviews of the History Channel’s four-part series The Men Who Built America.

Click here to read Al Fuller’s review of the first episode.

Click here to read Al’s review of the second episode.

Click Here to read Al’s review of the third episode.

***********

The History Channel aired the fourth and final episode of its The Men Who Built America series Sunday night, and like the first three installments, this one is terribly inaccurate. It’s a crying shame that the series contained so little real history; there are no end of fascinating and true stories about the great nineteenth century entrepreneurs, and an accurate version of this series would be good TV.
Continue reading »

The Men Who Built America Episode III – Less than Accurate

The History Channel aired the third installment of its The Men Who Built America series Tuesday, and, like the first two, this episode was less than accurate. In my review of the first episode I describe the many creative liberties the producers took in their efforts to jazz up the stories for a television audience. The second part of this four part series was even more inaccurate, just “fiction in a period setting.”

The third part is not as completely un-historical as the second, but there are several places where accuracy is sacrificed for the sake of drama.
Continue reading »