The HISTORY® Channel, Higher Ground, Pushkin Industries, and Audible Collaborate on Original Podcast Exploring the History and Legacy of America’s Reconstruction Era

The HISTORY® Channel is expanding its presidential footprint with the development of a new podcast with President Obama and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground, Pushkin Industries, and Audible, it was announced today by Paul Buccieri, President and Chairman of A+E Networks. Produced by Higher Ground Audio, Malcolm Gladwell’s Pushkin Industries, and Audible, the currently untitled eight-part podcast explores the history and legacy of America’s Reconstruction Era. From 1863 to 1873, America had the opportunity to reimagine American society from the roots of its economy to the very nature of citizenship itself. The podcast highlights the missed opportunities and complicated legacy of that period while also looking ahead at the lessons that can be gleaned for our future.

“We are incredibly honored to partner with Higher Ground to tell an important part of history that, we agree with President Obama, has been overlooked,” said Buccieri. “In highlighting stories and presenting the facts of our shared past, no matter how difficult or uncomfortable, we aim to inspire listeners to ask questions, bring new perspectives, and spark ideas of change that will move our nation forward together.”

“We’re excited to work with this esteemed group to shed light on an area of our nation’s past that can provide integral lessons for our future,” said Rachel Ghiazza, Chief Content Officer at Audible. “Our collaboration with Higher Ground has been thrilling, with our audience clamoring for more — more conversation, more insight, and more enlightenment. This is an extremely important dialogue and we’re grateful for the opportunity to share it worldwide.”

“The Pushkin team is delighted to be partnering with President and Mrs. Obama in telling these vital stories of America’s past in the hopes of shaping a better future,” says Gretta Cohn, Pushkin’s CEO. “We’re excited to make an unforgettable series that will inspire and engage a broad audience.”

The 8-part podcast will begin where, for most Americans, the story ends: The North is victorious, and slavery is abolished. During the ten-year span of Reconstruction, the United States had a unique opportunity to create a society that was equitable and just for all. Instead, despite the addition of three new amendments to the Constitution that were meant to grant equal rights to formerly enslaved people, social and political challenges, devastating violence, and unsuccessful leadership squandered that opportunity and eventually led to the struggle of societal reintegration for African American citizens. Anchored by credible voices across history, education, literature and journalism, each podcast episode aims to illuminate the era, as well as the stakes at play. The series explores key themes such as: Black political power, the economic ruin of the South and the consequences that followed, the media industry’s selective retelling of the Reconstruction Era, and beyond.

Higher Ground, an Academy Award® and Emmy® Award-winning media company, collaborates with Audible on hit podcasts under their first-look deal. Michelle Obama: The Light Podcast, an Audible Original, features Michelle Obama’s inspiring conversations with esteemed friends like Ellen DeGeneres, Tyler Perry, Conan O’Brien, and Oprah Winfrey. Your Mama’s Kitchen: Conversations from the Heart of the Home, another Audible Original produced by Higher Ground, features acclaimed journalist Michele Norris and guests exploring the complexities of family life and how their earliest culinary experiences helped shape their personal and professional lives. Higher Ground’s other hit podcasts also include The Big Hit Show, a series of audio documentaries hosted by Alex Pappademas focused on pieces of popular culture that have defined and changed our culture; Renegades: Born in the USA, a series of conversations between President Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen; The Michelle Obama Podcast, and The Sum of Us podcast series, based on Heather McGhee’s bestselling book.

A+E Networks holds worldwide distribution rights to this currently untitled podcast.