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The Story Behind tells the extraordinary history of the ordinary. Everyday objects are more closely examined, from their ancient beginnings through the present—all within 5-10 minutes.

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Oct 12, 2017

From crime dramas to magic acts to "50 Shades of Grey," today’s topic is known around the world, although there are restrictions in place depending on the country about how a person is displayed with them. France, for example, prohibits the media from showing pictures of people with them until they’ve been convicted. Those being restrained with the device in Hong Kong are offered head coverings for anonymity. And in Japan, a person’s hands may be blurred in photographs if they’re wearing them.

Normally when I have to make a disclaimer for episodes, they involve content that may not be suitable for all ages. But this episode’s disclaimer is a bit different. So here it goes: The content you’re about to hear is intended for educational purposes. The Story Behind does not endorse any use of this information to evade law enforcement or commit illegal acts.

Are you intrigued yet?

I’m your host, Emily Prokop, and this is The Story Behind Handcuffs.

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This episode was brought to you by The Story Behind Executive Producers who support the show through the Patreon Page at Stargate Pioneer from, Mat from the One Word, Go! Show, Sam Dunn, Diane and Denise from History Goes Bump, Scott Smith from Recovering from Religion, Dan Brenic from Netflix N’ Swill, Jarrod Dunham from, Heather Welch from Sunshine and PowerCuts, and Jason Bryant from Mat Talk Online, Gerald and Andy from Two Peas on a Podcast, Bandrew Scott from The Bandrew Says Podcast and Podcastage YouTube Channel, Adam from Everyone Has a Podcast. and newest executive producers, Barry G. and Nick and Justin from Epic Film Guys.

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Music for Makers


The History Of Handcuffs - United Locksmith

Brief History of Handcuffs - Police Supply Blog

DOCUMENTARY: Houdini: Unlocking the Mysteries

Handcuff Escapes - Mallusionist

Cop = Constable on Patrol? - Snopes

Baltimore Police Handcuffs Restraints - Baltimore City Police History

How to Escape from Handcuffs - WikiHow