Battle of Troy: c. 1300 BC
For centuries, scholars have debated whether the story of the 'Trojan Horse" has historical foundation. Based on archaeological evidence, it is now believed that Troy, the city state which was at war with Athens and Sparta, was an actual city in western Turkey, near the present day city of Hisarlik. In this drone video by jesus_tr, you'll get a look at the site from the second millennium BC, which was famously referenced in two of the greatest works of western literature: Virgil's Aenid and Plato's The Odyssey.
Sack of Nineveh: 612 BC
Mosul is a war torn city of Iraq on the Tigris River. Professional award-winning drone cinematographers Kelly’s Heroes traveled to document Mosul for a Belgian television series. Unfortunately, war is not new to this area: Mosul lies on the ruins of the great Assyrian capital of Nineveh, once the world's largest city. Its sacking in 612 BC killed thousands and was one of the most consequential events of ancient history. This video is a Finalist in the Drones for Good category in the second annual DVA's.
First Persian Invasion of Greece: 492 BC
In this video, contributor Icarus Aerial Filming gives us a spectacular bird's eye view of the area around Mt. Athos in northern Greece. In addition to being home to some of the most important Eastern Orthodox monasteries, the fabled mountain (called Holy Mountain) was the site of one of the great bits of luck enjoyed by the Greeks in the Antiquity - the foundering of a Persian fleet off the coast of Athos in 492 BC forestalled an imminent Persian naval invasion of the Greek mainland.
Seige of Masada: 73-74 AD
Masada is an ancient fortification built atop a plateau in the Judean Desert of southern Israel, overlooking the Dead Sea. During the First Jewish War of the first century AD, Masada was the site of a famous seige by Roman troops following which the Jewish defenders committed mass suicide en masse rather than surrender. Contributor Nelly Volkovich used a drone to create an amazing aerial video of this hallowed mountaintop, which is a UNESCO World Heritage cultural site.
Destruction of Pompeii: 79 AD
Mt. Vesuvius (Vesuvio) in southern Italy is amongst the world's most important volcanoes from a historical perspective. More or less dormant since the 1940's, it is credited with the most famous volcanic event in history. In 79 AD, a major eruption more or less wiped out four major Roman towns, the most notable of which was Pompeii. Contributor feola.mike used a DJI drone to create this beautiful video of the great mountain, still considered one of the more dangerous volcanoes on earth.
Prince Henry's African Voyage: 1415
Contributor and drone pilot Francisco Rodriguez created this beautiful aerial video of the great Portuguese city of Porto. Once a Roman outpost, this city on the Douro River is steeped in history: it was the shipbuilders of Porto who helped launch Europe on its great Age of Exploration. Famously, Porto Harbor was the launching point for Prince Henry the Navigator's exploratory trip to Africa in 1415, a voyage which was at least as consequential as that of Chrisopher Columbus later in the century.
Fall of Constantinople: 1453
Rumeli Fortress sits on the European side of the Straits of Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey. Rumeli played a critical role in the seige of the city then known as Constantinople by forces under Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II, who overwhelmed it after a 53 day seige in 1453. The sack of what was then the world's largest city marked the end of the Byzantine Empire (the formal successor to the Roman Empire) and is considered one of the most important historical events of the Middle Ages.
Seige of Harlech: 1468
Contributor AVEA - Alta Vistic Epic Aerial created this marvelous drone video of a famous fortress in northern Wales. Harlech Castle is situated within Snowdonia National Park in Gwynned County. It was built by King Edward I during his conquest of Wales in the late 13th century. During the War of the Roses in the 15th century, Harlech was the site of a famous seige by Yorkist forces which ended in a Lancastrian surrender in 1468. It's known as the longest seige in British history.
First Voyage of Columbus: 1492
Contributor and drone pilot Eminorcks created this spectacular aerial video of one of the great fortresses of Europe. The Alhambra of Granada lies in the province of the same name, one of the eight which make up the Andalusia region of Southern Spain. It is the site of one of the more notable historical events of the second millennium AD: in 1492, Spain's King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella gave the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus the go-ahead for his first great voyage.
Mayflower Landing: 1620
The ship Mayflower carrying the Pilgrims who settled the USA's New England made landfall at the very tip of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in 1620. The town they founded there was named Provincetown, and the Mayflower Compact they signed here is one of the most important documents in the American historical record. The monument to commemorate these events is called Pilgrim Monument, which was completed in 1910. Check out from above in this drone video from PO3SMITH.
Seige of Oostende: 1601-04
Oostende, Belgium is the largest city on the Belgian coast. Founded in the 13th century, this city in West Flanders has played an important role in numerous military conflicts by virtue of being on the North Sea. Famously, the city played a key role in the 80 Years War, by which the Netherlands (which included modern day Belgium at the time) gained independence from Spain. The Seige of Oostende lasted from 1601-04, during which about 80,000 on both sides were killed or wounded.
Seige of Heidelberg: 1622
Contributor Frankiez used his DJI Mavic Pro Drone to create this lovely aerial view of the medieval city of Heidelberg, in the Baden-Wurtemberg state of southwestern Germany. You'll get a marvelous bird's eye view of Heidelberg Castle, built in the 13th century and one of the most famous castles in Europe. In 1622, Heidelberg was the site of an important battle during the early part of the Thirty Years War, in which the Spanish Imperial Army led by the Count of Tilly beseiged and overcame the city.
Battle of Scheveningen: 1653
Scheveningen is one of the districts that make up the Hague, the Dutch capital and the third largest city in the Netherlands. It's home to some of the finest beaches and seaside resorts in the Benelux region. Now known for its quaint beaches, the area was the site of one of the most famous battles of the First Anglo-Dutch War of the mid-17th century. At the Battle of Scheveningen in 1653, onlookers stood on these beaches and watched the English Navy inflict a heavy defeat on Dutch naval forces.
Lisbon Earthquake: 1755
Contributor Martigen created this marvelous drone video of the Portuguese capital city Lisbon. It opens with a magnificent shot of Praça do Comércio on the Tagus River. The square was built on the ruins of the Ribeira Palace, the great Portuguese royal palace. The palace along with much of Lisbon was destroyed in one of history's greatest natural disasters: the 1755 earthquake, which is estimated to have registered up to 9.0 on the Richter Scale, devastated the city and killed up to 100,000 people.
Battle of Trafalgar: 1805
Contributor MrMaikelMaik brings us this beautiful aerial view of the area around Los Caños de Meca, in southern Spain. The town lies just to the east of Cape Trafalgar, in the Andalusian province of Cádiz. The video also captures the well known Cape Gibraltar Lighthouse. The waters here were the site of one of the world's most famous naval battles: in 1805, a British fleet under Admiral Lord Nelson defeated a French/Spanish fleet and dealt a heavy blow to Napoloeon's drive to control the seas.
Battle of Leipzig (Nations): 1813
Contributor and drone pilot _tewe_ created this beautiful aerial tour of Leipzig, Germany. Leipzig is the largest city in the state of Saxony in eastern Germany. In 1813, the city was the site of one of the pivotal battles of the Napoleonic Wars. In the Battle of Leipzig (sometimes called the Battle of Nations), coalition forces defeated those of Napoleon and forever squashed his hopes of controlling Europe. In terms of the forces involved, it was the largest battle in European history up to World War I.
Donner Party Expedition: 1846-7
A2Films created this beautiful drone video of Donner Lake in Northern California. The lake is situated on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, just a few minutes drive northwest of Lake Tahoe. The lake was the setting for one of the most horrific American pioneer stories: the Donner Party's ill-fated expedition to California. They reached what is now Donner Pass in late 1846 but were trapped for four months with virtually no food; the half that survived did so by eating the dead.
First Shots of US Civil War: 1861
Charleston is port city in the Southeastern USA state of South Carolina. While not the largest city in the state, it is the most well known by virtue of its past. Famously, the guns at Charleston's Fort Sumter fired the first shots of the US Civil War in 1861, setting off the most traumatic chapter of US history. More recently, the city was devastated by Hurricane Hugo in 1989. This aerial tour of Charleston is courtesy of contributor Grec's Whirlybird and his DJI Mavic Pro drone.
San Francisco Earthquake: 1906
InspireFPV does just that with this amazing FPV video from a famous rock in the Pacific Ocean just south of San Francisco. Mussel Rock is a "family" consisting of one large rock and several small ones. It sits just off the coast of Daly City, the "suburb" situated just south of San Francisco. The significance of this spot is that it was believed to be the very epicenter of the great 1906 Earthquake which nearly leveled San Francisco and was by some measures the worst natural disaster in American history.
Killing of Austrian Archduke: 1914
Contributor Emirdzanan created this beautiful video of modern Sarajevo. Now the capital of Bosnia Herzegovina, Sarajevo was the site of one of history's most monumental events. In June, 1914, the Archduke of Austria Hungary and his wife were visiting the city when they were assassinated by a Serbian terrorist. Austria Hungary, believing that the Serbian government was complicit in the killing, set a chain of events in motion which ended with the outbreak of the conflict now known as World War I.
Rape of Belgium: 1914
Contributor Bartreding used a DJI Mavic Air drone to create this aerial tour of Leuven (Louvain), Belgium. It's the capital of the province of Flemish Brabant in the middle of the country. This medieval town is home to KU Leuven, the oldest university in the Low Countries. Leuven was the site of an infamous atrocity at the outset of World War I, when invading German soldiers pillaged the town, killing hundreds and burning over 230,000 volumes at the university's library. The incident shocked world opinion.
Battle of Gallipoli: 1915
Top contributor jesus_tr created this moving aerial video to the monuments commemorating the World War I Battle of Gallipoli. The battle was joined in March, 1915 with an Allied naval bombardment of the Dardanelles Strait followed by landings on the Gallipoli Peninsula, in an attempt to knock Turkey out of the war. The invading forces were not able to take the commanding heights above the beaches, where Turkish forces under future leader Kemal Ataturk held fast over months of attacks.
Sinking of the RMS Lusitania: 1915
Contributor Mark's Mavic 2 used a DJI MP2 to create this stunning video of the lighthouse at the Old Head of Kinsale in County Cork, Ireland. The spot is famous for being the nearest land point to the sinking of the RMS Lusitania by a German U-Boat during World War I. On May 7, 1915, the Cunard-operated ship was torpedoed about 19 km (11 mi.) from here, killing almost 1,200 people. The ensuing worldwide outrage caused Germany to temporarily suspend unrestricted submarine warfare.
Flight of the L'Oiseau Blanc: 1927
AVEA - Alta Epic Aerials created this stunning drone video of one of a site which played a key part in one of France's greatest mysteries. Étretat is a small community on Normandy's Atlantic Coast. In May, 1927, a plane called the White Bird took off from Étretat bound for New York. The plane, piloted by two famous French World War I aces, disappeared without a trace and has never been found. They had been seeking the Orteig prize, which was awarded to the USA's Charles Lindbergh weeks later.
Battle of Shanghai: 1937
German contributor aeronauten-tv.de created this beautiful nighttime drone video of the most well known view in Shanghai China: looking eastward from the Bund area over to the Pudong district on the eastern side of the Huangpu River. This area was the site of one of the most intense (and poorly remembered) battle scenes of the 20th century: the Battle of Shanghai of 1937, in which Japanese and Chinese troops squared off on opposite sides of the river in the opening stages of what became World War II.
Battle of the Ebro: 1938
Contributor Sobrevolando created this amazing drone video of a recreation of a famous event in the Spanish Civil War. During that conflict in the late 1930's, the Ebro River in Aragon and Catalonia was the site of a bloody battle between the warring sides. On November 16, 1938, the Republican forces who had been on the defensive gave way and were forced back across the river by the Nationalist advance. This ended the six month Battle of the Ebro, considered the war's decisive campaign.
Bataan Death March: 1942
Sisiman is a small coastal village at the tip of the Bataan Peninsula on the island of Luzon in the Phillipines, just across Manila Bay from the great capital city. Contributor Carlos Caacbay's drone video captures this magnificent looking place, whose beauty hides a grim past: this was the starting point for the Bataan Death March in World War II, in which thousands of US and allied POW's died during early 1942 while being force-marched through the jungle by their Japanese captors.
Battle of Stalingrad: 1942-43
The southern Russian city of Volgograd was once known as Stalingrad. In the late 1942 and early 1943, it was the site of a terrible battle between Nazi Germany and the Red Army which marked the turning point of World War II. The most prominent site in the city is the statue of Mother Russia, erected to commemorate the hundreds of thousands of Red Army soldiers and civilians who died there. This drone video captures the immensity of the statue and the losses that led to its construction.
D-Day Invasion of France: 1944
Marc Olde Kalter created this amazing bird's eye view of one of the most important points in the initial battle for Normandy, France which commenced on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Pointe Du Hoc has commanding views of what became Omaha and Utah Beaches, the two landing zones assigned to the USA's forces. On Day 1 of the invasion, US Army Rangers captured Point Du Hoc and fought off German counter-attacks, securing the beaches from flanking fire which could have derailed the entire operation.
Massacre of Oradour sur Glane: 1944
Contributor FreD ...///... created this haunting aerial video of Oradour-sur-Glane, a small French village in central France that was the scene of one of the worst World War II atrocities in Western Europe. In June, 1944, troops of the Waffen-SS came through here to reinforce the German positions in Normandy following the Allied D-Day landing. They massacred 642 residents of the town, mostly women and children. While the village was rebuilt nearby, the original village was preserved in memorial.
Warsaw Uprising: 1944
The Warsaw Uprising in the summer of 1944 was a seminal event in World War II as well as for the Polish nation. Although Germany had no chance of winning the war by this point, troops under control of the German SS brutally suppressed an uprising by the people of Warsaw, mercilessly killing hundreds of thousands of civilians and razing the city. In this video, contributor Mackox flew a drone over the celebration marking the 74th anniversary of this important historical event.
Yalta Conference: 1945
In this video you'll get a bird's eye view of Yalta, a city on the Black Sea coastline of the Crimean Peninsula. The Crimea became part of the Ukraine following the dissolution of the USSR in the 1990's, but recently voted to rejoin Russia. Yalta was the site of a famous meeting during the closing months of World War II, when Allied leaders Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Joseph Stalin met to begin planning the post-war world order. It was the second and last meeting of the so-called Big Three.
Dresden Firebombing: 1945
Take in this aerial view of the Dresden Cathedral, compliments of DW-Travel. It's one of the most beautiful churches in Europe as well as one of the most powerful symbols of the 20th destruction visited by and upon Germany. In February, 1945, near the end of World War II, Dresden was nearly destroyed in a still-controversial Allied firebombing attack. The bombing, immortalized in Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five (1969), inflicted significant damage to the cathedral and killed at least 25,000 civilians.
MacArthur's Amphibious Landing: 1950
New contributor FLYKOREA created this beautiful drone video of Incheon, South Korea. It sits in the northwestern part of the country and is considered part of Greater Seoul but is a substantial city in its own right - the third largest after Seoul and Busan. The city was the location of one of the pivotal battles of the Korean War: in September, 1950, a UN force under the command of USA General Douglas MacArthur made an amphibious landing here, dealing a major setback to the North Korean forces.
Vajont Dam Break: 1963
Contributor Daniele Bolgia created this memorable drone video of a famous but never-used dam in northern Italy. Vajont Dam was constructed in the 1950's as a means to harness the Vajont River in the Veneto region. In October, 1963, as its reservoir was being filled, a massive landslide into the lake caused a giant wave of water to come pouring over its wall, the tallest in the world at the time. The resulting "tsunami" killed almost 2,000 people, making it one of history's worst dam accidents.
Assassination of John F. Kennedy: 1963
In this episode of Droning America, hostess Angie Avestruz heads to the Big D - Dallas, Texas. She teams up with local TV sports news personality Kaime Stroot to show us the sights and sounds of the great city in northern Texas - by drone. In addition to the Reunion Tower, the M Line Trolley, and the Deep Elum District, you'll get a bird's eye view of one of the most important spots in American history - Dealey Plaza, where President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in November, 1963.
America's First Mass Shooting: 1966
Contributor Patrick_Nye used a drone to create this bird's eye tour of the University of Texas at Austin, the main campus of the UT system and one of the largest in the world. The campus is visually dominated by its nearly 100 meter (about 300 ft.) Main Building. Known as The Tower, it was the site of one of the earliest instances of a mass shooting in the USA: in 1966, an ex-marine sniper perched on the observation deck shot 16 bystanders to death and injured dozens more before being killed by police.
The Chernobyl Disaster: 1986
Check out this haunting but fascinating drone video from the scene of one of history's greatest industrial accidents, compliments of David.Haring. The northern Ukrainian city of Pripyat was built in the 1970's in connection with the construction of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. When the plant's #4 reactor core exploded on April 26, 1986, the city's 50,000 inhabitants were evacuated. The disaster is credited with thousands of cancer deaths and contributed to the downfall of the USSR in 1991.
Oklahoma City Truck Bombing: 1995
In this video, contributor and drone pilot raphael.elijah gives us a bird's eye view of Oklahoma City, the capital and largest city of the Sooner State. It's located in the middle of the state, in the heart of the Great Plains region of the USA. This city was the site of one of the most infamous acts of terror in US history: on April 19, 1995, a truck bomb exploded in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, killing 168 people and causing widespread devestation in the central district of the city.