It shouldn't be. I have just clicked on the History button on the toolbar then "Search" button in the left hand history pane, it only brings up the last few pages since I cleared the file.
Try again. tools/internet options, clear history/Delete Files. Now close down the browser [If you have more than one browser window open, close all] then re-open your browser, click on the history button on the toolbar and the left hand pane should be empty.
If you now click on search button in that pane it will only show the last page you opened, or should do.
I'm on Broadband so closing down the browser will clear the history files without me logging off-line. If your on dial-up you may need to disconnect from your ISP, reboot the PC and see if that does it. It should do. Please let me know how you get on.