CriticalPast in the News

September 21, 2014 The Fidel Archive Case Study: Inside a PBS / NGC International Copro
...We asked Tom to describe his ‘Big 5’ challenges: “Finding as much footage as possible where Castro speaks English. It’s out there, and we found it from NBC, CBS, Critical Past, Yale University Archives, CBC Canada"...Read More
May 1, 2013 Broadcasting Board of Governors, BBG Strategy:
Five Tools for Cheaper Channels from NAB 2013
...worth a look is Critical Past, a company that has been aggregating historical footage such as the classic Universal Newsreels — good stuff for documentaries and the like...Read More
April 19, 2012 Recovered Letters Reveal the Lost History of the Hindenburg
...The Smithsonian's National Postal Museum has created a new exhibit around the twin catastrophes called "Fire & Ice: Hindenburg and Titanic," focusing on letters that were recovered, and the stories they can tell about the people who were unlucky enough to be there. One of the most exciting finds featured in the exhibit is the sole surviving map of the Hindenburg's last trans-Atlantic journey, as Cheryl R. Ganz, the chief curator of the Postal Museum, explains in a short documentary from Smithsonian magazine...
...The archival footage is from a web site called Critical Past. In the completed video, we used two sets of archival footage. The crash scene in the beginning of the video is from a newsreel that probably ran in movie theaters in 1937. The audio in the beginning of the video is not from the newsreel. The famous dramatic description of the Hindenburg crash is of Herbert Morrison who delivered the famous line, "Oh, the humanity." The other piece of archival footage is seen at the very end overlaid with the map and shows the Hindenburg in flight....Read More and Watch the video.

February 22, 2012 4 Stock Video Websites To Catch A Glimpse Of History Captured On Film
CriticalPast is an attractively designed website which features 57000 videos and 7 million images. It could rank among the ones with the largest privately held archival collections in the world...Read More
August 24, 2011 Howard Maltin's "Movie Crazy" - Rare Footage Unearthed Online
...My pal Jerry Beck, of "Cartoon Brew," recently sent me a link to a sequence I’d never encountered before, which streams on a site called Critical Past...
...Like many other people, I have my gripes with the Internet, but there is no question that it has opened doors to some extraordinary collections of research materials—including film footage like this. Keep it coming!...Read More

May 22, 2011 Hot Sites - Episode 4
Video coverage of CriticalPast from Australia's CyberShack TV (CBN Media).  Watch Video...
January 1, 2011 Critical clips
The U.S. National Archives, maintained by the U.S. government and featuring a wealth of historical materials accessible to any American citizen, is a treasure trove of amazing footage for producers. It also requires the patience of Job to wade through.

Thus, it’s no surprise that the arrival of, a new online archive portal that offers 57,000 royalty-free clips and a whopping 7,000,000 still photos collected from U.S. government agency sources, has been met with great interest from producers within the U.S. and internationally...Read More
November 24, 2010 50 Free and Useful Websites to be Thankful For - Has a vast collection of historic images and videos.  A neat tool the site offers allows users to enter their birth date and the website displays pictures and information about the historical events which occurred on that date...Read Article
November 22, 2010 Tracing History with the Net
...Critical Past, the video archival service that hosts tens of thousands of historic video clippings, is yet another wonderful resource for retrospection...Read More
August 24, 2010 Fun Site of the Day.  August 24, 2010
Critical Past
Critical Past ( is a vast archive of historical video clips and still images. It features over 57,000 videos and 7 million pictures. Browse the clips by year and location or search for a specific event...Read More
August 23, 2010 CriticalPast – Historical Moments Come to Life
Forget about the History Channel; now you can tap into more than 57,000 videos of historical videos depicting important, influential and compelling moments in history, available for free viewing online. CriticalPast is “one of the world’s largest collections of royalty-free archival stock footage.”
Aside from the obvious educational value CriticalPast possesses, the amazing footage you can explore on this site is simply phenomenal...Read More
August 16, 2010 The Top 100 Web Sites of 2010:
Critical Past
Need to dig into the past? Try Critical Past, which offers a collection of historic images and videos. They're completely royalty-free (though you still have to pay to use them off the site). If it got captured for the news in the early part of the 20th century, there's a good chance the footage you seek is here...Read Article
August 16, 2010 Capital Buzz:
-- Former AOLer Andy Erickson and his brother Jim doubled visitors and revenue in the second month at their Reston start-up CriticalPast, which offers film producers and history buffs royalty-free downloads of 57,000 historic videos and 7 million still photos. Andy worked on various AOL offerings from 1996 to 2006. Jim worked in the D.C. and L.A. film markets, handling motion picture conversions for TV programs and movies...Read Article
August 6, 2010 CriticalPast Offers Stock Footage for History Buffs
Whether you're a history fan, working on a project for school, or you're looking for archival footage for a full documentary, CriticalPast is an excellent source for stock video of historical figures and events as early as the 1890s. The service has thousands of video clips and photos that span decades...Read More
July 7, 2010 Critique: Critical Past
A searchable stockpile of over 57,000 videos and 7 million images, recently-launched CP's essentially a YouTube for everything old and historical...Read More
June 22, 2010 blinkx Partners with CriticalPast to Offer Historic Video Clips
Over 50,000 videos from history’s most iconic moments now available on
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF.—June 22, 2010—blinkx, the world’s largest and most advanced video search engine, today announced a partnership with CriticalPast,, a global online resource for royalty-free, historic video footage...Read More
June 22, 1010 CriticalPast – 57000 vídeos y millones de fotos históricas
Con un incalculable valor académico y profesional, tiene más de 57000 vídeos mostrando diferentes momentos de nuestra historia.  Acompañados por 7 millones de fotos...Read More

June 16, 2010 CriticalPast Partners with
57,000 Clips from CriticalPast's Archival Collection Now Searchable Through
New York - June 16, 2010 -, the stock, archival and news footage search engine, announced today that, CriticalPast one of the world's largest online resources for royalty-free, historic footage and photos, has added its entire collection of more than 57,000 clips to the search platform...Read More
June 14, 2010 New venture makes historical stock footage affordable.
Indie and amateur filmmakers looking to add some historical context to their works have a new outlet.  The recently launched offers...Read More
June 9, 2010 Historical film footage of Saudi Arabia online
Critical Past has just launched one of the world’s largest online resources for royalty-free, historic film clips and photos. Available now at, the collection spans...Read More
June 3, 2010 CriticalPast Introduces One of the World’s Largest Online Archives of Historic Film Footage and Photo Images...Read More
June 3, 2010 Northern Virginia Brothers Launch
Dover, Del. --, a Dover-based startup founded by Northern Virginia brothers Andy and Jim Erickson, said on Thursday that it officially has launched its site, which features one of the largest online collections of royalty-free, archival footage and photos. The content, stored on servers in Reston, is gleaned largely from federal agencies, and available for free viewing online or download starting at $1.97. Key themes in the collection -- which dates as far back as the 1890s -- include Early Motion Pictures, World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, American Presidents, The Great Depression, Civil Rights and the Cold War. "The market is ready for a fresh approach that addresses the numerous hurdles, inconsistent pricing schemes and waiting times that professionals and consumers currently endure when trying to secure video footage and images," said Andy Erickson, who previously directed multiple products and programs at AOL, including the company's flagship AOL 9.0 online service. Jim Erickson was a partner in Stock Footage Clips where he worked as a videographer and archives researcher, and also owned and operated Erickson Archival Telecine.

CriticalPast Press Release

June 3, 2010 Introduces One of the World’s Largest Online Archives of Historic Film Footage and Photo Images....Read Full Press Release