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Category: History

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 Feb 4, 2020


The best source on our cultural identity is not the official, historical record — ask any anthropologist, it’s the town dump. Ephemera — those things that were just barely saved, and in some cases not saved at all — emanate with secrets we can only glimpse and mysteries we can never completely answer. The stories may be unfamiliar, but the themes are universal; this is a looking glass, a window into our own fragile, material existence that begs the question, “How will I be remembered?”

Episode Date
Thanksgiving Leftovers
With so much to be grateful for this year, we wanted to express our thanks by sharing some of our favorite, never-before-aired clips from four interviews of the past season. Featuring Ian Nagoski, David Weinstein, Sarah Wasserman, and Elizabeth Cobbs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers
Nov 26, 2019
Introducing: The Second Oil Age
When an oil executive goes missing aboard the deep-sea Atlas Station, the company sends agent Synøve Pan down for answers — and she’s just the woman to get them. Immerse yourself in a post–energy-crisis world in which humanity’s thirst for oil is satisfied through a bargain with a mysterious deep-sea species. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers
Nov 08, 2019
The Haunted Orchard
A traveller seeking solitude finds it at an old farmhouse in which everything seems forgotten and yet remembered. Written by Richard Le Gallienne. Narrated by Peter Yearsley. Learn more at ephemeral.show Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers
Oct 28, 2019
Handmade Records
Why put music on plastic in 2019? Featuring Seth Nicholas Johnson of Haunted Birthday Records and the music of Elias Mason & June Yorke, pumashock, and Undercover Monsters. 

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Sep 30, 2019
The Tallest Rock
A strange left turn in the story of Merigail Moreland. 
Aug 28, 2019
Taped Over Interview: Matt Frederick
A conversation with our producer Matt on family, recording, and all things ephemeral. Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jul 22, 2019
Taped Over
Who records your family’s history? Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jul 15, 2019
Sounds of Silence
Four minutes and thirty three seconds that changed the course of music history. Featuring musicologist & composer Kyle Gann. Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jul 08, 2019
WWI, women’s suffrage, and one of the most important inventions of the 20th century: the telephone. Interview with historian Elizabeth Cobbs, author of "The Hello Girls: America’s First Women Soldiers." Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jul 01, 2019
Sketch + Puzzle
How much paper is printed every day? Who's designing it and who's keeping on tabs on how much we have? Featuring interviews with crossword constructor Matt Gaffney and Steven Peterman of The Sketchbook Project. Learn more at ephemeral.show

Jun 24, 2019
What if you had a song stuck in your head, but had no way to find out anything about the artist? The mystery of an unlabelled record unravels year-over-year. Featuring an interview with reel-to-reel tape collector Bob Purse of the blog Inches Per Second. Learn more at ephemeral.show
Jun 17, 2019
In their four story brownstone at the corner of Fifth Avenue & 128th Street, the Collyer brothers sealed themselves up through the Great Depression, both World Wars, and as Harlem shifted from a rich white suburb to a poor black slum. In the cavernous dwelling, the pair amassed "one of the world’s legendary collections of urban junk." Two-hundred tons of junk by the end. Featuring memoirist Franz Lidz. Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jun 10, 2019
At the outset of commercial television, there were just four networks. Three you’ve heard of – they are still around today. The fourth is almost entirely forgotten. Featuring an interview with media historian David Weinstein of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Learn more at www.ephemeral.show
Jun 03, 2019
You’re telling me people actually like this old stuff? What is ephemera and why is it worth studying? Interview with Sarah Wasserman, professor of Material Culture Studies at the University of Delaware. Learn more at ephemeral.show
May 27, 2019
What makes American music American? If the history book is written, what chapters are missing? Featuring music researcher Ian Nagoski of Canary Records.
May 20, 2019
Found objects – misplaced artifacts of mysterious origins – can be sources great of inspiration.
May 20, 2019
Trailer: Answering Machine
Lost materials, dropped threads, forgotten stories. Ephemera in the way that it’s intertwined in our lives. All those things, tangible and intangible, that you wish you could take just one more look at before they vanish into the past. Ephemeral debuts May 20th. Subscribe now and learn more at ephemeral.show
May 13, 2019