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Gertrude Bell | PBS World Explorers

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At the turn of the 20th century, young British adventurer Gertrude Bell left England to travel thousands of miles across Persia, Turkey, and Arabia. Her familiarity with the Arab world allowed her to eventually play a key role in establishing the borders of Iraq after World War I.

The Pizarro Brothers | PBS World Explorers

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Ruthless and determined, the four Pizarro brothers explored and conquered much of what is now Central and South America in the name of the Spanish Crown. Led by oldest brother Francisco, the brothers overthrew one of the largest empires in the New World, the Inca Empire, brutally enslaving the native population.

Henry Hudson | PBS World Explorers

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English explorer Henry Hudson was born at the height of the age of exploration in Europe, as navigators hunted for new routes to Asia. Hudson's multiple voyages in to the arctic in search of a Northwest passage eventually set the stage for British colonial dominance in North America. 

John Smith | PBS World Explorers

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The English explorer John Smith was crucial to the exploration of and establishment of colonies within what is now the Northeastern United States. The first permanent English colony in the New World at Jamestown owes its creation to Smith, as does the mapping of the Chesapeake Bay. 

Grover Cleveland | 60-Second Presidents

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Grover Cleveland's second presidential run was a lot less successful than his first. Take a look at how he handled economic depression, a railroad strike, and a divided Democratic party.

Warren G. Harding | 60-Second Presidents

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Warren G. Harding appealed to the nation's desire for a "return to normalcy." Take a look back on his attempt to do so, and the anxiety and scandal that came along with it.

Herbert Hoover | 60-Second Presidents

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Herbert Hoover was a great organizer but a terrible politician. Check out why his presidency was marked with paralysis during repeated setbacks and overwhelming financial problems.

Rutherford B. Hayes | 60-Second Presidents

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Rutherford B. Hayes's presidency was marked by rising racism in the South. Although prejudiced attitudes persisted in the country, find out the ways that Hayes moved the country forward. If nothing else, he kept his promise of serving only one term.

Grover Cleveland | 60-Second Presidents

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Grover Cleveland was the first president in several decades to push back against Congress. Find out how he used vetoes to regain presidential power and clean up corruption in Washington.

Franklin Pierce | 60-Second Presidents

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Franklin Pierce was good-looking, but not so good at being President. Let's revisit his term, which saw the slavery issue push the nation further towards the brink of the Civil War.

James Buchanan | 60-Second Presidents

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James Buchanan's presidency saw the Dred Scott case and South Carolina's attempted secession. Needless to say, slavery spoiled his time in office. Take a trip down memory lane and learn how the country unraveled into Civil War.

John F. Kennedy | 60-Second Presidents

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John F. Kennedy led two lives, the "idealist" and the "actual." His assassination made him a martyr, obsurring from memory his missteps in foreign affairs and highlighting his domestic acts like founding the Peace Corps.

Amerigo Vespucci | PBS World Explorers

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Amerigo Vespucci was the first person to realize that the land across the Atlantic was not Asia, but a new continent. Vespucci explored the South American coast, journeying down to the Amazon river. 

Francis Drake | PBS World Explorers

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In the race for exploration and colonization during the 16th century, Sir Francis Drake was a famous privateer and explorer known for his raids on Spanish fleets and harbors. While regarded as a hero to England during his life, Drake's violent privateering and involvement in the slave trade makes him a controversial figure today.

Christopher Columbus | PBS World Explorers

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Brilliant explorer? Or violent conqueror? Almost no other explorer inspires as much controversy as Christopher Columbus. Find more about this Italian explorer's historic journey to the Caribbean in 1492. 

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