Season Four - Coming Soon.

Welcome to The Detroit History Podcast. We’ll mine this city’s history, telling the story through its cultural, social, political, musical and automotive heritage. Our chosen tool is the podcast. You can find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher.

Tim Kiska hosts the program, with new episodes being released each Monday later this year. Hope you enjoy.

Season 3 – Episode 05: Far from New Orleans, Long Before Motown, Jazz Became Detroit’s Pulse

The magnet of good-paying factory jobs and the nurturing influence of an excellent public school music program helped make Detroit a hotbed of jazz and the hometown of many internationally famous musicians. This edition of Detroit History Podcast takes a look at when and...

Read More

Season 3 – Episode 04: They Sat Down and Rocked The Boat: Walter Reuther’s Blue-Collar Revolution

He came to Detroit as a high-school dropout raised in hardscrabble West Virginia. The career arc that followed — from diemaker at Henry Ford’s Ford Rouge Plant to confidant of American presidents — marks Walter Reuther as a singular figure in in the U.S....

Read More

Season 3 – Episode 03: From Midnight to Windsor, Detroit’s Underground Railroad

From Dr. King’s march on Woodward to Cobo Hall where he delivered an early version of his “I Have a Dream” speech, to Coleman Young’s election in 1973, to Malcolm X’s days of activism in the city, to the protests of police brutality this...

Read More

Season 3 – Episode 02: How WABX Radio and Plum Street Put the Counter in Counter-Culture

In the late 60s, a thunderously enduring upheaval occurred in the musical and cultural landscape. Young Americans, knowingly or not, were overdue for something other than Top 40 music and crewcuts. The Detroit radio station WABX, ignoring old norms of pop music content and...

Read More

Season 3 – Episode 01: How the Spotlight Found Coleman Young

If anybody was taking bets in the early 1960s, Coleman A. Young would have been a true longshot for getting himself elected to just about anything. He held any number of jobs from the late 1940s to the early 1960s, and ran unsuccessfully for...

Read More

Special Release: Detroit’s Response to the 1918 Spanish Flu

When COVID-19 began to ravage the world, many health experts compared it to the 1918 Spanish Flu. What are the similarities? Nearly 100 years ago, the United States was nearing the end of the First World War. A strange illness appeared overseas that took...

Read More

Let's Get Social

Stay updated with the show and connect with other listeners by following our social media feeds.

Behind The Show

The hardworking Detroit History Podcast is a collaborative effort.

Tim Kiska

Tim Kiska is a professor at the University of Michigan–Dearborn. He worked in journalism at the Detroit Free Press (1970-1987), Detroit News (1987-2002) and WWJ-AM, the CBS-owned all-news radio station. He earned his PhD in history at Wayne State University in 2003, two years after joining the UM-D faculty.

Eric Kiska

Born in Detroit, MI, Eric Kiska is a musician, writer, and lover of the outdoors. Eric graduated with a Bachelors of Science in English Writing and a minor in Art & Design from Northern Michigan University in 2014. Shortly after he had a part-time column for the Motor City Muckraker focusing on music around Detroit. He has also done freelance video editing for Detroit Public TV’s, and helped raised $21,000 for the “BC Surgery Stories” kickstarter campaign by editing the kickstarter video and assisting in social media promotions. Eric is now a mail carrier in Sterling Heights, MI while continuing to pursue a career in writing.

Bob Koski

Bob Koski is a lifelong Detroiter who became warped at the age of eight after seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan in February, 1964. Through a sequence of classical piano lessons, electrical engineering, club deejaying, and eventually being a producer/song parody writer for “J.J. & The Morning Crew” on Detroit radio, he has now morphed into an audio engineer–digitally preserving archival recordings. His love of Beatles music still dominates his life, and he actually got to play one of the Abbey Road studio pianos used in many Beatles recordings.

Bill Kubota

Bill has produced, written, directed and lensed local, regional and national documentaries for broadcast since the 1980s. His national projects include co-producing the Dupont Columbia Journalism award-winning Beyond The Light Switch series for Detroit Public Television. He recently directed the PBS documentary The Ethanol Effect for Detroit Public Television. With his production company, KDN Films, he directed Lustron – The House America’s Been Waiting For working with Ohio State University Public Television and the primetime national network broadcast of Most Honorable Son presented by PBS and NET Nebraska. His work has also appeared on PBS NewsHour, ABC News, CBS News and ESPN. He’s worked as a producer, photographer, on-air reporter and news assignment manager for television stations in Lansing, Flint and Detroit. He’s currently working on short films that look at the major issues facing Detroit for DPTV, One Detroit and DPTV’s Great Lakes Now.

Kelley Kiska

Kelley Kiska is an art, design, pop culture, and information nerd from Grand Blanc, MI. She has been designing and creating visual solutions since 2014, and graduated with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Graphic Communication from Northern Michigan University in 2016. She has created logos and identities for various industries including real estate and online gaming. Most of her days are spent in the digital sphere, but she is also passionate about working with her hands; diving into calligraphy and illustration. She is currently working as a graphic designer and web developer at a paid media shop outside of Ann Arbor.

Tom Ferguson

Ferguson joined the Detroit Free Press news desk at the end of 1967-‘68’s ninety-day newspaper strike, and spent two decades in various editorial jobs. He also worked at the Cleveland Plain Dealer, edited America’s Largest Country Weekly, published a music magazine, edited a health-care newspaper, managed a short-run book publisher, and continues to play piano whenever he finds a bar and grill that will have him.