Lucy Preston is played by Abigail Spencer.
Lucy Preston is a genius professor of history and anthropology of American political movements at Stanford University, chosen to undo the damage in time done by Garcia Flynn. She thinks of herself as a nerdy person, as she skipped her high school prom to go to a speaking and debating tournament and holds no regrets over the decision.
Lucy has a sister named Amy Preston, who is 7 years younger than her. She is erased from Lucy's timeline due to consequences from Lucy's first time travel mission.
Carolyn Preston, Lucy's mother, first appears sick with lung cancer in the "Pilot" due to smoking.
However, after Lucy, Wyatt Logan, and Rufus Carlin make significant changes in their first mission (saving the Hindenburg), Lucy comes home to discover that her mother is healthy and alive. Carolyn later reveals to Lucy that she works for Rittenhouse.
Lucy's father, Henry Wallace, is mentioned several times in the show, but never appears. Later, however, Lucy discovers that Henry wasn't her biological father. This is revealed when her sister Amy is erased from history due to Henry and Lucy's mother Carolyn never meeting in the new alternate timeline. Lucy's mother, in the alternate timeline, later reveals her biological father's name, Benjamin Cahill.
After Carol and Emma save soldier Nicholas Keynes during WWI, Keynes is revealed by Carolyn to be Lucy’s maternal great-grandfather.
Episodes - Season 1
1937 - Episode 1: "Pilot"
Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus then went to New Jersey to prevent Flynn from altering the Hindenburg's fate. He saves the Hindenburg from exploding when it arrives in the U.S. Lucy later figures out that Flynn is trying to bomb it on its way back to Europe, when it will be carrying several prominent Americans to the coronation of King George VI. They end up on board, and are able to ground the ship when it explodes, saving everybody. Lucy later encounters Flynn personally, who reveals he has a diary she's written in his possession. He also tells her to ask why she was chosen, and what Rittenhouse is. Lucy returns back to the present, and tells the team that she thinks Flynn is trying to destroy America when it was still young. Lucy then heads home, and finds her mother, Carol, is no longer sick from lung cancer and in perfect health, but her younger sister, Amy, was never born. (“Pilot”)
1865 - Episode 2: "The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln"
Lucy, Wyatt and Rufus go to 1865 Washington, D.C. to prevent Flynn from assisting John Wilkes Booth in his assassination of Abraham Lincoln and his co-conspirators in killing General Ulysses S. Grant, Secretary of State William H. Seward, and Vice President Andrew Johnson. Wyatt and Rufus both argue with Lucy about letting Lincoln die, arguing with her about keeping history the way it is. Lucy again encounters Flynn, who says that she's going to help him one day, and that he's trying to save America. He warns her not to get in his way before leaving again. After unsuccessfully getting Flynn, the team goes their separate ways. With help from Jiya, Lucy figures out why Amy was never born, and that Amy's father is not her biological father. Lucy arrives home to find that she is engaged to a man named Noah. (“The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln”)
1962 - Episode 3: "Atomic City"
The trio go to Vegas in 1962 to figure out what Flynn wants to do. They look around in the casino where Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, and Dean Martin play for President John F. Kennedy. There, Wyatt spots Flynn taking away Judith Campbell. After Wyatt fights with Flynn, Flynn gets away and the trio try to protect Judith Campbell. However, Judith escapes and helps Flynn get a nuke. Flynn gets the nuke and leaves Vegas while the trio go home, unsuccessful. (“Atomic City”)
1944 - Episode 4: "Party at Castle Varlar"
Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus go back in the Lifeboat to track down Flynn in 1944 Nazi Germany. When Lucy and Wyatt go to the bar, they meet up with Ian Fleming. Lucy and Wyatt are starstruck, but they eventually calm down and ask Ian Fleming for help. Fleming decides to help the Time Team, and they come up with a plan to get Wernher von Braun, an important scientist who influences the American Space program, away from Flynn. Lucy has an emotional breakdown, but Wyatt helps her out. Ian and Lucy go to the party and wait to get Wernher von Braun, but then Flynn gets to him before them. Eventually, the trio and Ian Fleming get Wernher von Braun, and they turn him over to the Allies. The trio once again go home without Flynn. Lucy then tells Agent Denise Christopher that she'll continue the missions on the condition that they help her get Amy back. (“Party at Castle Varlar”)
1836 - Episode 5: "The Alamo"
Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus travel back to Texas during the Alamo. They arrive days before the fight between General Santa Anna and the people from the Alamo. However, Flynn changes history by convincing the General to attack the Alamo earlier, and not allow the women and children to escape to safety. Flynn finds a way to get inside the Alamo and murders William B. Travis, preventing him from finishing his historic "Victory or Death" letter. With Travis dead, Lucy ends up writing the letter, and the three escape to safety with the women and children. They convince John William Smith to deliver the letter while Jim Bowie and Davy Crockett fight the Mexicans. The trio successfully go home, but then they are told that Wyatt is fired; Lucy and Rufus object, and convince the agents to keep Wyatt on the team. Lucy argues with her mother about her biological father, and when she returns home, Carol finally gives Lucy the name of her father. (“The Alamo”)
1972 - Episode 6: " The Watergate Tape"
Flynn jumps back to 1972 Washington D.C during the Watergate scandal. Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus follow him, but Flynn kidnaps the team. He tells the team that he has the missing Nixon tape before it was erased. However, he needs the team to do something for him. He needs them to find the "doc" President Nixon kept referring to about Rittenhouse. Flynn also reveals the existence of Lucy's journal; Wyatt and Rufus are shocked about the revelation. Flynn holds Wyatt hostage, and tells Lucy and Rufus to find the doc. Lucy and Rufus discover that the "doc" is not a document, but a person. Doc tells Lucy that she was a member of Rittenhouse, who are a dangerous group, and she's trying to run from them. Lucy discovers that Rufus has been recording the missions for Rittenhouse, and is angered by his betrayal. Lucy and Rufus turn the tables, and are able to save the Doc and Wyatt. The trio goes home safe and alive, but the team is fractured after Wyatt discovers that both Lucy and Rufus lied to him. Lucy goes and visits the home of her father, Benjamin Cahill, who is also a Rittenhouse agent. She leaves without telling him who she is. (“The Watergate Tape”)
1754 - Episode 7: "Stranded"
The trio are stuck in 1754 after Flynn sabotages the Lifeboat. Rufus tells the trio he will try to repair the Lifeboat, but he needs supplies. They get captured by the Shawnee tribe, and are sentenced to death. While captured, the three bond over regrets and wanting to fix their past mistakes. The chieftess Nonhelema spares Rufus' life, but she orders Lucy and Wyatt to be executed. Rufus convinces Nonhelema to spare their lives, and they go to the French camp to get supplies for the Lifeboat. They do this, and Rufus successfully fixes the Lifeboat. With help from Connor Mason and Jiya, they successfully come home. The trio reconciles with each other. Lucy tells Wyatt that she's afraid the journal is true, and that one day, she will be helping Flynn. However, Wyatt tells Lucy that she can choose her own future, and to not write the journal. (“Stranded”)
1969 - Episode 8: "Space Race"
Flynn travels back to 1969 Houston, Texas on the day of the Apollo 11 landing. He and Anthony Bruhl insert a virus in the NASA computer system, disabling the Mission Control communication with Apollo 11 and potentially ruining the mission. Rufus and Lucy are able to fix the system with the help of NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, but Flynn and Anthony escape. When Lucy finds out that Flynn was able to save his half-brother, Gabriel, from dying, she is frustrated over not being able to save Amy. Agent Christopher promises to keep their deal, after they catch Flynn (“Space Race”)
1934 - Episode 9: "Last Ride of Bonnie and Clyde"
Flynn is off again to 1934, and he is searching for a special Rittenhouse key. Lucy has dinner with Noah, which doesn't go well. Wyatt tells her to let Noah go later, but Lucy wonders if she is meant to be with him, although she does not love him. They chase Flynn to 1934 Arkansas, and Lucy and Wyatt go inside a bank just before bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde show up. Lucy sees that Bonnie has the key they need, so she and Wyatt pretend they are a couple. Bonnie and Clyde open their home to them, and they find out that Clyde gave the key to Bonnie after stealing it from Henry Ford. Wyatt tells his own engagement story, and kisses Lucy to keep up the act, but the kiss leaves both of them dazed. Waiting for a moment to steal the key, Lucy and Wyatt talk for a bit about love and fate. They try to get the key, but they are unsuccessful. When Flynn and the police officers arrive at the cabin, Bonnie and Clyde are killed, and Flynn manages to get the key. The trio goes home; Wyatt awkwardly apologizes to Lucy for kissing her, but Lucy says they are on good terms. (“Last Ride of Bonnie & Clyde”)
1780 - Episode 10: "The Capture of Benedict Arnold"
Lucy has dinner with Agent Christopher and her wife, Michelle. Agent Christopher later gives Lucy a flash drive of her family photos to keep in the Lifeboat, in case her family disappears like Amy did. The Time Team goes back to 1780, where General Washington takes them in custody; there, they meet Flynn, acting as a Prussian spy. Flynn asks for their help to capture Benedict Arnold, a founding member of Rittenhouse. In exchange, Flynn promises to give back the Mothership. The team complies, and they do capture Benedict Arnold, who reveals that Rittenhouse was started by one man, David Rittenhouse. The team has Arnold take them to Rittenhouse's place. However, Rittenhouse turns the table and captures the team. He gets the modern gun from Wyatt, and uses it to kill Benedict Arnold. He almost kills Flynn and Wyatt, until Rufus breaks in and they get the upper hand. Flynn shoots Rittenhouse himself, but then he runs off to kill David's young son, John. Lucy tries to stop him from killing the boy, and John runs away. Furious, Flynn kidnaps Lucy and takes her in the Mothership. Rufus and Wyatt hear her screams, but they are too late to save Lucy. (“The Capture of Benedict Arnold”)
1893 - Episode 11: "The World's Columbian Exposition"
Flynn goes back and tries to kill John, but fails, and Lucy is unable to find any other record of him. Flynn takes Lucy, and goes back to 1893 during the Chicago World's Fair. There, Flynn reveals his plan to kill Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and J.P. Morgan, all members of Rittenhouse. Lucy refuses to help him, until Flynn reveals that he had Rufus and Wyatt, who followed them in the Lifeboat, trapped the World's Fair Hotel with serial killer H. H. Holmes. Lucy gets the help of Harry Houdini, who manages to stop Flynn's plan and helps Lucy rescue Rufus and Wyatt. While trying to find Holmes, Lucy ends up getting kidnapped by the serial killer. However, she stalls long enough for Wyatt and Rufus to find her, and kill Holmes. Reunited, the trio goes home. (“The World's Columbian Exposition”)
1882 - Episode 12: "The Murder of Jesse James"
Lucy has a dream about Amy that troubles her. The team then chases Flynn to 1882 Oklahoma, where they find out Flynn saved Jesse James from being killed in exchange for his help. To go after him, Lucy gets the help of U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves and his friend, Grant Johnson, to find Flynn and Jesse. On the way, Lucy reveals how she forgot about her sister's birthday the day before, and she's lost faith in the mission to stop Flynn. The team end up at a cabin, where they discover that former time travel pilot Emma Whitmore is alive, and Flynn has escaped with her. They are ambushed by Jesse, and Grant is killed. Lucy kills Jesse, even though Reeves says not to. (“The Murder of Jesse James”)
1983 - Episode 13: "Karma Chameleon"
Wyatt comes to Lucy's place, and reveals he and Rufus are stealing the Lifeboat to save his wife, Jessica, by preventing her killer from being born. Lucy decides to come along, but Wyatt persuades her to stay to keep her deal to get Amy back. While running interference with Agent Christopher, Lucy gets a call and meets up with Anthony to discuss how to get rid of Rittenhouse for good. He tells her he is going to destroy the Mothership so Rittenhouse won't get it, and asks Lucy to do the same to the Lifeboat. After their meeting, Agent Christopher shows a picture of a Rittenhouse agent talking with Mason, and Lucy recognizes him as her father. When Rufus and Wyatt come back, Wyatt's wife is still dead, and Wyatt is arrested. Lucy goes to her father's house, and confronts him about Rittenhouse. Cahill informs Lucy that she is a part of Rittenhouse, too, since it includes family. (“Karma Chameleon”)
1927 - Episode 14: "The Lost Generation"
Lucy and Rufus chase Flynn to 1927 Paris, accompanied by Master Sgt. David Baumgardner, since Wyatt is incarcerated. They discover that Flynn is after Charles Lindbergh. The team gets into a shootout with Emma and Flynn's henchman, Karl. Dave gets shot and dies from the gunshot wound. Without Dave to protect them, Rufus and Lucy reluctantly team up with Ernest Hemingway, who acts as a temporary soldier. They manage to spare Lindbergh's life, but Flynn gains intelligence about Rittenhouse from the interaction. Rufus and Lucy return, and find other government agents in charge of the Lifeboat now, headed by Agent Jake Neville. Lucy returns home, where Carol gives her a blank journal - same as the one Flynn has. She and Rufus later meet Agent Christopher and Wyatt, who escaped with Agent Christopher's help. Christopher informs them that Rittenhouse is controlling the Lifeboat, and the team resolves to find a way to to stop them. (“The Lost Generation”)
1931 - Episode 15: "Public Enemy No.1"
Neville orders to Lucy and Rufus to go to 1962 Houston, and eliminate Flynn's mother with Master Sgt. Caleb Sullivan, preventing Flynn from being born. However, Rufus and Lucy drug Sullivan, and steal the Lifeboat, meeting Agent Christopher and Wyatt. The team then decides to help Lucy get her sister back, but then Flynn jumps to 1931 Chicago, and the team pursues him. When Flynn helps Al Capone evade going to prison, they team up with Eliot Ness to bring Capone to justice. However, Ness gets shot down by Flynn's men. The team then tracks down Richard Hart, Capone's brother and Prohibition agent, and Lucy convinces him to help arrest Capone. He helps them, but Al Capone shoots Rufus and in turn, Richard shoots Al Capone dead. Rufus is badly injured, and the team takes him to the Lifeboat to bring him back home. Just before they jump, Rufus loses consciousness, and Lucy and Wyatt try to revive him. (“Public Enemy No. 1”)
1954 - Episode 16: "The Red Scare"
Rufus manages to get them back to the present, and Lucy calls Noah to treat Rufus. After he does, Lucy ends her engagement with him. Lucy, Wyatt, Rufus, and Jiya escape in the Lifeboat, and travel to 1954 to pursue Flynn. Lucy and Wyatt are accused of being Russian spies by Flynn. Flynn finds Lucy, and tells her that he is going to destroy all of Rittenhouse in a summit, including her grandfather, Ethan Cahill. Lucy and Wyatt escape, and track down Ethan to take them to the Rittenhouse summit. At the summit, Lucy convinces Flynn to stop since she found another way to get rid of Rittenhouse. Lucy gets Ethan to gather information about Rittenhouse. The team uses the info Ethan gathered to arrest the Rittenhouse members in the present. Lucy gives Flynn the info on who killed his family, but he gets arrested by Agent Christopher's team, to Lucy's dismay. Later, Agent Christopher informs Lucy that she now has permission to get her sister back. Lucy says goodbye to Wyatt, but he decides to stay and help Lucy get Amy back. Lucy leaves to talk with her mother, informing her of her plan to get Amy back; but then Lucy discovers, to her horror, that Carol is also a member of Rittenhouse, and she's not going to let Lucy get Amy back. Carol reveals that Rittenhouse now has control of the Mothership thanks to Emma, actually a Rittenhouse agent, and they're putting their plan to change history into motion. (“The Red Scare”)
Episodes - Season 2
1918 - Episode 1: "War to End All Wars"
1955 - Episode 2: "The Darlington 500"
1941 - Episode 3: "Hollywoodland"
Assigned to work together, Lucy and Wyatt often clashed initially because of their respective lines of work and opposing views. (“Pilot”) The more time they spent together, though, the more they bonded. (“Atomic City”) They both came to respect each other's views, and Lucy was happy to have Wyatt by her side during the missions. (“The Alamo”) Lucy's feelings for Wyatt started to develop, but she didn't act on them because of his grief over losing his wife, Jessica. She gave him space and still supported him the only way she could. (“Karma Chameleon”) Lucy eventually admitted her feelings to him, saying he's the reason she keeps going. (“Hollywoodland”) When Jessica came back, Lucy stepped aside to let Wyatt be happy, and also convinced Jessica to give Wyatt a second chance out of love for Wyatt. (“The Kennedy Curse”) She was hurt by losing him, though, and tried to keep her distance, which Wyatt didn't take well. (“The King of the Delta Blues”) Lucy, though, finally stood her ground and told Wyatt he broke her heart, but she needs to accept it for his sake, and so does he. (“Mrs. Sherlock Holmes”) Wyatt eventually tells Lucy that he loves her, but she doesn't say anything back. (“Chinatown”)
Flynn and Lucy started as enemies, but after a long time and a lot of trouble by Rittenhouse, they appear to be good friends for the time being.
After coming home from Lucy's second mission, Lucy discovers she is engaged to a doctor named Noah. While she doesn't know him, she comes across photo albums of the two's time together and he says they have been dating for several years. She continues to be engaged to him, even trying to get to know him, until the first season finale when Lucy finally breaks off their engagement. (“Last Ride of Bonnie & Clyde”)
- Lucy is claustrophobic due to a near fatal car accident she was in during college. She landed in a river and was stuck in the car as water began to fill it, leaving her terrified, until a passerby found and rescued her. She hasn't been able to handle being in small or confined spaces ever since.
- She wanted to join a band when she was younger before deciding to become a historian to honor her mother. During one of her missions with the team, she is forced to sing in front of a crowd to maintain her cover. It is then revealed that she is a talented singer.
- She can speak some French.
- Her parents belong to Rittenhouse.
- Brave, but sometimes naive.
- She has written a book that includes information on the moments of John Wilkes Booth on the day he assassinated President Abraham Lincoln. She named Abraham Lincoln to be her favorite historical figure and used to memorize and recite his speeches as a child just for fun.