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-> ''"This weekend on The History Channel, [[Series/AmericanPickers someone digs through old plastic junk]] ("It's a ''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard'' wastebasket!"), [[Series/PawnStars someone else tries to sell a doll head]] ("I used to take the heads off the bodies, and I kept the heads")... and Creator/LarryTheCableGuy taste-tests Tabasco sauce ("I can't feel my dadgum tongue!"). The History Channel. What the hell happened to us?"''
-->-- ''Series/JimmyKimmelLive''

The History Channel is a network that dedicates itself (or [[NetworkDecay once dedicated itself, depending on who you ask]]) to [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin history]]. The network was particularly famous for its sometimes [[AdoredByTheNetwork excessive]] coverage of UsefulNotes/WorldWarII leading some to call it [[FanNickName The Hitler Channel]].

[[NetworkDecay Then]] the channel went through a phase where it was obsessed with ''Literature/TheDaVinciCode'', aliens and [[ApocalypseHow the apocalypse]]. Nowadays, the lineup has favored documentary-style reality shows: Some (''Series/PawnStars'', ''Series/AmericanPickers'') occasionally have something do to with history, especially Americana. Others (''Series/AxMen'', ''Series/IceRoadTruckers'', the [[CulturalTranslation American version of]] ''Series/{{Top Gear|US}}'') [[NetworkDecay don't]]. On most days, there's almost no history-related programming on the schedule. You might get lucky if it's a holiday or other day of historical significance. A sister channel, H2 (formerly History International), is closer to the original History Channel in terms of "historical" programming, though it did adopt a lot of the paranormal programming as well once the name changed.

[[NostalgiaFilter Besides tales of old]], the station is also noted for its weekly show of Series/ModernMarvels which details the history of everyday and not-so-everyday things. History also occasionally plays movies (including original made-for-TV movies), usually either pertaining to a historical event (two of the movies History Channel commissioned were about [[UsefulNotes/JohnFKennedy JFK]] and the infamous Hatfields-[=McCoys=] feud, the latter being one of the most well-received television movies the year it aired) or are historical/cultural artifacts in themselves (it once aired ''Film/DirtyHarry'' for example).

[[DuelingShows Often seen as competing with]] Creator/DiscoveryChannel; both in the days when the two networks primarily aired educational programming and today in [[SnarkBait the race to become Network Decay's poster child]].

!! Shows on this network:

* ''Series/{{Alone}}''
* ''Series/AmericanPickers'' - Two guys go around the country looking for stuff people have in garages and junk piles, that they can sell at a profit.
* ''Series/AmericanRestoration'' - Got a rusty old gas pump, Coke machine or 1930s toy? By the time they're finished working on it, it will look like it just came off the showroom floor.
* ''Series/AncientAliens'' - [[AllMythsAreTrue Are old historical incidents]] like [[Literature/TheBible Adam and Eve]] an incident involving God, or involving an extraterrestrial?
* ''Series/AxMen'' - Cutting timber for a living is dangerous. Really.
* ''Series/BarbariansRising'' - An actual historical series, a {{docudrama}} depicting the wars between the UsefulNotes/RomanEmpire and the other peoples of Europe.
* ''Series/{{Conquest}}''
* ''Series/CountingCars''
* ''Series/DogFights''
* ''Series/FullMetalJousting''
* ''Series/{{Gangland}}''
* ''Series/{{Gangland Undercover}}''
* ''Series/GodGunsAndAutomobiles''
* ''Series/GreatMindsWithDanHarmon''
* ''Series/IceRoadTruckers'' - In some parts of Alaska and Canada, there are places so far out that there aren't any roads. There are, however, rivers, lakes and parts of the ocean frozen so solid you can drive an 18-wheeler over the ice.
* ''Series/JurassicFightClub'' - Which of two dinosaurs or other prehistoric creatures would win in a fight?
* ''Series/LifeAfterPeople'' - [[TagLine Welcome to earth.]] [[OnceAnEpisode Population: zero.]]
* ''Series/TheMenWhoBuiltAmerica'' - Focuses on TheGildedAge and the wealthy industrialists who guided the development of the United States.
* ''Series/ModernMarvels'' - Many things we use or have been developed involve a lot of complicated work to exist or be produced. And this shows the background of them.
* ''Mail Call'' and ''Lock and Load'', with host Creator/RLeeErmey.
* ''Series/PawnStars'' - Consider four guys in Las Vegas that run a pawn shop, and the things that get sold there or bought by them.
* ''Series/TheRevolution2006'': Focuses on the events of UsefulNotes/TheAmericanRevolution.
* ''[[Series/{{Roots|2016}} Roots (2016)]]'': A 2016 remake of [[Series/{{Roots}} the original 1977 miniseries]].
* ''Series/SonsOfLiberty'': A scripted miniseries dramatizing the actions of the Founding Fathers leading up to UsefulNotes/TheAmericanRevolution.
* ''Series/SwampPeople'' - Making a living by collecting the resources of the Everglades and other, similar swamps.
* ''Series/TheBible2013''
* ''Series/TopGearUS''
* ''Series/TopShot'' - Win $100,000 by being the best all-around marksman/woman in a field of 16.
** ''Series/TopGuns'' - Spin off of Series/TopShot, shows various antique guns and other ordnance and how they are used.
* ''Series/{{Vikings}}'' - Premiering in March 2013, the show is a scripted series based on the medieval Viking sagas of Ragnar Lodbrok.
* ''Series/WildWestTech'' - Explores the technology of TheWildWest.
* ''Series/WWIIInHD'' - High Definition video and color films about World War II.

!! Tropes featured:

* AncientAstronauts: There is a disturbing number of shows on the channel that subscribe to crazy alien theories of human history. Seemingly, it's barely second-fiddle to History's reality line-up. Though it's been moved to H2 now you can still catch ''Series/AncientAliens'' airing occasionally.
* ApocalypseHow: A fair few shows dedicated to either the end of the world or something in the likeness (what if a wildfire burned Los Angeles?). Needless to say the 2012 MayanDoomsday hype also made its way to the network programming in the few years preceding its date.
** ''Series/LifeAfterPeople'' notably averts this, and just talks about what happens to buildings and animals after the apocalypse. [[{{Subversion}} It goes out of its way]] specifically ''not'' to mention [[MacGuffin how people disappeared]]. It also assumes whatever killed them left everything else intact (not even bones of then living people are left, though older bodies remain), but pets are left behind (which in many cases is a FateWorseThanDeath).
* ConspiracyTheory: A few. This channel should really change its name to "The WildMassGuessing Channel" from now on.
* DamnedByFaintPraise: ''Series/BarbariansRising'', airing as it did post-NetworkDecay, drew praise from critics for among other things [[http://www.wsj.com/articles/barbarians-rising-review-the-other-side-of-history-1465241572 actually being a historical documentary.]]
* DanBrowned: Do ''not'' take everything you see on this channel as truth. Actual fact count may vary.
* HollywoodHistory: Arguably more frequent after NetworkDecay, although it was present even before then (see FanNickname).
* OfferVoidInNebraska: In Canada, there was a previously-unrelated network called History Television. Ads for History on A&E (which has historically been carried on cable in Canada) always reminded viewers that it was [[MemeticMutation "not available in Canada"]]. Thanks to NetworkDecay and an eventual over-reliance on History Channel programming, the network's current owner Shaw ultimately licensed the actual History Channel brand, and also re-branded Creator/{{SpikeTV}} clone The Cave (itself formerly [=MenTV=]) into H2.
* RatedMForManly: Hey, ''Series/{{Vikings}}'' is on this network.
* SpeculativeDocumentary: ''Life After People'' being an example.
* StockFootage: Scenes originally filmed for History Channel programs have a bad habit of being recycled on completely unrelated programs or features. A lot. Often, the later programs' scripts will wander blatantly off-topic so they can pad things out with footage already in their clip library.
* ThoseWackyNazis: Just about any time UsefulNotes/WorldWarII in Europe is discussed.