Modern Marvels - Season 3

Wednesday 10:00 PM on The History Channel Premiered Jan 01, 1995 In Season


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Episode Guide

  • The Railroads That Tamed the West
    The year was 1869 and America had just completed the greatest building achievement in its history--the Transcontinental Railroad. A thin ribbon of steel and wood now connected East and West. But the fledgling country now faced an even greater challenge--how to harness the awesome potential of the railroad to tame the still wide-open and wild West.moreless
  • The NYC Subway
    Episode 8
    New York subway system's riders, workers and street performers make it a microcosm of city life.
  • Oil
    Episode 7
    From the first well in Pennsylvania to the gushing Spindletop and modern supertankers, the story of oil is the story of civilization as we know it. We'll take a look at the ingenious and outrageous men who risked everything for "black gold" and unimaginable wealth.
  • Paving America
    Episode 6
    The story of the construction of our grand national highway system, from its beginnings in 1912 (it was conceived by auto and headlight tycoons) to its completion in 1984 (when the last stoplight was removed--and buried).
  • Tennessee Valley Authority
    During the depths of the Great Depression, it was FDR's greatest triumph: A massive public works project that took a 40,000 square mile, disaster-prone river basin, and turned it into a model of industrial progress.
  • Tunnels
    Episode 4
    Modern Marvel's Tunnels discusses though tunnels are a dangerous architectural project, they are part of our society. Tunnels were first created during Babylonian times by Brunel and Greathead, who created a shield that allowed them to travel under the Thames River. More recently, Clifford Holland overcame the odds and carved his 8,463 foot path under the Hudson River. Few of the tunnel architects see their finished water tunnels because of the dangers of the unforgiving waters. The workers constructing New York's new water tunnel are facing the same dangers and impending death.moreless
  • Silver Mines
    Silver Mines
    Episode 3
    It was called the "mother lode", a deposit of silver so massive that it would produce $300-million in its first 25 years of operation, establish Nevada as a state, and bankroll the Union Army in the Civil War. Named after an early investor, we'll see how the Comstock Lode, discovered near Virginia City, proved to be a scientific laboratory from which vast improvements in mining technology and safety were pioneered, including innovations in drilling, ventilation, drainage, and ore processing.moreless
  • Brooklyn Bridge
    Episode 2
    The Brooklyn Bridge was not only a landmark, but also the first bridge of its kind. No one had ever used steel for construction, nor used cables of metal, nor built a suspension bridge so long. Until one man dared to try. In 19th-century New York, where buildings were no more than five stories tall, engineer John Roebling’s soaring and majestic Brooklyn Bridge was nothing short of a technological miracle. But Roebling's innovation led to an uphill battle against the elements, corrupt politicians, and scientists who claimed the first strong wind would collapse the bridge to rubble.moreless
  • Space Shuttle
    Space Shuttle
    Episode 1
    For generations, scientists and science-fiction writers alike dreamed of a reusable "space plane" a durable, maneuverable ship that would make trips to the heavens commonplace.

    Now, Modern Marvels takes a look at how a team from NASA made that dream real by developing the most extraordinary machine in history the revolutionary Space Shuttle.

    This comprehensive program tells the complete story of the Shuttle, from its conception in the 1950s to its triumphant launch in 1981. Expert interviews, computer simulations and spectacular footage from its missions offer an insider's view of its successes and failures, including the devastating Challenger disaster that nearly grounded the Shuttle program forever. Finally, NASA officials offer an exclusive peek at the next generation Space Shuttle, the futuristic X-33.moreless