The further backward you can look, the further forward you can see.
This line sums up the appeal of history. Some of my favorite books are Sapiens by Yuval Harari, Homo Deus by Yuval Harari and Antifragile by Nassim Taleb (not necessarily history but full of interesting principles about us humans).
The Sovereign Individual was also quite compelling in parts.
Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond was very useful too, though I could not finish it due to time constraints.
A lot of good VCs are fans of the subject, it enables them to see the world at a grand scale. It enables understanding at a deeply satisfying level, and of course empowers you to make better guesses about the future.