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CriticalPast is an interesting site that has a collection of more than 57,000 historic video clips and 7 million photos that are royalty-free, available to watch for free online and can be downloaded at an affordable price. You’ll find video clips of the first steam engine, World War II, the Vietnam War and many more.

You can also enter your birth date on the sidebar and it will show historic videos for that specific day in history.

historic video clips

Most of the videos and pictures are of historic events that occurred in the U.S. That’s because the data is collected mainly from U.S. government agency sources.

Both videos and photos can be ordered in variety of formats and are available for immediate download. Prices start at $1.97 and go higher according to your requirements. You can also get still photos from the site as professionally printed photos.


  • Comprehensive historic video archives online
  • Watch online for free. Buy high resolution versions starting at $1.97.
  • Data mainly drawn from U.S. government agency sources.
  • Images and clips are royalty-free.

Check out CriticalPast@

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  1. Andy
    June 30, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    Thanks for the review! One note:
    Although the collection is drawn from U.S. government agency sources, it shows events from over 4,000 locations worldwide; not just events in the United States.
    As you noted, all are available for immediate download in a variety of consumer and professional formats.
    Andy Erickson