Historical events from 1 January 1860 to 31 December 1899
(-9999) = Day count to end of World War Two in Europe (day zero = Tuesday)
30/12/1899, Saturday (-16,565) (1) A British missionary was murdered in China, close to Tsinan. As a result the British consul in Shanghai ordered that three Chinese should be beheaded, also one to be strangled, another to serve 10 years in prison, and another to be banished; furthermore, three village elders were to be flogged. This incident illustrates the weakness of the Chinese State at the time against British colonialism.
(2) In Britain the school leaving age was raised from eleven to twelve; in 1893 it had been raised from ten to eleven.
16/12/1899. Saturday (-16,579) At the end of a bad week for the British in South Africa, 2,000 men and 12 heavy guns had been lost in battles with the Boers.
15/12/1899. Friday (-16,580) The Boers defeated the British, under Sir Redvers Buller, at the Battle of Colenso.
11/12/1899. Monday (-16,584) The Boers under Piet Cronje defeated the British at Magersfontein.
5/12/1899, Tuesday (-16,590) Sir Henry Tate, of Tate and Lyle fame, founder of the Tate gallery, died aged 80.
2/12/1899. Saturday (-16,593) In Washington, the USA, Britain, and Germany signed a treaty dividing the Samoan Islands between the USA and Germany.
24/11/1899. Friday (-16,601) US forces finally captured Luzon in the Philippines after nine months of jungle warfare. The US was awarded the Philippines in 1898 but found it hard to subdue the territory. Insurrectionist leader Emilio Aguinaldo wanted independence and declared the Malolos Republic in 1898. Aguinaldo continued a guerrilla war from the mountains.
15/11/1899. Wednesday (-16,610) Sir Winston Churchill was captured by the Boers whilst working as a reporter for the Morning Post. He was on board an armoured train derailed in an ambush, and had persuaded the engine driver to take the remains of the train back with the wounded, and was captured by a Boer horseman with a rifle; Churchill had lost his pistol helping clear the railway line. He escaped a few weeks later.
2/11/1899. Thursday (-16,623) The Boers under Piet Joubert laid siege to Ladysmith, an important railway junction in Natal. See 28/2/1900.
31/10/1899, Tuesday (-16,625)
20/10/1899, Friday (-16,636) Battle at Talana Hill, near Dundee, Natal, in the Boer War.
18/10/1898, Wednesday (-16,638) The USA took formal possession of Puerto Rico from Spain.
17/10/1899. Tuesday (-16,639) British troops defeated the Boers at Glencoe.
16/10/1898, Monday (-16,640)
15/10/1899. Sunday (-16,641) The Boers, who surrounded Mafeking on 12/10/1899, laid siege to Kimberley. The siege of Kimberley was lifted by the British on 16/2/1900.
14/10/1899. Saturday (-16,642) Winston Churchill left for South Africa to report for The Morning Post.
13/10/1899, Friday (-16,643)
12/10/1899, Thursday (-16,644) The Boers began the siege of Mafeking. Baden Powell defended the town until it wads relieved by Colonel Plumer 217 days later.
11/10/1899. Wednesday (-16,645) The Boer War began. (See 31/5/1902). It was between the British Empire and the Republics of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State. President Kruger of the Orange Free State had sent a telegram to Britain on 9/11/1899 demanding that Britain stop sending troops and arms to South Africa. Troubles had begun in the 1890s with the discovery of gold and diamonds in the Transvaal and this prompted many prospectors to arrive in the area. The Boers called them Uitlanders and President Kruger of the Transvaal taxed them heavily and refused them the vote. He feared that if they had the vote, Cecil Rhodes, Premier of Cape Province, who had considerable mining interests, would gain control of the Transvaal. Kaiser William of Germany expressed support for the Boers in the ‘Kruger Telegram’ of 1896; Britain’s imperial ambitions were making her unpopular abroad at this time.
The Boers had 50,000 men against the British with 15,000 regulars in South Africa and another 10,000 due from India. The Boers had better knowledge of the terrain, and their horsemen war more mobile then the ponderous British forces, whose fighting was based on Crimean tactics. However the Boers were to waste their forces in besieging the British in strategically unimportant towns such as Ladysmith, instead of sending the majority of their forces out in to South Africa and depriving the British of naval supplies by capturing the ports.
9/10/1899. Monday (-16,647) The first petrol driven motor bus began operating in London.
29/9/1899, Friday (-16,657) Billy Butlin, holiday camp owner, was born in South Africa.
19/9/1899. Tuesday (-16,667) France finally granted a pardon to Alfred Dreyfus in an attempt to end the controversy over anti-Semitic allegations that threatened the political stability of France. Dreyfus insisted on a total clearing of his name.
6/9/1899. Wednesday (-16,680) The US Secretary of State, John Hay, embarked on an ‘open door’ policy towards China. He also urged the European powers, and Japan, to respect China’s territorial integrity and pursue a policy of free trade with China.
16/8/1899. Wednesday (-16,701) Death of the German chemist Robert Wilhelm Bunsen, inventor of the Bunsen burner.
13/8/1899. Sunday (-16,704) Birth of film director Alfred Hitchcock. He was born in Leytonstone, London, the son of a greengrocer.
7/8/1899. Monday (-16,710) The guilt of Captain Alfred Dreyfus, condemned and deported for treason in 1894, was confirmed by a court-martial at Rennes.
1/8/1899, Tuesday (-16,716) The Rosebush to Fishguard & Goodwick railway opened.
29/7/1899. Saturday (-16,719) At The Hague, a conference of 26 countries established a permanent international court of arbitration.
18/7/1899, Tuesday (-16,730)
5/7/1899, Wednesday (-16,743) Jean Cocteau, film director, poet, artist, novelist, was born in Maisons-Lafitte, France.
1/7/1899, Saturday (-16,747) The first juvenile court sat, at Cork County Court, Chicago.
20/6/1889, Tuesday (-16,758) The Peloritana rail tunnel, Italy, 6.5 km long, opened
3/6/1899. Saturday (-16,775) Johann Strauss the Younger, Austrian composer, violinist, and conductor, who wrote The Blue Danube waltz, died in Vienna.
2/6/1899, Friday (-16,776) Lotte Reiniger, film animator, was born.
17/5/1899. Wednesday (-16,792) Queen Victoria laid the foundation stone of the Victoria and Albert Museum.
9/5/1899, Tuesday (-16,800)
27/3/1899, Monday (-16,843) The Wadebridge to Padstow railway opened.
17/3/1899, Friday (-16,853) A merchant ship ran aground in the English Channel and sent the first radio distress call.
16/3/1899, Thursday (-16,854) The London erotic illustrator Aubrey Beardsley died aged 26.
15/3/1899, Wednesday (-16,855) The Great Central London Main Line Railway opened, running south from Annesley (Nottingham) to Marylebone. Marylebone Railway Station, London, was opened by the President of the Board of Trade. This was the last main line railway, the Great Central Railway(GCR), to be built into London until the HS1 Channel Tunnel link opened. The GCR had originally been the Manchester Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway, but changed its name in 1897 represent its new London Line. The GCR suffered from its London route passing through the sparsely populated areas of Buckinghamshire, unlike other routes which served large towns such as Luton and Peterborough. Meanwhile the Metropolitan Railway competed with the GCR for commuter traffic from Amersham and Harrow. The GCR route was seen as largely duplicating the more successful Midlands Railway line into St Pancras.
The 37-acre site for Marylebone Station had to be cleared of many houses and small businesses. 507 houses occupied by 3,073 people of the ‘labouring classes’ were demolished and the inhabitants moved to new accommodation, the six storey blocks of Wharncliffe Gardens off St Johns Wood Road. Marylebone was intended to have 8 platforms but initially only 4 were built due to lack of finances by the GCR.
A bigger problem for the GCR than the displacement of poor people was the fact that the east end of Lords Cricket Ground would be lost to the rail lines. The GCR and Lords reached a compromise whereby the railway would be built in cut and cover tunnels between one cricket season and the next, and Lords would get a brand new pitch. To accommodate the proposed 8 platforms three tunnels were constructed, two with double tracks and the third able to take three tracks. In the 1960s Marylebone lost its last inter city services to Nottingham and was demoted to become a local station serving only the Aylesbury and High Wycombe lines, with the occasional train to Banbury.
6/3/1899, Monday (-16,864) The painkiller Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) was patented by Felix Hoffman. The active ingredient is derived from willow.
4/3/1899, Saturday (+16,866) Count Gaston de Chasseloup Laubat raised the world land speed record to 57.6 mph (92.96 kph), see 18/12/1898.
25/2/1899, Saturday (-16,873) Paul Julius Reuter, German founder of Reuters news agency, died.
9/2/1899, Thursday (-16,889) The Boxer Rebellion gained momentum in China. Lack of rain had caused crops to fail, and Boxer pamphlets blamed the Churches for ‘standing in the way of Heaven and angering the Gods’. The Boxer publicity blamed ‘blue-eyed barbarians’ for angering the ancestors and said railways, electric wires and ships must be destroyed. Britain, France, Germany and Russia had forced territorial concessions from China. The Boxers, or ‘society of harmonious fists’, were a secret society, originally formed to promote boxing, who became dedicated to removing foreign influence from China.
4/2/1899, Saturday (-16,894) A rebellion against US rule broke out on the Philippines. The US had backed General Emilio Aguinaldo against Spanish colonial rule (see 10/12/1898), but instead of independence the Philippines came under US rule.
27/1/1899, Friday (-16,902) Charles Best, Canadian co-discoverer of insulin for treating diabetes, was born in West Pembroke, Maine.
23/1/1899, Monday (-16,906) Lord Denning, British Judge and Master of the Rolls, was born.
19/1/1899. Thursday (-16,910) Britain and Egypt established a condominium over Sudan.
17/1/1899, Tuesday (-16,912) (1) Al Capone, American gangster who operated in Chicago, was born in Naples, Italy.
(2) Nevil Shute, English novelist, was born in Ealing, London.
12/1/1899, Thursday (-16,917) Paul Muller, the Swiss chemist who formulated DDT, was born.
8//1/1899, Sunday (-16,921) Solomon Bandaranaike, Sri Lankan Prime Minister 1956-59, was born in the capital, Colombo.
1/1/1899, Sunday (-16,928) The official date on which US military rule succeeded Spanish rule of Cuba.
26/12/1898, Monday (-16,934) Radium was discovered and isolated by Pierre and Marie Curie and G Bemont.
18/12/1898, Sunday (-16,942) (1) At Acheres, near Paris, Count Gaston de Chasseloup Laubat set a land speed record of 39.23 mph (63.13 kph) in a Jeantaud electric car.
(2) The railway from Chathill to Seahouses opened.
12/12/1898, Monday (-16,948) The Treaty of Paris ended the US-Spanish war.
10/12/1898. Saturday (-16,950) The war between Spain and the USA ended. The USA acquired Cuba, Puerto Rico, Guam, and. for a US$20million indemnity, the Philippines. See 4/2/1899.
6/11/1898. Sunday (-16,984) Turkey evacuated its forces from Crete.
1/11/1898, Tuesday (-16,989) New Zealand passed the Old Age Pensions Act. Pensions were paid from March 1899, backdated to January 1899, to men over 65 and women over 60.
18/10/1898, Tuesday (-17,003)
24/9/1898, Saturday (-17,027) Sir Howard Florey, British pathologist and joint discoverer of penicillin with Sir Ernest Chain, was born in Adelaide, Australia.
2/9/1898. Friday (-17,049) Sir Herbert Kitchener led the 25,000-strong British forces to victory over the Mahdists at Omdurman, Sudan, killing 10,000 of the Dervish force, for 500 British deaths, and took Khartoum. This ended 14 years of Dervish rule after the Mahdi, Muhammad Ahmad, had massacred General Charles Gordon and his entire garrison at Khartoum in 1885.
13/8/1898. Saturday (-17,069) (1) US forces captured Manila, capital of the Philippines.
(2) Alfred Hitchcock, film director, born in Leytonstone.
12/8/1898. Friday (-17,070) The sovereignty of Hawaii was transferred to the USA.
10/8/1898, Wednesday (-17,072) The railway from Holsworthy to Bude opened.
8/8/1898, Monday (-17,074) London’s Waterloo and City line, from Waterloo to Bank, opened.
30/7/1898, Saturday (-17,083) Henry Moore, British sculptor, was born in Castleford, Yorkshire, the son of a coal miner.
28/7/1898. Thursday (-17,085) (1) Puerto Rico surrendered to US forces.
(2) Bismarck died, three years after his wife, at Friedrichsruh. He was a Prussian politician and founder of the modern state of Germany.
25/7/1898, Monday (-17,088) During the Spanish–American War, the U.S. invaded Puerto Rico with a landing at Guánica
17/7/1898. Sunday (-17,096) The Frenchman Captain J Marchand reached Fashoda (now Kodok) in the Nile Valley in an attempt to build a continuous belt of French colonial territory from west to east across Africa. However the British similarly wanted a contiguous territory from north to south. Lord Kitchener, advancing south from Egypt to fight the Mahdi from Sudan, conquered the Sudanese on 2/9/1898 and then learned of ‘white men flying a strange flag at Fashoda’. The British reached Fashoda on 19/9/1898, under General Kitchener. War between France and Britain seemed imminent, neither side being willing to give way until Lord Salisbury was able to announce on 4/11/1898 that the French would back down. On 21/3/1899 a declaration was made that united all French territories in north, west, and central Africa into one unit whilst giving Fashoda to the British.
7/7/1898, Thursday (-17,106) The USA formally annexed Hawaii.
3/7/1898, Sunday (-17.110) The US navy destroyed a Spanish fleet attempting to escape the US blockade on the port of Santiago, Chile. On 5/7/1898 US forces captured Santiago itself.
1/7/1898, Friday (-17,112) China leased the New Territories (Hong Kong) to Britain for 99 years.
28/6/1898, Tuesday (-17,115)
26/6/1898, Sunday (-17,117) Wilhelm Messerschmitt, German aviation engineer and designer, was born in Frankfurt.
20/6/1898. Monday (-17,123) The US navy seized the island of Guam.
3/6/1898, Friday (-17,140) Samuel Plimsoll, who devised the Plimsoll Line for the safe loading of ships, died in Folkestone, Kent.
19/5/1898. Thursday (-17,155) William Ewart Gladstone, born 29/12/1809, four times Liberal Prime Minister, died at Hawarden Castle, north Wales, aged 88.
16/5/1898, Monday (-17,158) The narrow gauge railway from Barnstaple to Lynton, 19 miles long, opened.
3/5/1898, Tuesday (-17,171) Golda Meir, Prime Minister of Israel 1969-74, was born.
1/5/1898. Sunday (-17,173) US forces under George Dewey destroyed the Spanish fleet in Manila Bay, Philippines.
24/4/1898. Sunday (-17,180) The United States declared war on Spain as a result of the sinking of the battleship Maine in Havana harbour on 15 February 1898. Fighting began in the Philippine Islands at the Battle of Manila Bay on 1 May 1898, where Commodore George Dewey destroyed a Spanish fleet. The war ended when the USA and Spain signed a peace treaty in Paris on 10 December 1898. As a result Spain lost control over the remains of its empire, including Cuba.
20/4/1898, Wednesday (-17,184) The US demanded the withdrawal of Spanish troops from Cuba.
8/4/1898, Friday (-17,196) The Battle of Atbara.
3/4/1898, Sunday (-17,201) Henry Luce, US publisher who founded Time, Life, and Fortune magazines, was born.
2/4/1898, Saturday (-17,202) The Lambourn Valley railway, Berks, between Newbury and Lambourn, 12 miles, opened.
1/4/1898, Friday (-17,203)
28/3/1898. Monday (-17,207) Germany passed an Act allowing for substantial expansion of its navy.
27/3/1898, Sunday (-17,208) Gloria Swanson, American silent-film star, was born.
15/3/1898, Tuesday (-17,220) Sir Henry Bessemer, inventor of a process for converting cast iron into steel in 1856, died aged 85.
5/3/1898, Saturday (-17,230) Zhou Enlai, Chinese Premier, was born.
1/3/1898, Tuesday (-17,234) The first Communist Party meeting in Russia; the Russian Social Democratic Workers Party met in Minsk.
23/2/1898, Wednesday (-17,240) Emile Zola was imprisoned for the publication of his letter, ‘J’Accuse’, which accused the French Government of anti-Semitism and of wrongly imprisoning Captain Dreyfus. See 13/1/1898.
20/2/1898, Sunday (-17,243) Enzio Ferrari, Italian car manufacturer, was born in Modena.
15/2/1898. Tuesday (-17,248) The US warship Maine blew up in Havana harbour, Cuba. Spanish sabotage was suspected. The USA declared war on Spain on 24/4/1898.
12/2/1898. Saturday (-17,251) Henry Lindfield of Brighton became the first British motorist to be killed in a car crash. As a result of a steering failure he had a leg amputated, and died of shock.
17/1/1898, Monday (-17,277) The Yealmpton (Plymouth) branch opened to passengers.
14/1/1898. Friday (-17,280) Lewis Carroll, author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, died in Guildford, Surrey
13/1/1898. Thursday (-17,281) The Dreyfus affair in France escalated with the famous novelist Emile Zola accusing the French war office of judicial crime in an open letter on the front page of L’Aurore newspaper. Commandant Ferdinand Esterhazy had been acquitted of betrayal of France’s military secrets to Germany even though his handwriting had been identified as that on a note in the German embassy. Moreover, Georges Picquart, the intelligence chief who made the Esterhazy connection, was reposted to Africa. See 23/2/1898.
11/1/1898, Tuesday (-17,283) In Paris, Major Esterhazy was wrongly acquitted of forging documents used to establish the guilt of French Army Officer Captain Alfred Dreyfus.
9/1/1898, Sunday (-17,285) Gracie Fields, singer and music hall star, was born in Rochdale, Lancashire, as Gracie Stansfield.
1/1/1898. Saturday (-17,293) The boroughs of Brooklyn, Queens, Richmond, Manhattan, and The Bronx united to form Greater New York.
30/12/1897, Thursday (-17,295) Zululand was annexed to Natal.
13/12/1897, Monday (-17,312) Russia occupied Port Arthur.
4/12/1897. Saturday (-17,321) Greece and Turkey signed a peace treaty.
1/12/1897, Wednesday (-17,324) The Weston Super Mare, Clevedon, and Portishead Light Railway, 8 ½ miles, opened.
15/11/1897, Monday (-17,340) British Labour leader Aneurin Bevan was born in Tredegar, Wales. He was one of 13 children, son of a miner.
2/11/1897, Tuesday (-17,353) The railway from Strome Ferry to Kyle of Lochalsh opened.
1/11/1897, Monday (-17,354) The railway from Purley to Kingswood was opened.
29/10/1897, Friday (-17,357) Joseph Goebbels, Nazi political leader and propagandist, was born in Rheydt, son of a factory foreman.
20/10/1897, Saturday (-17,366) The British put down a rebellion by Afghan tribes at the Battle of Durgai.
19/10/1897, Friday (-17,367) (1) Henry Sturmey, co-inventor of Sturmey-Archer bicycle gears, completed the first car trip from Land’s End to John O’Groats. It took him ten days, driving a Daimler.
(2) George Pullman, US manufacturer of railway sleeping and dining cars that bear his name, died in Chicago, Illnois, aged 66.
8/10/1897, Friday (-17,378) In America, the Dow Jones company was set up by the financial journalist Charles Henry Dow, 46. He took the price of 12 stocks and averaged their price to create the Dow Jones Index.
26/9/1897, Sunday (-17,390) Pope Paul V was born in Concessio, as Giovanni Battista Montini.
25/9/1897. Saturday (-17,391) Britain’s first motor bus service began, in Bradford, Yorkshire.
20/9/1897, Monday (-17,396)
10/9/1897. Friday (-17,406) London taxi driver George Smith was fined £1, at Marlborough Street Court. He was the first Briton to be convicted of drunken driving. The defendant had driven his electric cab onto the pavement and into the front corridor of 165 Bond Street. He was found guilty and fined £1.
9/9/1897, Thursday (-17,407) The Hawaiian Senate approved the US annexation of Hawaii on 16/6/1897. Sugar plantation owners on Hawaii had demanded annexation; however Japan had some 25,000 nationals on Hawaii, and protested at the move.
5/9/1897, Sunday (-17,411)
1/9/1897. Wednesday (-17,415) Boston’s underground railway began operating.
31/8/1897. Tuesday (-17,416) World Jewish leaders met in Basle, Switzerland to discuss their hopes for a Jewish homeland in Palestine. 200 delegates from all branches of Judaism came, mainly from east and Central Europe.
29/8/1897. Sunday (-17,418) A New York chef, to appeal to Chinese and American tastes, devised Chop Suey, meaning ‘various things’, the most famous Chinese dish.
27/8/1897, Friday (-17,420) The light railway between Chichester and Selsey, Sussex, opened. It closed in 1935.
20/8/1897, Friday (-17,427) Sir Ronald Ross discovered that malaria was spread by mosquitoes.
19/8/1897, Thursday (-17,428) The first taxi cabs began operating in the UK. They were restricted to the City and West End of London.
17/8/1897, Tuesday (-17,430)
11/8/1897, Wednesday (-17,436) Enid Blyton, author of children’s books, was born in Dulwich.
10/8/1897. Tuesday (-17,437) The Royal Automobile Club was founded, under the name of The Automobile Club of Great Britain.
24/7/1897, Saturday (-17,454) Amelia Earhart, aviator, was born in Atchison, Kansas.
21/7/1897. Wednesday (-17,457) The Tate Gallery in London was officially opened, on the site of Millbank Prison.
22/6/1897. Tuesday (-17,486) Queen Victoria celebrated her diamond jubilee.
16/6/1897, Wednesday (-17,492) The USA annexed the Hawaiian Islands, see 9/9/1897.
15/6/1897, Tuesday (-17,493) Tirpitz was appointed German Naval Secretary.
12/6/1897, Saturday (-17,496) (1) Anthony Eden, Conservative Prime Minister, was born at Windlestone Hall, Bishop Auckland, Durham. He later became the Earl of Avon.
(2) Carl Elsener took out a patent for the Swiss Army Knife.
(3) A magnitude 8.8 earthquake hit Assam, NE India. 1,542 were killed as a plateau in Shillong district suddenly rose 15 metres, throwing boulders, gravestones and even people into the air.
27/5/1897, Thursday (-17,512) John Cockroft, nuclear physicist, was born in Yorkshire.
26/5/1897, Wednesday (-17,513) Bram Stoker’s Dracula was first published.
22/5/1897. Saturday (-17,517) The Prince of Wales opened the Blackwall Tunnel in London.
19/5/1897, Wednesday (-17,520) Oscar Wilde was released from Reading gaol.
17/4/1897. Saturday (-17,552) War broke out between Greece and the Ottoman Empire. Turkey accused Greece of fomenting revolt in Crete. On 19/5/1897, after several defeats by Turkey and having been forced to withdraw from Crete, Greece signed an armistice with Turkey at Thessaly.
15/5/1897, Thursday (-17,554) The Tipton to Budleigh Salterton railway opened.
3/4/1897, Saturday (-17,566) Johannes Brahms, German composer, died at his home in Vienna, aged 64.
31/3/1897, Wednesday (-17,569) Gold was discovered in The Klondike, Canada.
2/3/1897, Tuesday (-17,598)
19/2/1897. Friday (-17,609) (1) The French tightrope walker Charles Blondin died. He was born on 28/2/1824.
(2) The Women’s Institute organisation was founded at Stoney Creek in Ontario by Mrs Hoodless. The first W I meeting was on 25/9/1897. The W I idea was brought to England by a Mrs Watt during World War One.
10/2/1897. Wednesday (-17,618) Greece sent ships and troops to Crete, 4 days after Crete’s proclamation of union with Greece.
13/1/1897, Wednesday (-17,646) Mr and Mrs Bradley Martin, members of New York’s ‘top 400’, threw an extremely extravagant party in which the ballroom of the Waldorf Astoria was made into a replica of Versailles. This event, in the face of an economic recession, attracted much criticism in the popular press, and the Martins fled to England.
12/1/1897, Tuesday (-17,647) Sir Isaac Pitman, who invented phonetic shorthand in 1837, died in Somerset aged 84.
21/12/1896, Monday (-17,669) The Liverpool Overhead Railway was extended to Dingle. The Dingle area had become urbanised in the 1890s and was a valuable revenue source for the line.
12/12/1896, Saturday (-17,678) Guigliemo Marconi gave his first public demonstration of radio, at Tonybee Hall, east London.
10/12/1896. Thursday (-17,680) Alfred Bernhardt Nobel, Swedish chemist who invented dynamite, died in San Remo, Italy. See 14/7/1867.
4/12/1896. Friday (-17,686) Heavy gales destroyed the chain pier at Brighton.
16/11/1896. Monday (-17,704) Birth of the British fascist leader Oswald Mosley, in London.
14/11/1896. Saturday (-17,706) (1) The speed limit for ‘horseless carriages’ was raised from 4mph, or 2mph in towns, to 14 mph.
(2) Mannie Eisenhower, wife of America’s 34th President, was born in Boone, Iowa, as Mannie Doud.
13/11/1896, Friday (-17,707) The Arnold car, made by Walter Arnold of Peckham, south London, made its first appearance on British roads. This was the first car to have an electric starter; older cars had to be crank-started by hand.
2/11/1896, Monday (-17,718) General Accident issued the first motor insurance policies in Britain.
3/10/1896, Saturday (-17,748) Queen Victoria became the first British monarch to be captured on moving film, at Balmoral.
24/9/1896, Thursday (-17,757) F Scott Fitzgerald, US author, was born.
21//9/1896. Monday (-17,760) Herbert Kitchener, who took control of the Anglo-Egyptian army in March 1896, with the aim of re-conquering the Sudan, took the town of Dongola.
9/9/1896. Wednesday (-17,772) Surgery was performed on the heart for the first time, at Frankfurt City Hospital, Germany. The 22 year old patient had been stabbed in the heart during a pub brawl and stitches were inserted in the organ.
29/8/1896. Saturday (-17,783) Many Armenians, perhaps 3,000 or more, were being killed in Turkey three days after the Armenians seized the Ottoman Bank in Istanbul, to draw the world’s attention to their fight against Ottoman rule. The Armenian uprising began in 1894, and they hoped to break free of Turkish rule as Bulgaria had done. Some 200,000 Armenians were killed in Anatolia. Britain’s support for Armenia threatened the favoured position it had held for over 40 years in Istanbul. Germany began to manoeuvre to take Britain’s place, eager to secure concessions for its Berlin to Baghdad Railway project.
17/8/1896. Monday (-17,795) (1) The first pedestrian was killed by a motor vehicle in Britain. A car doing 4 mph killed Mrs Bridget Driscoll of Croydon. She froze in panic as the car approached.
(2) Gold was discovered at Bonanza Creek on the Klondike River in Canada’s Yukon Territory. This led to the great Gold Rush of 1898, in which the city of Dawson grew to over 25,000 people.
6/8/1896. Thursday (-17,806) Madagascar was proclaimed a French colony.
1/8/1896, Saturday (-17,811) Aberystwyth Cliff Railway, Wales, opened.
28/7/1896, Tuesday (-17,815) The City of Miami was incorporated. It had been a small Indian trading post with two dwellings, a storehouse, and a small fort when the railway was built there in 1896. On incorporation it had a population of 260. By 1910 it had a population of 5,471; by 1920, 29,571.
16/7/1896, Thursday (-17,827) Trygve Lie, Norwegian politician and Secretary General at the United Nations, was born in Oslo.
26/6/1896. Friday (-17,847) The world’s first permanent cinema opened in New Orleans; admission was 10 cents. Britain’s first cinema opened in Islington on 5/8/1901, and charged between 6d and 3s for entry. However by World War One most cinemas were only charging 3d or 6d. The first drive in cinema opened on 6/6/1933 in Camden, New Jersey, and could hold 400 cars.
15/6/1896, Monday (+17,858) A tsunami created a 100 foot wave that struck Sanriku, Japan, killing thousands along 170 miles of coastline.
8/6/1896, Monday (-17,865) The Brechin to Edzell railway opened.
7/6/1896, Sunday (-17,866) Imre Nagy, Prime Minister of Hungary 1953-55 and 1956, was born.
4/6/1896. Thursday (-17,869) Henry Ford took his Ford automobile for a trial run around the streets of Detroit.
2/6/1896, Tuesday (-17,871) Marconi was granted patent no.12039 for his system of communication using radio waves. The maximum communications range was then about 12 miles.
1/6/1896, Monday (-17,872) The Newmilns to Darvel railway opened.
9/5/1896. Saturday (-17,895) The first Horseless Carriage Show opened to the motor trade, with ten models on show at London’s Imperial Institute.
6/5/1896, Wednesday (-17,898) In the US, Samuel Pierpoint Langley succeeded in flying a glider 3,300 feet (one kilometre).
4/5/1896. Monday (-17,900) The Daily Mail was first published, founded by Lord Northcliffe.
6/4/1896, Monday (-17,928) (1) The modern Olympic Games, revived by Pierre de Coubertin, were opened at Athens. The original Olympic Games were first recorded in 776 BC although they had already been played for centuries by then; they were played every four years in honour of the God Zeus. They were abolished by the Christian Roman Emperor Theodosius, to discourage paganism, in AD 394.
(2) The Snowdon Mountain Railway, Wales, opened.
1/3/1896. Sunday (-17,964) An Italian force invading Tigre in Ethiopia was crushed by British and Ethiopian forces under Menelik at the Battle of Adowa. 100,000 Ethiopians slaughtered 7,000 Italians. The war was essentially unnecessary for Italy; facing economic depression and anarchy at home, Crispi, the Italian Prime Minister, decided on a ‘cheap foreign war’. General Baratieri took command of an army of 16,000, and recklessly provoked Ethiopia by occupying northern Tigre. He then lingered there for a year giving the Ethiopians time to muster a large army. Menelik finally lured the Italians into a fight, but the battle was chaotic. Italian orders were misunderstood and brigades became separated, allowing the Ethiopians to cut them down one by one. This defeat ensured that Ethiopia remained independent for another forty years, until avenged by Mussolini.
29/2/1896, Saturday (-17,965) Ranchhodji Morarji Desai, Indian Prime Minister who was imprisoned with Gandhi, was born.
28/1/1896, Tuesday (-17,997) Arnold Miller, of East Peckham, became the first motorist charged with speeding, at Tonbridge Magistrates Court. He had driven at over the 2 mph speed limit in a built up area past the window of the local constable’s house just as he was about to have dinner. The constable left his meal, grabbed his helmet, and gave chase on a bicycle, catching up the driver after 5 miles. Miller was driving at about 8 mph, according to witnesses. He was fined 1s plus costs.
15/1/1896. Wednesday (-18,010) Britain and France signed an agreement on their spheres of influence in S.E. Asia. Both countries guaranteed the independence of Siam (Thailand) and Britain recognised the French protectorate of Laos.
14/1/1896, Tuesday (-18,011) John Dos Passos, US writer, was born in Chicago, Illinois.
12/1/1896, Sunday (-18,013) Tommy Handley, British comedian, was born in Liverpool.
6/1/1896. Monday (-18,019) Cecil Rhodes was forced to resign as Prime Minister of Cape Colony because of his involvement in the Jameson raid.
5/1/1896. Sunday (-18,020) The German physicist Wilhelm Roentgen gave the first demonstration of X rays.
4/1/1896. Saturday (-18,021) Utah became the 45th state of the USA.
2/1/1896, Thursday (-18,023) The Jameson Raid, into the Boer colony of Transvaal to support British settlers, ended in failure.
29/12/1895. Sunday (-18,027) Leander Starr Jameson, an agent of the British South Africa Company, invaded the Boer Republic of Transvaal with 470 men. On 2/1/1896 Jameson surrendered At Doorn Kop after a defeat at Krugersdorp. On 3/1/1896 Kaiser William II sent a telegram to Paul Kruger congratulating him on the defeat of Jameson. This caused outrage in Britain, which saw the telegram as an attempt by Germany to expand its influence in Africa.
22/12/1895, Sunday (-18,034) The physicist Wilhelm Roentgen made a radiograph (X-ray photograph) of his wife’s hand.
17/12/1895. Tuesday (-18,039) Relations between the US and Britain were under severe strain because of a border dispute between Guiana and Venezuela.
14/12/1895. Saturday (-18,042) The future King George VI was born in Sandringham, Norfolk, second son of George V and Mary, see 11/12/1936.
30/11/1895. Saturday (-18,056) China and Russia made a secret treaty so that Russia could build the Trans-Siberian railway through Manchuria to the port of Vladivostock.
29/11/1895, Friday (-18,057) William Tubman, President of Liberia, was born.
8/11/1895. Friday (-18,078) Wilhelm Roentgen discovered X rays, during an experiment at the University of Wurtzburg. He made the first radiograph, or X-ray, of his wife’s hand, on 22/12/1895.
1/11/1895, Friday (-18,085) The first motoring association, the American Motor League, was founded in Chicago, Illinois.
17/10/1895, Thursday (-18,100) The first motoring offence in the UK resulting in a court summons. John Henry Knight of Farnham was charged with ‘permitting a locomotive to be at work’ in Castle Street Farnham without a licence, and James Pullinger was charged with operating the same ‘locomotive’ during prohibited hours. The prosecution was brought under a Surrey Council by-law requiring all locomotives other than those used in agriculture or road maintenance to be licensed by the Council and to be driven on the public highway only during set hours. The case was heard on 31/10/1895 before R H Combe at Farnham Petty Sessions. The locomotive was a motor vehicle owned by Knight, who watched whilst Pullinger drove it. Both defendants were fined 2s 6d each.
15/10/1895, Tuesday (-18,102) The first UK motor show, at the Agricultural Showground, Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
8/10/1895, Tuesday (-18,109) Juan Peron, Argentinean general and nationalist dictator, was born in Lobos.
6/10/1895. Sunday (-18,111) Sir Henry Wood’s promenade concerts began at Queen’s Hall, London.
30/9/1895. Monday (-18,117) The capital of Madagascar, Tananarive, surrendered to the French.
28/9/1895. Saturday (-18,119) The French chemist Louis Pasteur died (see 6/7/1885). He had been born in Dole, France, on 27/12/1822.
11/9/1895, Wednesday (-18,136) Three African Chiefs, Khama of the Ngwato tribe, Bathoen of the Ngwaketse and Sebele of the Kwena, from Bechuanaland (now Botswana) met with the British Prime Minister, Joseph Chamberlain, Their mission was to obtain British protection from the exploitative colonisation of Cecil Rhodes, who was then establishing White economic domination over African lands across much of southern Africa. In fact Rhodes was then preparing for the disastrous Jameson Raid (see 2/1/1896), against Chamberlain’s wishes. This made Chamberlain more sympathetic to the African Chiefs, and British Royal protection was granted to the existing tribal rule in Bechuanaland.
29/8/1895. Thursday (-18,149) The Rugby League was formed at a meeting at the George Hotel in Huddersfield.
26/8/1895. Monday (-18,152) A hydroelectric plant designed by Nikola Tesla and built by Westinghouse opened at Niagara Falls.
20/8/1985, Tuesday (-18,158) Snaefell Mountain Railway, Isle of Man, opened.
5/8/1895. Monday (-18,173) Engels died in London, aged 74. He was an immigrant businessman who, along with Marx, founded the political philosophy called communism. Marx was the better of the two at theory but Engels could communicate these ideas better to the public.
1/8/1895. Thursday (-18,177) (1) The railway from Daventry to Marton Junction (Leamington Spa) opened.
(2) The people of Gutian in Fujian Province, destroyed churches and killed more than ten Australian and British missionaries, including women and children.
31/7/1895, Wednesday (-18,178) The Basque Nationalist Party was founded by Sabino de Arana Goiri (1865-1903). He did much to revive the Basque language, publishing newspapers, magazines, and books on subjects ranging from grammar to history in this language. He also coined the word Euzkadi for the Basque national people, and designed the first Basque national flag, the Ikurrrina.
28/7/1895, Sunday (-18,181) In Poland the Peasant Electoral Committee (Ludowy Komitet Wyborcy) assembled in Rzeszow; from this meeting emerged the Polish Peasant Party (Polskie Stronnictwo Ludowe). The PSL demanded universal suffrage, redistribution of land from the gentry, and an end to peasant service obligations to their landlord.
8/7/1895. Monday (-18,201) The opening of the Delagoa Bay railway, from Johannesburg to Maputo Bay, gave the Transvaal access to the sea independent of the British colonies.
1/7/1895, Monday (-18,208) The pay for a junior civil servant in Britain, aged 17-20, ranged from £70 to £250 per annum, with a possible £100 bonus for efficiency available. In England, a domestic servant was paid £18.80 annually, and received board and lodging worth ca, £12.50 annually with the job. A female Lancashire cotton worker received £37.10 annually (no board and lodging provided).
29/6/1895, Saturday (-18,210) The foundation stone of Westminster Cathedral, London, was laid.
25/6/1895, Tuesday (-18,206) The Marquess of Salisbury resumed office as Prime Minister.
19/6/1895. Wednesday (-18,220) The 61-mile Kiel Canal between the Baltic and North Sea opened by German Emperor Wilhelm II.
11/6/1895, Tuesday (-18,228) the first pneumatic-tyred car appeared on French roads. This was Edoaurd Michelin’s Peugeot, which was a competitor in the Paris-Bordeaux motor race. This car only came ninth, because it needed 22 inner tube changes, but gave a very smooth ride.
2/6/1895, Sunday (-18,237) Japan took formal possession of Formosa (Taiwan) from China.
1/6/1895, Saturday (-18,238) The railway from Delabole to Wadebridge opened.
25/5/1895, Saturday (-18,245) Oscar Wilde’s second trial ended, and he was sentenced to two year’s hard labour.
20/5/1895. Monday (-18,250) The US Supreme court ruled that income tax, introduced in 1894, was unconstitutional.
18/5/1895, Saturday (-18,252) The Shipley Glen Cable Tramway, West Yorkshire, opened.
15/5/1895, Wednesday (-18,255) Joseph Whitaker, who founded Whitaker’s Almanac in 1869, died.
1/5/1895,Wednesday (-18,269) The railway from Blackheath to Slade Green via Bexleyheath opened.
26/4/1895. Friday (-18,274) At the Old Bailey, the trial of Oscar Wilde for homosexuality, then a crime, began.
17/4/1895. Wednesday (-18,283) Japan and China signed the peace treaty of Shimonoseki. China recognised the independence of Korea (although Japan did not have to recognise this), and ceded Formosa (Taiwan), the Pescadores Islands, and the Liaodong Peninsula, to Japan. China also had to pay a huge indemnity to Japan, and allow Japanese trade in four treaty ports, which would be exempt from Chinese taxation. Rivalry between Japan and China over Korea had started this war; the immediate cause was the assassination of a pro-Japanese politician in Korea, which gave Japan an excuse to send in troops. Japan opened hostilities without declaring war, by sinking a Chinese troopship and machine-gunning the survivors. However on 23/4/1895 Russia, France, and Germany intervened, forcing Japan to hand back the Liaodong Peninsula.
5/4/1895, Friday (-18,295) Oscar Wilde sued the Marquess of Queensberry for libel at the Old Bailey. The Marquess was alleged to have left a note at Mr Wilde’s club accusing him of sodomy. The Marquess, keen on boxing, was annoyed that his son, Alfred, had an intimate relationship with Mr Wilde. Oscar Wilde lost his case.
22/3/1895, Friday (-18,309) The first demonstration of celluloid cinema film was given in Paris by Auguste and Louis Lumiere.
15/3/1895, Friday (-18,316) Bridget Clary, aged 27, was burnt to death for witchcraft at Battyradhen, County Tipperary.
14/2/1895, Thursday (-18,345) Oscar Wilde’s final play, The Importance of Being Earnest, opened in London.
25/1/1895, Friday (-18,365) Wales lost 3 – 0 to Ireland in the first ever hockey international, held at Rhyl in Wales.
24/1/1895, Thursday (-18,366) Lord Randolph Churchill, founder of the British Conservative Party, died.
1/1/1895, Tuesday (-18,389) J Edgar Hoover, American criminologist and founder of the FBI, was born in Washington DC.
30/12/1894, Sunday (-18,391) Amelia Bloomer, American social reformer, campaigner for temperance and women’s rights, died.
22/12/1894. Saturday (-18,399) The Dreyfus case opened. Alfred Dreyfus, French artillery officer, was convicted of selling army secrets to Germany, and imprisoned on Devil’s Island. Later he was pardoned and completely exonerated.
20/12/1894, Thursday (-18,401) Robert Menzies, Australian Prime Minister, was born.
14/12/1894. Friday (-18,407) Eugene Debs, President of the American Railway Union, was jailed for 6 months for ignoring an injunction to end the Pullman strike. The strike began on 11/5/1894 when the Pullman Company reduced wages but did not cut rents for workers living in company housing. The strike turned violent with riots and burning or railroad cars. Attorney-General Richard Olney obtained an injunction to end the strike on the grounds it was obstructing the mail, and when this was ignored federal troops arrived in Chicago to enforce the court order. By 10/7/1894 the strike was broken.
11/12/1894. Tuesday (-18,410) The first motor show opened in Paris, with nine exhibitors. It closed on 25/12/1894.
8/12/1894, Saturday (-18,413) James Thurber, author, was born in Columbus, Ohio.
7/12/1894, Friday (-18,414) Ferdinand de Lesseps, French diplomat and engineer who promoted the Suez Canal, died aged 89.
3/12/1894. Monday (-18,418) Robert Louis Stevenson, who wrote Treasure Island, died.
1/12/1894, Saturday (-18,420) (1) The first motoring journal, La Locomotion Automobile, was published in Paris. According to this publication, cars were unlikely to replace horse drawn traffic and would improve things in cities.
(2) The Fortrose branch railway opened.
22/11/1894. Thursday (-18,429) The USA and Japan signed a commercial treaty.
21/11/1894. Wednesday (-18,430) Japan defeated China at Port Arthur.
4/11/1894. Sunday (-18,447) First turbine ship launched.
1/11/1894, Thursday (-18,450) Alexander III, Tsar of Russia, died. Nicolas II became Tsar of Russia.
15/10/1894. Monday (-18,467) Captain Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish army officer, was arrested for betraying military secrets to Germany. A French agent had discovered evidence of betrayal of French secrets in the German embassy. Suspicion fell on Dreyfus; he was ordered to take a handwriting test, his hand shook, and he was arrested. He was sentenced to life imprisonment on Devils Island.
Aged 34, Dreyfus was an unlikely spy. Cold, serious, punctilious in his duties, he had no money problems because his father was a wealthy textile manufacturer. He was however Jewish and so was disliked by the militant Catholics who dominated the officer corps. Anti-Semitism was growing in France. At his court-martial evidence was thin and his lawyers were barred from court.
28/9/1894. Friday (-18,484) The first Marks and Spencer store opened, as a Penny Bazaar at Cheetham Hill, Manchester.
18/9/1894. Tuesday (-18,494) The Blackpool Tower opened. It is a 500 foot high replica of the Eiffel Tower.
1/9/1894, Saturday (-18,511) The first use of postcards with adhesive stamps in Britain.
27/8/1894. Monday (-18,516) In the USA, the Wilson-Gorman Tariff Act made income tax a law.
2/8/1894. Thursday (-18,541) Death Duties were introduced in Britain.
1/8/1894. Wednesday (-18,542) War was formally declared between China and Japan.
30/7/1894, Monday (-18,544) The San Cataldo rail tunnel, Italy, 5.1 km long, opened.
27/7/1894, Friday (-18,547) Korea declared war on China.
26/7/1894, Thursday (-18,548) Aldous Huxley, novelist, was born.
25/7/1894, Wednesday (-18,549) Japanese forces sank the Kowshing, a British ship carrying Chinese forces to Korea.
22/7/1894. Sunday (-18,552) The first automobile race took place, between Paris and Rouen.
17/7/1894. Tuesday (-18,557) Italians took Kassala on the Eritrea/Sudan border from the Mahdists.
4/7/1894, Friday (-18,570) The republic of Hawaii was declared with 50-year old Judge Sanford Dole as President.
30/6/1894. Saturday (-18,574) London’s Tower Bridge was officially opened to traffic. Sir Horace Jones and J Wolfe Barry designed it.
24/6/1894, Sunday (-18,580) The President of France, Marie Francois Carnot, was stabbed to death at Lyons by an Italian anarchist.
23/6/1894. Saturday (-18,581) King Edward VIII was born at White Lodge, Richmond, Surrey, the eldest son of George V and Queen Mary.
22/6/1984, Saturday (-18,582) Dahomey became a French colony.
18/6/1894, Monday (-18,586) The Turchino rail tunnel, Italy, 6.9 km long, opened.
21/5/1894. Monday (-18,614) The Manchester Ship Canal, which had taken 25 years to build, was officially opened by Queen Victoria (see 1/1/1894). The Queen travelled by rain from Windsor, leaving at 11.10 a.m. and travelling on the Great Western Railway via Reading, Oxford, and Wolverhampton, which she made by 2pm.Continuing via Stafford and Crewe, Queen Victoria arrived at London Road Station, Manchester, at about 4 p.m. The Queen then travelled along the canal by boat.
13/5/1894, Sunday (-18,622) Asgeir Asgeirsson, President of Iceland, was born.
1/5/1894. Tuesday (-18,634) David Coxey, who led a march of 100,000 unemployed to the capital, Washington, to demand economic reform, was arrested.
30/4/1894, Monday (-18,635) The Liverpool Overhead Railway was extended from Alexandra Dock to Seaforth Sands.
26/4/1894, Thursday (-18,639) Rudolf Hess, Adolf Hitler’s deputy, was born in Alexandria, Egypt.
17/4/1894, Tuesday (-18,648) Nikita Kruschev, Soviet leader, was born in Kalinovka, near Kursk.
14/4/1894, Saturday (-18,651) Edison’s kinetoscope, or moving pictures, were shown to the public for the first time.
11/4/1894. Wednesday (-18,654) Britain established a protectorate over Uganda.
15/3/1894. Thursday (-18,681) Germany and France signed a treaty outlining their spheres of influence in tropical Africa
13/3/1894. Tuesday (-18,683) The world’s first professional striptease performance took place at the Divan Fayanou Music Hall, Paris. It consisted of a woman getting ready for bed.
12/3/1894, Monday (-18,684) Coca Cola was sold in bottles for the first time.
6/3/1894, Tuesday (-18,690)
3/3/1894, Saturday (-18,693) Gladstone resigned after splitting his party over the issue of Irish Home Rule. He was succeeded by Lord Rosebery as Prime Minister.
10/2/1894, Saturday (-18,714) (1) Harold Macmillan, Lord Stockton, British Conservative Prime Minister, was born in London.
(2) Germany signed a commercial treaty with Russia.
9/2/1894, Friday (-18,715) Adolphe Saxe, the Belgian musical instrument maker who invented the Saxophone, died in Paris.
30/1/1894. Tuesday (-18,725) Charles King of Detroit received a patent for the pneumatic hammer.
3/1/1894, Wednesday (-18,752) (1) The Italian government ordered the dissolution of the Fasci, and the arrest of their ringleaders. Over 1,000 people were deported to Italian islands, often without trial. The Fasci were small alliances, groups of radical or socialist academics and peasants, and some anarchists, local gentry and Mafiosi. The name derived from the fasces, or bundle, of sticks used in ancient Rome. Starting in Sicily in 1893 the fasci agitated for political ends, with strikes and riots, alarming the larger landowners.
(2) Elizabeth Peabody, American educator and founder in 1960 of the first kindergarten in the US, died aged 89.
1/1/1894. Monday (-18,754) The 35 mile Manchester Ship Canal opened. Its official opening by Queen Victoria was on 21 May 1894.
26/12/1893. Tuesday (-18,760) Mao Tse Tung, Chinese Communist
leader, was born in Hunan. He was the
son of a peasant farmer.
19/12/1893, Tuesday (-18,767) The Brent to Kingsbridge railway, Devon, opened.
12/12/1893. Tuesday (-18,774) The French advanced down the valley of the Niger from Kayes in Senegal and captured Timbuktu, capital of Mali.
28/11/1893, Tuesday (-18,788) Women first voted in New Zealand, at the General Election, see 19/9/1893.
19/11/1893, Sunday (-18,797) The first newspaper colour supplement produced; a 4-page section of the New York World.
12/11/1893, Sunday (-18,804) The Durand Agreement, defining the border between Afghanistan and India, was signed.
6/11/1893. Monday (-18,810) (1) The Totley rail tunnel, UK, 6 km long, opened.
(2) The composer Peter Illich Tchaikovsky, born.7/5/1840, died of cholera, after drinking infected water.
(3) Edsel Ford, US car executive, only child of Henry Ford, was born in Detroit.
4/11/1893. Saturday (-18,812) The British defeated the Matabele in Zimbabwe and occupied the capital, Bulawayo.
28/10/1893, Saturday (-18,819) The British Royal Navy’s first destroyer, HMS Havoc, underwent sea trials.
18/10/1893, Wednesday (-18,829) (1) Lucy Stone, American campaigner for women’s rights, died.
(2) The railway from Camelford to Delabole opened.
3/10/1893. Tuesday (-18,844) Siam (Thailand) gave up all its territory east of the Mekong Rover, and recognised Laos as a French protectorate.
19/9/1893. Tuesday (-18,858) New Zealand became the first country to allow women the vote. The Women’s Christian Temperance Union had been pressing for this for 8 years, and had presented three petitions to the House of Representatives. Each time the number of signatures rose, until a record 31,872 names swayed the House. Despite an unscrupulous liquor lobby, the WCTU won and intended to press for women’s votes in other countries. See 28/11/1893.
18/9/1893. Monday (-18,859) In the USA, the Great Northern Pacific Railway opened. This was the most northerly of the USA’s rail routes between the Mississippi River and the Pacific.
7/9/1893, Thursday (-18,870) (1) The Featherstone Massacre. In Yorkshire, striking miners campaigning for a living wage were fired upon; soldiers killed 2 and wounded 16.
(2) Leslie Hore-Belisha, British Liberal politician, was born in Devonport.
4/9/1893, Monday (-18,873) The railway from Goudhurst (Hope Mill) to Hawkhurst opened.
1/9/1893, Friday (-18,876) Second Irish Home Rule Bill passed in the Commons, but rejected on 8/9/1893 by the Lords.
14/8/1893. Monday (-18,894) The world’s first car registration plates were introduced, in France. French drivers also were required to have driving licences from this date, for which the passing of a driving test was needed; French tests also began from 14/8/1893. See 13/3/1935 for British tests. From 10/3/1899 French motorists had to carry a driving licence in card form at all times. See 14/1/1903 for the UK.
10/8/1893, Thursday (-18,898) The railway from Tresmeer to Camelford opened.
6/8/1893. Sunday (-18,902) The 3 ½ mile Corinth Canal opened in Greece. Cut up to 300 feet deep, it took ten years to build.
13/7/1893. Thursday (-18,926) Germany passed a bill to substantially increase the size of its army.
13/6/1893, Tuesday (-18,956) The first women’s golf championship was held, at Britain’s Royal Lytham course.
3/5/1893, Wednesday (-18,997) Golda Meir, Israeli Prime Minister, was born in Kiev, Russia, as Golda Mabovitch, the daughter of a carpenter.
30/4/1893, Sunday (-19,000) Joachim von Ribbentrop, Hitler’s foreign minister, was born
23/4/1893, Sunday (-19,007) Billy Smart, British circus proprietor, was born in London, the son of a fairground owner.
18/4/1893. Tuesday (-19,012) Belgium introduced pluralism and universal male suffrage.
11/3/1893, Saturday (-19,050) The Avon Gorge funicular railway, Bristol, opened. It operated for 40 years before closure.
23/2/1893, Thursday (-19,066) (Road, Scitech) The diesel engine was patented by Rudolf Deisel.
20/2/1893, Monday (-19,069) Pierre Beauregard, American Confederate General, died.
13/2/1893, Monday (-19,076) A Home Rule Bill (for Ireland) was introduced to the UK Commons.
9/2/1893. Thursday (-19,080) The world’s first public striptease took place at the Moulin Rouge, Paris.
4/2/1893, Saturday (-19,085) The first stretch of the Liverpool Overhead railway (Alexandra Dock to Herculaneum Dock) was opened by Lord Salisbury.
1/2/1893, Wednesday (-19,088) In New Jersey, USA, Thomas Edison opened the world’s first film studio.
17/1/1893. Tuesday (-19,103) (1) US troops landed on Hawaii and annexed it to the USA. The annexation was generally peaceful. The US was concerned about the rise of Japan as a world power, the need for the US to have a Pacific base, the anti-US attitude of the Hawaiian Queen, and demands from Hawaiian sugar growers to sell inside the US tariff area.
(2) Rutherford Hayes, US Republican and 19th President from 1877 to 1881, died in Fremont, Ohio.
14/1/1893. Saturday (-19,106) The UK Labour Party was founded in Bradford, W Yorks.
12/1/1893, Thursday (-19,108) Hermann Goering, German Nazi leader and founder of the Luftwaffe, was born in Rosenbaum, Bavaria.
15/12/1892, Thursday (-19,136) Paul Getty, US oil tycoon, was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
4/12/1892, Sunday (-19,147) General Franco, Spanish dictator, was born in El Ferrol.
3/12/1892. Saturday (-19,148) The French imposed a protectorate on Dahomey (Benin) after they captured its capital, Abomey.
25/11/1892, Friday (-19,156) Pierre de Coubertin proposed the revival of the Olympic Games.
6/11/1892, Sunday (-19,175) The aviator Sir John Alcock was born in Manchester. In 1919 he made the first transatlantic flight, with Sir Arthur Whitten-Brown.
5/11/1892, Saturday (-19,176) John Haldane, pioneer in genetic research, was born.
1/11/1892, Tuesday (-19,180)
6/10/1892. Thursday (-19,206) Alfred Lord Tennyson, poet laureate from 1850, died at Aldworth, Surrey. He was born on 6/8/1809.
4/10/1892, Tuesday (-19,208) Engelbert Dolfuss, Austrian dictator, was born.
1/10/1892, Saturday (-19,211) The railway from Paddock Wood to Goudhurst (Hope Mill) opened.
1/9/1892, Thursday (-19,241) The railway from Chalfont and Latimer to Aylesbury was opened, see 8/7/1889.
24/8/1892, Wednesday (-19,249) Goodison Park, the home of Everton Football Club, Liverpool, opened.
18/8/1892. Thursday (-19,255) In Britain, William Ewart Gladstone formed his fourth Liberal government after his election defeat of the Conservatives under Lord Salisbury.
17/8/1892. Wednesday (-19,256) (1) Mae West, US film actress, was born in Brooklyn, New York. She was the daughter of a boxer.
(2) Russia and France signed a military convention.
11/8/1892, Thursday (-19,262) (1) The Marquess of Salisbury left office as Prime Minister.
(2) Hugh McDaimid, Scottish poet and founder of the Scottish Nationalist Party, was born.
28/7/1892, Thursday (-19,276) The railway from Launceston to Tresmeer opened.
18/7/1892, Monday (-19,286) The pioneer travel agent Thomas Cook died.
7/7/1892, Thursday (-19,297) Bridgnorth Cliff Railway, Shropshire, opened.
6/7/1892, Wednesday (-19,298) Dadabhai Naoroji became Britain’s first non-White MP. He was elected Liberal representative for Central Finsbury, London, by a majority of 3 votes over his Unionist rival.
4/7/1892. Monday (-19,300) James Kier Hardie, standing in the General Election at Holytown, Lanarkshire, became the first Socialist to win a seat in the British Parliament. He was MP for the London docklands area of West Ham. He was elected as an independent socialist but planned to form a Labour party to represent the workers. See 14/1/1893.
1/7/1892, Friday (-19,303) The railway from Nunhead through Bellingham, SE London, opened.
20/5/1892, Friday (-19,345) The last broad gauge train left Paddington at 5.00 pm for Plymouth. The engine returned to Paddington with the last up train early the next morning.
7/5/1892, Saturday (-19,358) Josip Broz (Marshal Tito), Yugoslav Communist President, was born in Kumrovec, near Klanjec, on the border of Croatia and Slovenia.
6/5/1892, Friday (-19,359) A worker’s uprising began in Lodz, Poland; all workers came out on strike. Order was not restored until 10/5/1893, by which time 217 people had been killed or wounded and 350 arrested.
5/5/1892, Thursday (-19,360)
3/5/1892, Tuesday (-19,362) Broad gauge track construction was abandoned in Britain.
2/5/1892, Monday (-19,363) Baron Mandred von Richtofen, German air ace of World War One, known as the ‘Red Baron’ because he flew a red Fokker, was born in Schweidnitz in Prussia, to aristocratic parents.
13/4/1892. Wednesday (-19,382) Sir Arthur (Bomber) Harris, RAF Marshal was born. He joined the Royal Flying Corps in 1915, and was appointed Commander in Chief of the RAF Bomber Command in 1942. From 1942 on he developed and applied the technique of “saturation bombing” to Axis occupied cities, totally demolishing them.
5/4/1892, Tuesday (-19,390)
15/3/1892. Tuesday (-19,411) The world’s first ‘escalator’ was installed at Coney Island, New York. This had a continuous sloping surface. It was called the ‘Reno inclined elevator’. The American inventor Charles A Wheeler patented the first escalator with flat steps on 2/8/1892.
21/1/1892, Thursday (-19,465) John Couch Adams, English astronomer associated with the discovery of the planet Neptune, died.
20/1/1892, Wednesday (-19,466) The game of basketball, devised by Canadian doctor James Naismith, was first played at the YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts.
18/1/1892, Monday (-19,468) Oliver Hardy, comedian in the Laurel and Hardy duo, was born in Atlanta, Georgia.
7/1/1892, Thursday (-19,479) Abbas II became the Khedive of Egypt (ruled to 1914).
3/1/1892. Sunday (-19,483) Author J.R.R.Tolkein, creator of The Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit, was born in Bloemfontein, Orange Free State, South Africa. He died in Bournemouth in 1973.
2/1/1892, Saturday (-19,484) Sir George Airy, Astronomer-Royal who modernised the Greenwich Observatory, died at Alnwick, Northumberland.
1/1/1892. Friday (-19,485) New York opened an immigration office on Ellis Island to cope with the flood of immigrants. Many were fleeing political and religious persecution in Russia and Central Europe. Named after Samuel Ellis, who owned the island in the 1770s, the new facility replaced older cramped facilities at The Battery on Manhattan Island.
10/12/1891, Thursday (-19,507) Earl Alexander, British Army Commander in North Africa, and Italy in World War II, was born in County Tyrone, Ireland.
5/12/1891, Saturday (-10,512) Pedro II, Emperor of Brazil, died.
15/11/1891. Sunday (-19,532) Birth of German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, commander of the Afrika Corps, in Heidenheim, Germany.
14/11/1891, Saturday (-19,533) Sir Frederick Banting, Canadian co-discoverer of insulin with McLeod and Best in 1922, was born in Alliston, Ontario.
28/10/1891, Wednesday (-19,550) A severe earthquake hit Osaka, Japan; 10,000 were killed.
20/10/1891, Tuesday (-19,558) Sir James Chadwick, who discovered the neutron in 1932, was born in Manchester.
8/10/1891. Thursday (-19,570) The first street collection for charity took place in Britain. It was on the streets of Manchester and Salford, for Lifeboat Day.
6/10/1891, Tuesday (-19,572) (1) Charles Stewart Parnell, Irish politician and campaigner for Home Rule, died in Brighton, Sussex.
(2) Death of W H Smith, the bookseller.
1/10/1891, Thursday (-19,577) The railway from Edmonton to Cheshunt via Turkey Street (Forty Hill) opened.
8/9/1891, Tuesday (-19,600)
28/8/1891, Friday (-16,611) (1) The West Hill Cliff Railway, Hastings, opened.
(2) Fighting near Valpariaso, Chile.
6/8/1891. Thursday (-19,633) The first traveller’s cheque, devised by American Express, was cashed.
31/7/1891. Friday (-19,639) Britain claimed African territory north of the Zambezi, up to the Congo basin, to be in its sphere of influence.
27/7/1891, Monday (-19,643) The Easingwold railway opened.
23/7/1891. Thursday (-19,647) Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, was born in Harar Province, as Tafari Makonnen. When the Italians invaded in 1936 he went into exile but resumed full authority after Ethiopia was liberated in 1941.
30/6/1891, Tuesday (-19,670)
23/6/1891, Tuesday (-19,677) The population of the London Borough of Hornsey was 61,097, up from 19,387 in 1871.
20/6/1891, Saturday (-19,680) John A Costello, Prime Minister of Ireland, was born.
6/6/1891, Saturday (-19,694) Sir John Alexander Macdonald, first Prime Minister of Canada, died.
28/5/1891, Thursday (-19,703) The first world weightlifting championships were held at the Cafe Monico in Piccadilly, London.
15/5/1891, Friday (-19,716) A Papal Encyclical urged employers to fulfil their moral duty to improve conditions for their workers.
6/5/1891. Wednesday (-19,725) The Triple Alliance between Germany, Austria, and Italy was renewed.
1/5/1891. Friday (-19,730) In a violent clash between striking French workers and French troops, nine workers, including two children, were killed as troops opened fire. 60 more workers were injured. The workers were campaigning for an 8 hour day.
24/4/1891, Wednesday (-10,737) Helmuth von Moltke, Prussian general, died.
23/4/1891, Thursday (-19,738) Sergei Prokofiev, Russian composer, was born in Sontsovka in the Ukraine.
15/4/1891. Wednesday (-19,746) Thomas Edison publicly demonstrated his ‘kinetoscope’, or moving picture machine, in New York.
7/4/1891, Tuesday (-19,754) (1) Ole Kirk Christiansen, Danish toymaker who invented Lego, was born.
(2) Phineas T Barnum, American circus showman, died aged 80.
18/3/1891, Wednesday (-19,774) The London-Paris telephone link opened. The first call was between the Prince of Wales and President Carnot. The link opened to the public on 1/4/1891.
15/3/1891, Sunday (-19,777) Sir Joseph William Bazalgette, engineer, died.
14/3/1891. Saturday (-19,778) The submarine Monarch laid the first telephone cable across the English Channel.
12/3/1892, Thursday (-19,780)
10/3/1891, Tuesday (-19,782) US undertaker Almon Brown Strowger patented the Strowger Switch, enabling automated dialling. He was motivated by the fact that the wife of a rival undertaker worked at the local phone exchange, and was diverting calls for his business to her husband.
9/3/1891, Monday (-19,783) An express train became trapped by heavy snow on Dartmoor, England, The passengers could not be rescued for four days, and the train eventually arrived in Plymouth eight days late.
1/3/1891, Sunday (-19,791)
14/2/1891, Saturday (-19,806) William Sherman, Union Army commander in the American Civil War, died in New York City.
13/2/1891, Friday (-19,807) Grant Wood, US painter, was born in Iowa.
20/1/1891, Tuesday (-19,831) King David Kalalahua of Hawaii died, age d54, and was succeeded by his 52-year sister, Queen Lydia Liliuokalani. White settlers who now owned 80% of the land in Hawaii, formed a Hawaiian League to oppose the accession of Queen Liliuokalani, and sought annexation to the USA.
11/1/1891, Sunday (-19,840) Baron Georges-Eugene Haussman, the architect who designed the broad straight boulevards of Paris, died in poverty.
1/1/1891, Thursday (-19,850) In Germany, Bismarck’s pension scheme came into operation. Pension age was 70. The rate was graduated with income, the lowest being 7 pfennings a week for those earning under 300 marks a year (£15).
29/12/1890. Monday (-19,853) The Battle of Wounded Knee in South Dakota. This was the last major conflict between Red Indians, the Sioux, and US troops.
18/12/1890, Thursday (-19,864) (1) Passenger services began on the City branch of the Northern Line, see 4/11/1890. Services ran from Stockwell to King William Street (now Bank).
(2) Passenger services began on the Harrow to Stanmore branch railway, north London. See 15/9/1952.
15/12/1890. Monday (-19,867) Chief Sitting Bull, Sioux leader (born ca.1831), was shot dead in a scuffle with police in South Dakota whilst resisting arrest. He had fled to Canada after his victory over General Custer at Little Bighorn in 1876. He returned to the USA in 1881 and was jailed for 2 years. He performed for several years with Buffalo Bill’s travelling Wild West Show, but the suffering of his people led him to join the new Ghost Dance Movement, dedicated to destroying the Whites and restoring the lost Indian world. The US Government sent troops to suppress the Ghost Dance Movement and arrest its leaders; Sitting Bull was shot in the skirmish.
29/11/1890, Saturday (-19,883) In Japan, the Meiji constitution came into effect.
23/11/1890, Sunday (-19,889) Death of King William III of the Netherlands (born 1817).
22/11/1890, Saturday (-19,890) Charles de Gaulle, French President, was born in Lille (died 1970).
21/11/1890, Friday (-19,891) The Lincoln Judgment, concerning the jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Canterbury, was delivered.
7/11/1890, Friday (-19,905) Zanzibar became a British Protectorate.
4/11/1890, Tuesday (-19,908) The first electrified underground railway system, what is now the City branch of the Northern Line, was officially opened by the Prince of Wales. Passenger services began on 18/12/1890.
14/10/1890. Tuesday (-19,929) Birth of US President Dwight Eisenhower. He was the 34th President, who led the US during World War Two, and was known as ‘Ike’. He was born in Denison, Texas (died 1969).
9/10/1890, Thursday (-19,934) Clement Ader, Frenchman, flew his monoplane, the Ecole, 165 feet. However it was not a truly sustained or controllable flight.
6/10/1890, Monday (-19,937) The Mormons in Utah renounced polygamy.
2/10/1890, Thursday (-19,941) Julius Groucho Marx was born (died 1977).
15/9/1890, Monday (-19,958) Agatha Christie, crime writer, was born in Torquay, Devon, as Agatha Mary Clarissa. She died on 12/1/1976.
12/9/1890. Friday (-19,961) The British South Africa Company founded the town of Salisbury, now Harare, after a pioneer march from South Africa. It was named after the British Prime Minister, Lord Salisbury.
9/8/1890, Saturday (-19,995) Heligoland was formally transferred from Britain to Germany.
6/8/1890. Wednesday (-19,998) In New York’s Auburn prison, the electric chair was used for the first time on the murderer William Kemmler.
5/8/1890. Tuesday (-19,999) Britain agreed to recognise Madagascar as a French colony and France recognised Zanzibar as a British protectorate. France gave up claims to the lower Niger and retained the desert territories of the Sahara.
29/7/1890. Tuesday (-20,006) Vincent Van Gogh, born 30/3/1853, died after prolonged insanity. He went to the spot where he had painted Cornfield with flight of birds and shot himself in the chest, on 27/7/1890, dying 2 days later.
21/7/1890, Monday (-20,014) (1) The railway from Bridgewater to Edington opened.
(2) Lord Rosebery opened Battersea Bridge.
17/7/1890. Thursday (-20,018) Cecil Rhodes became Prime Minister of the Cape Colony.
11/7/1890, Friday (-20,024) The first ever elections in Japan; the electorate comprised only 450,000 people.
10/7/1890. Thursday (-20,025) Wyoming was admitted as the 44th state of the USA.
5/7/1890, Saturday (-20,030)
3/7/1890, Thursday (-20,032) Idaho became the 43rd State of the Union.
2/7/1890. Wednesday (-20,033) (1) The US government passed the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, banning trade monopolies. With more than 90% of the US oil trade in the hands of the Rockerfeller family, and sugar, wheat, and alcohol prices also governed by mysterious ‘trusts’, the US government felt that these trusts threatened the economic structure of the USA. A judge, Mr Justice Harlan, said that these trusts were another form of slavery, as capital became concentrated in the hands of a few.
(2) In Brussels, an International Convention for Suppression of the African Slave Trade was signed.
1//7/1890. Tuesday (-20,034) Britain and Germany signed the Heligoland Treaty, by which Germany gave up claims in East Africa, including Zanzibar, in return for the British island of Heligoland in the Elbe estuary. Germany soon made Helogoland a major naval base for the defence of the newly constructed Kiel Canal.
16/6/1890. Monday (-20,049) Stan Laurel, of the Laurel and Hardy duo, was born as Arthur Stanley Jefferson in Ulverston, Lancashire (now Cumbria). Oliver Hardy was born in America on 18/1/1892.
2/6/1890, Monday (-20,963) The railway from St Budeaux (Plymouth) to Bere Alston opened.
1/6/1890, Sunday (-20,064) The US Census Bureau began using Herman Hollerith’s tabulating machine to count census returns. Hollerith’s company eventually became IBM.
19/5/1890, Monday (-20,077) (1) Birth of Ho Chi Minh, President of North Vietnam (died 1969).
(2) The Woodstock branch railway, Oxfordshire, opened.
12/5/1890, Monday (-20,084) In the UK, the first ever official County Championship cricket match began in Bristol. Yorkshire beat Gloucestershire by eight wickets.
7/5/1890, Wednesday (-20,089) James Nasmyth, inventor of the first steam hammer, died in London.
2/5/1890. Friday (-20,094) The Federal territory of Oklahoma was created; it was formerly known as the Indian Territory. On 22/4/1889 the US government, via a single shot fired at noon, had signalled the start of a great race for land by white settlers. An estimated 200,000 people crossed into the land once home to 75,000 Indians, who had to move on. By nightfall 22/4/1889 almost all of Oklahoma’s 2 million acres had been claimed.
21/4/1890, Monday (-20,105) The railway from Driffield to Market Weighton, Yorkshire, opened.
19/4/1890, Saturday (-20,107) The Lynton and Lynmouth Cliff Railway opened.
14/4/1890, Monday (-20,112) The Pan-American Union was established at the first International Congress of American States.
11/4/1890, Friday (-20,115) Birth of Donna Rachele Mussolini, wife of the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini (died 1979)
6/4/1890, Sunday (-20,120) Birth of Anthony Fokker, Dutch aircraft manufacturer (died 1939).
28/3/1890, Friday (-20,129) Washington State University was established in Pullman, Washington.
27/3/1890, Thursday (-20,130) Spain adopted universal (male) suffrage.
18/3/1890, Tuesday (-20,139) Prince Otto von Bismarck was dismissed from the German Chancellorship by Kaiser Wilhelm II, after 29 years as Germany’s first Chancellor. Bismarck’s foremost achievement had been the unification of Germany under Prussian leadership, but there had been increasing political dissent between Bismarck and Kaiser Wilhelm from 1888.
9/3/1890, Sunday (-20,148) Molotov, Soviet politician, was born in Kukaida under the surname Skriabin.
8/3/1890, Saturday (-20,149) North Dakota State University was founded in Fargo, North Dakota.
4/3/1890. Tuesday (-20,153) The 1,170 foot Forth Railway Bridge, the longest railway bridge so far built at 1,710 feet, was officially opened by the Prince of Wales. The bridge was designed and built by Benjamin Walker and John Fowler. 57 workers were killed during its construction. The bridge used 8 million rivets and 55,000 tons of steel.
17/2/1890, Monday (-20,168) Christopher Sholes, American inventor of the typewriter, died in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
10/2/1890, Monday (-20,175) Boris Pasternak, Russian writer, author of Dr Zhivago, was born in Moscow.
18/1/1890, Saturday (-20,198) Death of King Amadeus I of Spain (born 1845).
10/1/1890, Friday (-20,206) Cleopatra’s tomb was discovered.
1/1/1890, Wednesday (-20,215) The Kingdom of Italy established the colony of Eritrea in Africa.
6/12/1889, Friday (-20,241) Jefferson Davies, US President of the Confederate states, died aged 81.
2/12/1889, Monday (-20,245) The Malmesbury branch railway opened.
23/11/1889, Saturday (-20,254) The first jukebox was installed, in the Palais Royal Saloon in San Francisco.
15/11/1889, Friday (-20,262) Dom Pedro was dethroned as Emperor of Brazil, and a Republic proclaimed.
14/11/1889, Thursday (-20,263) Pandit Nehru, first Prime Minister of India, was born in Allahabad.
13/11/1889, Wednesday (-20,264)
12/11/1889, Tuesday (-20,265) Waterlow Park, Highgate, London, 29 acres, was given as a free gift to London by Sir Sidney Waterlow.
11/11/1889. Monday (-20,266) Washington became the 42nd State of the Union.
8/11/1889, Friday (-20,269) Montana became the 41st State of the Union.
2/11/1889, Saturday (-20,275) (1) Suffragettes Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton were arrested whilst attempting to vote in the national elections.
(2) North and South Dakota became the 39th and 40th States of the Union.
29/10/1889. Tuesday (-20,279) (1) Britain, Germany, Austria, France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Russia, and the Ottoman Empire signed an agreement that the Suez Canal was neutral and open in wartime as well as peacetime to all ships.
(2) Britain granted a charter to the British South Africa Company, under Cecil Rhodes, to colonise Bechuanaland and other parts of southern Africa.
19/10/1889, Saturday (-20,289) King Luis I of Portugal died aged 51 (born 1838). He was succeeded by his son, Carlos I, aged 26.
11/10/1889, Friday (-20,297) James Joule, who established the First Law of Thermodynamics, died.
6/10/1889, Sunday (-20,302) The Moulin Rouge cabaret opened in Paris.
2/10/1889, Wednesday (-20,306) the first Pan-American Congress met, in Washington. Its aim was to create closer relations between the States of the Americas.
1/10/1889, Tuesday (-20,307) In Essex, the railway from Wickford to Southend opened, see 1/1/1889.
23/9/1889, Monday (-20,315) The Nintendo Company was founded, as a playing card company.
16/9/1889, Monday (-20,322) The Somersham to Ramsey East railway opened.
2/9/1889, Monday (-20,336) The Netley to Fareham railway opened.
19/8/1889. Monday (-20,350) In London, a strike by 30,000 dock workers began. The strike ended on 14/9/1889 with victory for the dockworkers. They had won their claim for a pay rise from 5d to 6d an hour – the dockers’ tanner, also 8d an hour for overtime. The strike had major public support, over £50,000 being contributed to the strike fund, whilst dock owners found blackleg labour hard to come by. Even The City supported the strike, being opposed to casualisation of labour which was seen as penalising men who wanted to do an honest day’s work.
13/8/1889. Tuesday (-20,356) The coin operated phone was patented in the USA by William Gray of Hartford, Connecticut.
10/8/1889. Saturday (-20,359) The screw bottle top was patented by Dan Ryelands of Barnsley.
6/8/1889. Tuesday (-20,363) The Savoy Hotel in London was opened.
20/7/1889, Saturday (-20,380) The Freshwater, Yarmouth, and Newport Railway, Isle of Wight, 12 miles, opened to passengers.
8/7/1889, Monday (-20,392) (1) The Metropolitan Line, west London, was extended from Rickmansworth to Chesham, see 1/9/1887 and 1/9/1892.
(2) The Wall Street Journal was first published.
1/7/1889, Monday (-20,399) Steam services began on the Shipston on Stour railway. The Wickford to Southminster railway opened to passengers. The Barham to Canterbury railway opened.
22/6/1889. Saturday (-20,408) Bismarck’s government passed a bill for the welfare payment of old age pensions and sickness insurance.
12/6/1889, Wednesday (-20,418) A train crash in Armagh caused 80 deaths and 250 injured. As a result of this accident the Regulation of Railways Act 1889 was passed. This Act made block signalling, continuous brakes and interlocking points compulsory for rail companies.
3/6/1889, Monday (-20,427) (1) The first ‘long-distance’ electric power transmission line in the US was completed. It ran 14 miles from a generator at Williamette Falls to downtown Portland, Oregon.
(2) The District Line was extended from Putney Bridge to Wimbledon, west London.
31/5/1889. Friday (-20,430) Britain passed the Naval Defence Act in response to the growing naval power of both Russia and France.
25/5/1889, Saturday (-20,436) Igor Sikorsky, American engineer who pioneered the helicopter, was born in Kiev.
2/5/1889, Thursday (-20,459) Menelik II, Emperor of Ethiopia, signed a treaty of friendship with Italy, giving Italy full control over the territory of Eritrea.
1/5/1889. Wednesday (-20,460) Asa Briggs Candler of Atlanta bought the exclusive rights to a local drink called Coca Cola.
24/4/1889. Wednesday (-20,467) Sir Stafford Cripps, the Labour Chancellor who introduced austerity measures in Britain after the Second World War, was born.
22/4/1889, Monday (-20,469) The great land rush in the US, see 2/5/1890.
20/4/1889. Saturday (-20,471) Birth of Adolf Hitler, in Braunau, Austria (died 1945). His father was a customs official who changed his name from Schicklgruber.
16/4/1889. Tuesday (-20,475) Birth of the comedian Sir Charles Chaplin in Kennington, London (died 1977). He was the son of two music hall entertainers.
15/4/1889, Monday (-20,476) Thomas Hart Benton, US painter, was born in Neosho, Missouri.
4/4/1889, Thursday (-20,487) The Ronco rail tunnel, Italy, 8.5 km long, opened.
31/3/1889. Sunday (-20,491) The 300 metre Eiffel Tower was completed, in time for the Universal Exhibition in Paris, and opened by Premier Tirard on 6/5/1889. Many people said it was ugly.
23/3/1889, Saturday (-20,499) The Ahmadiyya Islamic Movement was founded by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in India.
18/3/1889, Monday (-20,504) Lavrenti Pavlovich Beria, Russian secret police chief from 1938 and one of the most feared men in the USSR until his execution in 1953, was born.
9/3/1889, Saturday (-20,513) King Yohannes IV was killed in the Battle of Metemma; Sudanese forces, almost routed, rallied and destroyed the Ethiopian Army.
4/3/1889, Monday (-20,518) Grover Cleveland, 22nd US President (1885-1889) was succeeded by Benjamin Harrison (1889 – 1893).
22/2/1889, Friday (-20,528) US President Grover Cleveland signed a Bill admitting North and South Dakota, Montana, and Washington, as US States.
11/2/1889. Monday (-20,539) The Meiji Emperor in Japan, dressed for the occasion in a European field-marshal’s uniform, took his seat on a Prussian armchair in the European-looking throne room of the palace of his new capital, Tokyo, and announced a new constitution providing for Japan’s first parliamentary elections. ‘Meiji’ denoted an Age of Brightness and it was hoped this would be the start of Japan as one of the great modern nations of the world. Japanese cities did indeed become more ‘modern’ and European; cinemas and dance halls appeared, frequented by ‘liberated’ young Japanese. However the constitution was based on a Prussian model, tied to the Confucian tradition of respect for authority, and the electorate was very limited; ministers were still picked by the emperor, not parliament. Japan remained a nation where the emperor and the military had most of the real power, leading ultimately to its participation in the Second World War. Some see 1964, when the Olympics were held in Tokyo, as the turning point when the war and US occupation were put behind and Japan became a ‘western’ nation.
10/2/1889, Sunday (-20,540) The Church of England approved the use of the revised Bible.
10/1/1889. Thursday (-20,571) France declared a protectorate over the Ivory Coast.
8/1/1889. Tuesday (-20,573) The first electric computer for data processing was patented by Dr Herman Hollerith in New York. The company Dr Hollerith formed to market his invention became the giant IBM. Charles Babbage had designed and partially built a mechanical ‘Analytical Engine’ between 1821 and 1871. The 1889 computer was designed to compute the results of the 1890 census, using punched cards. The first electronic computer was built secretly at Bletchley Park; it began operations in December 1943 to crack the German Enigma codes. It worked with punched tape and could scan and analyse 5,000 characters a second. In 1946 the US military developed the first all-purpose, i.e. programmable, electronic computer. Called ENIAC, it weighed 30 tons and contained some 18,000 vacuum tubes. It was used for calculating trajectories of artillery shells, accounting for variables like wind velocity, air temperature, and type of shell.
1/1/1889, Tuesday (-20,580) (1) The State of New York adopted the electric chair for capital punishment.
(2) In Essex, the railway from Shenfield to Wickford opened to passengers, see 1/10/1889.
23/12/1888. Sunday (-20,589) (1) The film magnate J Arthur Rank was born. Born in Hull, England, he was born into a Yorkshire flour milling family. He entered the film business in his mid 30s, seeing it as a way to propagate his Methodist faith. He failed to secure distribution for a religious film called The Turn of the Tide and so began his own production, distribution, and exhibition of films in 1933. By the 1940s the Rank Organisation owned half the film studios in Britain and over 1,000 cinemas, including the well-known Odeon chain. However Rank failed to establish Britain as a rival to Hollywood. The Rank Organisation survives but withy films as a secondary interest behind hotels, real estate, ballrooms, bingo, and, most profitable of all, copying machines.
(2) The artist Vincent Van Gogh cut off his left ear lobe.
20/12/1888, Thursday (-20,592) The Battle of Suakin.
23/11/1888, Friday (-20,619) Harpo Marx, one of the Marx Brothers comedy team, was born in New York City.
9/11/1888, Friday (-20,633) Mary Kelly, fifth and last of The Ripper’s victims, was found dead in her room at 13 Millers Court, London.
7/11/1888, Wednesday (-20,635) Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman was born. In 1931 he won the Nobel Physics Prize for his discovery of the changing wavelengths of light when it passed through a transparent material.
31/10/1888. Wednesday (-20,642) Pneumatic bicycle tyres (see 10/12/1845) were patented by the Scottish inventor John Royd Dunlop.
30/10/1888, Tuesday (-20,643) The first patent for a ball point pen was issued to the American, John H Loud.
25/10/1888, Thursday (-20,648) Richard Byrd, US naval officer and polar explorer, was born in Winchester, Virginia.
9/10/1888, Tuesday (-20,664) The 555-foot high white marble Washington Monument was opened. It was designed by Robert Mills.
1/10/1888, Monday (-20,674) The railway from St Johns, SE London, through Blackheath Hill to Greenwich, opened.
30/9/1888. Sunday (-20,673) Jack the Ripper butchered 2 more women. They were Liz Stride found behind 40 Berber
Street, and Kate Eddowes, in Miter Square, both in London’s East End.
29/9/1888, Saturday (-20,675)
27/9/1888. Thursday (-20,676) The Central London News Agency received a letter which began ‘Dear Boss, I keep on
hearing the police have caught me but they won’t fix me just yet..’. It was signed ‘Jack the Ripper’
the first time the name had been used.
26/9/1888. Wednesday (-20,677) The poet T S Eliot was born – see 4/1/1965.
19/9/1888. Wednesday (-20,684) The world’s first beauty contest took place at Spa, Belgium. The winner was 18-year-old Bertha Soucaret from Guadeloupe, who won a 5,000 Franc prize.
8/9/1888, Saturday (-20,695) Jack the Ripper claimed his 2nd victim, Annie Chapman, who was found disembowelled at 29 Hanbury Street, London.
4/9/1888, Tuesday (-20,699) George Eastman, founder of the Kodak film company, patented the first camera film roll.
31/8/1888, Friday (-20,703) Mary Ann ‘Polly’ Nichols, the first victim of Jack the Ripper, was found mutilated in Bucks Row in the early hours of the morning.
15/8/1888, Wednesday (-20,719) T E (Thomas Edward) Lawrence, British soldier and writer known as Lawrence of Arabia, was born at Tremadoc, Wales.
13/8/1888. Monday (-20,721) Birth of television pioneer John Logie Baird in Helensburgh, Firth of Clyde, Scotland.
12/8/1888, Sunday (-20,722) (1) An airship designed by the German, Karl Woelfort, was tested with a Daimler petrol engine. The invention of a light yet powerful engine, along with the invention in 1886 of a method of mass producing the lightweight metal aluminium (using electrolysis) meant that practical steerable airships, or dirigibles, were now possible.
(2) The railway from Budapest to Constantinople opened.
6/8/1888. Monday (-20,728) Elected County Councils were established in Britain through the local Government Act.
22/7/1888, Sunday (-20,743) Selman Abraham Waksman, Russian microbiologist whose search for antimicrobial substances in soil led to the discovery of actinomycin and streptomycin, was born.
14/7/1888. Saturday (-20,751) Businessman Jesse L Lippincott founded the world’s first record company, the North American Phonograph Company, in Pennsylvania.
9/7/1888, Monday (-20,756) Simon Marks, British retailer, was born in Leeds.
29/6/1888, Friday (-20,766) The first appendectomy was carried out in the UK, at the London Hospital by Professor Frederick Treves.
15/6/1888, Friday (-20,780) Frederick III, Emperor of Germany, died. He was succeeded by his 29-year son, Wilhelm II, who was the last German monarch.
16/5/1888, Wednesday (-20,810) Emile Berliner demonstrated the first gramophone, to the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.
13/5/1888. Sunday (-20,813) Slavery was abolished in Brazil despite heavy opposition from the landowners. Brazil had agreed to abolish the slave trade, under pressure from Britain, in 1831, but this trade did not cease completely in Brazil until 1853. In the 1860s there was pressure to abolish all slavery in Brazil, and in 1871 the Brazilian parliament passed a law that all children of slave mothers were free. In 1884 Cearas and Amazonas freed their slaves, and in 1885 all Brazilian slaves aged over 65 were freed. Complete emancipation without compensation to landowners was decreed on 13/5/1888 and about 700,000 slaves valued at £40 million were freed.
12/5/1888. Saturday (-20,814) Britain established a protectorate over North Borneo.
11/5/1888, Friday (-20,815) Irving Berlin, US songwriter, was born as Israel Baline in Tyumen, Russia.
7/5/1888. Monday (-20,819) George Eastman, a former bank clerk aged 34 (see 12/7/1854), founded the Kodak photographic company. He chose the name Kodak because he thought it would be easy to remember.
17/4/1888, Tuesday (-20,839) The first formal meeting of the UK Football league took place in the Royal Hotel, Manchester.
22/3/1888. Thursday (-20,865) The English Football League was founded by 12 clubs meeting in Anderton’s Hotel, Fleet Street, London.
17/3/1888. Saturday (-20,870) Britain established a protectorate over Sarawak in the Malaysian archipelago.
16/3/1888, Friday (-20,871) In France, Emile Roger made the first recorded purchase of a motor car, a Benz.
13/3/1888, Tuesday (-20,874) Volcanic eruption on Ritter Island (New Guinea), causing a large tsunami and obliterating most of the island itself.
11/3/1888, Sunday (-20,876) A great blizzard began in the USA.
9/3/1888, Friday (-20,878) Death of Kaiser Wilhelm I of Prussia, aged 90. He was succeeded by his 57-year old son, Friedrich Wilhelm, but he died of cancer later in the year, on 15/6/1888.
1/3/1888, Thursday (-20,886) The railway from Weedon to Daventry opened.
27/2/1888, Monday (-20,889) As Italian-French relations deteriorated, France imposed selective duties against Italian products. Italy retaliated in kind on 1/3/1888.
30/1/1888, Monday (-20,917) Edward Lear, English author and artist, who wrote the Book of Nonsense, died in San Remo, Italy.
18/1/1888. Wednesday (-20,929) Birth of aviation pioneer Sir Thomas Sopwith.
3/1/1888, Tuesday (-20,944) Herbert Morison, Labour politician, was born in Lambeth, London.
30/12/1887, Friday (-20,948) A petition signed by over one million women was presented to Queen Victoria, asking for pubs to be closed on Sundays. The petition failed.
25/12/1887, Sunday (-20,953) Conrad Hilton, American hotelier, was born in San Antonio, New Mexico.
23/11/1887. Wednesday (-20,985) Violence erupted in a sugar cane workers strike in Louisiana, and at least 20 Black people were killed.
17/11/1887, Thursday (-20,991) Viscount Montgomery, World War Two army commander who defeated Rommel in Africa in World War Two, was born in Kensington, London, the son of a vicar.
15/11/1887, Tuesday (-20,993) Georgia O’Keefe, artist, was born in Wisconsin.
13/11/1887, Sunday (-20,995) Bloody Sunday in Trafalgar Square, London, when police clashed with Socialist demonstrators. The protestors were calling for the end of a ban on open air meetings and the release of an Irish MP who had been jailed for supporting a rent strike. Two protestors were killed.
11/11/1887, Friday (-20,997) The first sod of the Manchester Ship Canal was cut.
6/11/1887, Sunday (-21,002) Celtic Football Club., Glasgow, was founded, to help the poor of Glasgow’s East End.
1/11/1887, Tuesday (-21,007) The artist L S (Laurence Stephen) Lowry was born in Rusholme, Manchester.
31/10/1887, Monday (-21,008) Chiang Kai-Shek, Chinese military leader and politician, was born in Fenghua, Chekiang province.
14/10/1887, Friday (-21,025)
6/10/1887, Thursday (-21,033) Le Corbusier, who promoted the idea of a house as a ‘,machine for living’, was born in Switzerland.
1/10/1887. Saturday (-21,038) The British in India annexed Baluchistan, an area strategic to the North-West Frontier.
26/9/1887, Monday (-21, 043) (1) The first gramophone player, invented by Emile Berliner, a German immigrant living in Washington DC, was patented.
(2) Barnes Wallis, inventor of the bouncing bomb used in World war two, and inventor and designer of aircraft, was born.
5/9/1887, Monday (-21,064) The Alnwick to Coldstream railway opened to passengers.
1/9/1887, Thursday (-21,068) The Metropolitan Line, London, was extended from Pinner to Rickmansworth, see 25/5/1885 and 8/7/1889.
18/7/1887, Monday (-21,113) Vidkun Quisling, Norwegian diplomat who turned traitor, was born in Fyresdal, Telemark province, southern Norway.
17/7/1887, Friday (-21,116) Dorothy Lynde Dix, pioneer in the humane treatment of the mentally disabled in the US (born 4/4/1802 in Hampden, Maine), died in Trenton, New Jersey.
14/7/1887, Thursday (-21,117) Alfred Krupp, German manufacturer of arms in Essen, the Ruhr, died.
21/6/1887, Tuesday (-21,140) Queen Victoria’s Jubilee celebrations.
20/6/1887. Monday (-21,141) Queen Victoria met Annie Oakley, the famous American markswoman who could slice a playing card in two at 30 paces sideways on.
19/6/1887, Sunday (-21,142)
18/6/1887, Saturday (-21,143) Hammersmith Bridge, London, was opened.
17/6/1887, Friday (-21,144) Mark Hopkins, US philosopher, died in Williamstown, Massachusetts.
3/6/1887, Friday (-21,158) The foundation stone of the opening lock of the Kiel Canal was laid.
27/5/1887, Friday (-21,165) The Bodmin Road to Bodmin railway opened.
26/5/1887. Thursday (-21,166) The Imperial British East Africa Company received a charter to colonise Kenya and Uganda.
23/5/1887. Monday (-21,169) (1) The Canadian Pacific Railway reached Vancouver.
(2) The French crown jewels went on sale and raised six million francs.
9/5/1887, Monday (-21,183) The Helston branch line, Cornwall, opened.
27/4/1887, Wednesday (-21,195) The first appendix operation, for removing an infected appendix, was carried out by George Thomas Morton on a 26-year-old man with acute appendicitis, in Philadelphia, USA.
20/4/1887. Wednesday (-21,202) The world’s first motor race took place, along the banks of the River Seine from the centre of Paris to Neuilly. There was only one entrant, Georges Bouton, who completed the course in his steam quadricycle to become the winner.
4/4/1887, Monday (-21,218) Susanna Salter became the world’s first woman mayor. She was elected at Argona, Kansas.
4/3/1887, Friday (-21,249) The first Daimler cars appeared on the road.
28/2/1887, Monday (-21,253) Alexander Borodin, Russian composer, died in St Petersburg.
24/2/1887, Thursday (-21,257) The telephone link between Paris and Brussels was inaugurated, the first such link between national capitals.
16/2/1887, Wednesday (-21,265) Queen Victoria’s Jubilee was marked in India by the freeing of 25,000 prisoners.
8/2/1887. Tuesday (-21,273) The USA passed an Act allowing the President to overrule Indian governments and sell traditional communally-owned tribal lands to private owners.
29/1/1887, Saturday (-21,283) Construction work began on the Eiffel Tower, Paris.
22/1/1887, Saturday (-21,290) Sir Joseph Whitworth, the engineer who standardised screw threads, died at Monte Carlo.
20/1/1887. Thursday (-21,292) (1) A renewal of the reciprocity agreement between the USA and Hawaii contained an amendment giving the USA exclusive rights to a coaling station in Pearl Harbour.
(2) New Zealand annexed the Kermadec Islands.
14/1/1887. Friday (-21,298) Bismarck dissolved the Reichstag because it refused to vote for the military budget.
1/1/1887, Saturday (-21,311) Queen Victoria was proclaimed Empress of India in Delhi.
9/12/1886, Thursday (-21,334) Clarence Birdseye, US inventor of a process for deep-freezing foodstuffs, was born in New York City.
18/11/1886, Thursday (-21,355) Chester Alun Arthur, American Republican and 21st President from 1881 to 1885, died in New York City.
7/11/1886. Sunday (-21,366)
29/10/1886, Friday (-21,375) James Hannington, first Bishop of Eastern Equatorial Africa, was murdered.
28/10/1886, Thursday (-21,376) The Statue of Liberty in New York was unveiled by President Grover Cleveland. It was presented by France to mark the 100th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, and designed by the French sculptor Auguste Bartholdi; it took more than nine years to complete.
16/10/1886, Saturday (-21,388) David Ben Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israeli in 1948, was born in Plonsk, Poland, as David Green. He changed his name to Ben Gurion because of its Biblical connotations.
10/10/1886. Sunday (-21,394) The dinner jacket made its first appearance in public when it was worn by its creator at a ball in the Tuxedo Park Country Club, New York. Hence it was later known as the Tuxedo.
7/10/1886, Thursday (-21,397) Spain abolished slavery in Cuba.
20/9/1886. Monday (-21,414) The city of Johannesburg was founded.
8/9/1886, Wednesday (-21,426) Thousands flocked to Witwatersrand, South Africa, as public gold digging was permitted.
4/9/1886. Saturday (-21,430) The Apache chief Geronimo surrendered to General Nelson Miles of the US army. He was born in what is now New Mexico in 1829. After returning home to find his wife and three children murdered by Spanish troops from Mexico he terrorized European settlements. He was the leader of the last American Indian force to surrender, and had outwitted the US army with its superior numbers for 10 years. His ten years of guerrilla action was intended to deter white settlers from New Mexico and Arizona. He died a prisoner in 1909, unable to return to his homeland, and was buried in the Apache cemetery at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.
1/9/1886, Wednesday (-21,433) In Britain the railway tunnel under the Severn Estuary, 7 km long, opened to regular train services. It was then the world’s longest underwater tunnel. The railway from Crymmych Arms to Cardigan opened.
31/7/1886. Saturday (-21,465) Franz Liszt, Hungarian composer, died aged 74, in Bayreuth, Bavaria.
26/7/1886. Monday (-21,470) William Gladstone was replaced by Lord Salisbury following defeat of the Irish Home Rule Bill.
23/7/1886, Friday (-21,473) Birth of Sir Arthur Brown, future co-pilot in the first ever trans-Atlantic flight.
21/7/1886, Wednesday (-21,475) The railway from Hallwell to Launceston, Cornwall, 14 miles, opened.
6/7/1886. Tuesday (-21,490) Box numbers were used in advertisements for the first time, by the Daily Telegraph.
3/7/1886, Saturday (-21,493) The first successful petrol powered car made its first public run at Mannheim, Germany. Designed by Karl Benz, it travelled half a mile at 9mph.
29/6/1886, Tuesday (-21,497) Robert Schuman, French politician and Prime Minister, was born in Luxembourg.
28/6/1886, Monday (-21,498) The first through train for the Pacific left Montreal.
15/5/1886, Tuesday (-21,511) Emily Dickinson, US poet, died in Amherst, Massachusetts.
13/6/1886, Sunday (-21,513) Ludwig II, King of Bavaria, drowned, probably suicide.
4/5/1886, Tuesday (-21,553) The Haymarket Square Riot in Chicago. A bomb exploded at a trades union rally, killing 7 policemen and injuring 70 other people. Four people were executed by the State of Illinois, and the incident greatly eroded public support for the trades union movement.
1/5/1886. Saturday (-21,556) Over 100,000 workers across the USA went on strike for an 8 hour day. A bomb thrown by Anarchists in Chicago on 4/5/1886 killed 7 police and strikers and injured 60 more. The perpetrator was never found but a judge ruled that seven who had incited the event were as guilty and sentenced them to death. One committed suicide, four were executed, and two had their sentences commuted.
1/4/1886, Thursday (-21,586) The spur line from Hounslow Town to Osterley closed, see 21/7/1884 and 2/5/1909.
29/3/1886. Monday (-21,589) Coca-cola, invented by Dr John S Pemberton of Atlanta, Georgia, was launched as an ‘esteemed brain tonic and intellectual beverage’. Claimed to cure almost anything from hysteria to the common cold, the beverage faced competition from drinks such as Imperial Inca Cola.
27/3/1886, Saturday (-21,591) Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, architect, was born in Aachen, Germany.
10/3/1886, Wednesday (-21,608) The first Cruft’s dog show in London took place; the first ever Cruft’s was in 1859 in Newcastle on Tyne.
22/2/1886, Monday (-21,624) The Times became the first newspaper to have a ‘personal’ column on its classified page.
8/2/1886, Monday (-21,638) Unemployed people protested in London’s Trafalgar Square; there was looting and rioting in Pall Mall and Oxford Street.
6/2/1886. Saturday (-21,640) An English carpenter, George Walker, discovered gold in the Transvaal, South Africa. Whilst digging the foundations for a cottage for a gold prospector, his shovel uncovered a seam of gold; specks of the metal had been found in rivers for the past 30 years but geologists now believed the Witwatersrand Ridge, in the Boer Republic, contained large gold fields. Boers feared a large influx of foreigners.
1/2/1886, Monday (-21,645) William Gladstone resumed office as Prime Minister.
29/1/1886. Friday (-21,648) Karl Benz patented the first practical car with a petrol-driven internal combustion engine. It had three rubber tyres and went at 9.3 mph.
28/1/1886, Thursday (-21,649) The Marquess of Salisbury left office as Prime Minister.
20/1/1886, Wednesday (-21,657) The Mersey rail tunnel was formally opened by the Prince of Wales, at James Street station. Begun in 1881, it is 1,100 metres long.
1/1/1886, Friday (-21,676) The British seized Upper Burma.
20/12/1885, Sunday (-21,688) The trial of Proletariat Party members in Poland ended (began 23/11/1885). The trial produced the first socialist martyrs; the Russian Piotr Bardovsky, also Stanislaw Kunicki, Michal Ossowski (shoemaker), and Jan Petrusinski (weaver) were hanged on 28/1/1886. Warysnki was also found guilty, and died in the Schlusselberg fortress in St Petersburg in 1889. Maria Bohuszewicz took over leadership of the Party and was herself condemned to exile; she died on the way to Siberia. Stefan Ulrych became the next leader, and was sentenced to exile in Siberia in 1888. Marcin Kasprzak and Ludwik Kulczycki became the next leaders. The movement laid the foundations of Polish socialism.
28/11/1885, Saturday (-21,710) The British entered Mandalay.
24/11/1885, Tuesday (-21,714) Alphonso XII of Spain died of tuberculosis, aged 27. He was later succeeded by his posthumous son, Alphonso XIII.
23/11/1885, Monday (-21,715) The (political) trial of Proletariat Party members in Poland began.
20/11/1885, Friday (-21,718) Albert Kesselring, German Air Force Commander, was born in Markstedt.
16/11/1885, Monday (-21,722) Louis Riel, leader of the Canadian Metis Rebellion, was hanged by the British.
11/11/1885, Wednesday (-21,727) George Patton, US military commander in World War Two, was born in San Gabriel, California.
9/11/1885, Monday (-21,729) The Abbotsbury branch line opened.
7/11/1885, Saturday (-21,731) The last spikes were driven in at Craigellachie in British Columbia, completing the Canadian Pacific Railway after 4 ½ years work. The Government of British Columbia had stipulated that they would only join the Canadian federation, rather than the USA, if they were connected by railway to the rest of Canada by 1891. Trains running from Montreal to Port Moody, capital of British Columbia from 1886, took 5 to 6 days.
2/11/1885, Monday (-21,736) The railway from Staines to Colnbrook, west London, was opened, see 9/8/1884.
2/10/1885, Friday (-21,767) The Horsham to Guildford railway opened.
25/9/1885. Friday (-21,774) The earliest recorded winter snowfall occurred in London.
18/9/1885, Friday (-21,781) Eastern Rumelia, formerly a province of Turkey, proclaimed its unity with Bulgaria to its north.
10/9/1885. Thursday (-21,789) The town of Stafford, Kansas, was officially incorporated as such. The boundaries of Stafford County were fixed by the US legislature in 1868, and was named in honour of Lewis Stafford, a Civil War soldier who was killed ion the Battle of Young’s Point. For several years the county had no permanent settlers, but was inhabited by buffalo hunters, cowboys, and surveyors. The first permanent inhabitants arrived in May 1874. Early industries included the gathering of buffalo hides and bones left by earlier settlers; buffalo bones fetched US$3-US$9 a ton. Many of the first houses were made of earth, or sod, hence the first town here was called ‘Sod-Town’, renamed Stafford in 1885.
4/9/1885. Friday (-21,795) The world’s first cafeteria opened, in New York.
29/8/1885. Saturday (-21,801) Gottlieb Daimler in Germany patented the first motorcycle, a wooden bicycle frame with a single cylinder engine..
15/8/1885, Saturday (-21,815) Sir Montague Burton, owner of a multiple chain of clothes shops, was born to Jewish parents in Lithuania.
10/8/1885, Monday (-21,820) (1) The first electric street car railway in the US was opened in Baltimore by Leo Daft.
(2) The Croydon to Woodside railway, south London, opened.
1/8/1885, Saturday (-21,829) The Marianopoli rail tunnel, Italy, 6.9 km long, opened.
27/7/1885, Monday (-21,834) The railway from Gloucester to Ledbury, Gloucestershire opened.
23/7/1885, Thursday (-21,838) Ulysses Grant, American commander of the Union Army, Republican politician and 18th President from 1869 to 1877, died of cancer in Mount McGregor, near Saratoga, New York State.
20/7/1885, Monday (-21,841) Professional football was legalised in England.
6/7/1885. Monday (-21,855) Louis Pasteur, 63, administered his first successful treatment of rabies with anti rabies vaccine made from a weakened rabies virus..
1/7/1885, Wednesday (-21,860) The sovereignty of King Leopold I of Belgium over The Congo was proclaimed.
23/6/1885, Tuesday (-21,868) The Marquess of Salisbury took up post as Prime Minister.
19/6/1885. Friday (-21,872) The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York from France. The statue was dedicated to the US-France friendship on 28/10/1886 by President Cleveland. The Statue was 300 foot high, of a woman holding a tablet with the date 4 July 1776 on it. The 225 ton structure made of hand-hammered copper sheet on a steel frame was assembled in France then dismantled and shipped to the USA.
9/6/1885, Tuesday (-21,882) William Gladstone left office as Prime Minister.
1/6/1885, Monday (-21,890) The Ardrossan to Largs railway opened.
25/5/1885, Monday (-21,897) London’s Metropolitan Line opened as far west as Pinner. See 1/9/1887.
22/5/1885, Friday (-21,900) Victor Hugo, French poet and novelist, author of Les Miserables, died in Paris aged 83.
20/5/1885, Wednesday (-21,902) The Swanage branch railway opened.
4/5/1885, Monday (-21,918) The railway from Newbury to Winchester opened.
1/5/1885, Friday (-21,921) The railway from Tiverton to Exeter opened.
29/4/1885, Wednesday (-21,923) Oxford University allowed women to sit its examinations.
1/4/1885, Wednesday (-21,951) The Fordham to Mildenhall railway opened.
26/3/1885, Thursday (-21,957) The first cremation in modern times, of Mrs Pickersgill, took place at Woking.
11/3/1885, Wednesday (-21,972) Sir Malcolm Campbell, British holder of the world land and sea speed records, was born.
26/2/1885, Thursday (-21,985) A meeting of 15 nations in Berlin hosted by Bismark divided up east and central Africa amongst European countries.
24/2/1885, Tuesday (-21,987) Chester Nimitz, American admiral and commander in the Pacific during World War II, was born in Fredericksburg, Texas.
2/2/1885, Monday (-22,009) The railway from Surbiton to Guildford via Effingham Junction opened. Leatherhead to Horsley opened.
26/1/1885. Monday (-22,016) General Gordon, British commander and Governor of the Sudan, was killed by a spear whilst besieged by the Mahdis at Khartoum. Two days after the city fell, a relief force under General Wolseley arrived.
17/1/1885. Saturday (-22,025) British forces marching to relieve General C G Gordon at Khartoum were attacked by the Mahdists, at Abu Klea, but repelled them. Khartoum fell to the Mahdis on 26/1/1885.
2/1/1885, Friday (-22,040) A further terrorist attack on the London Underground, by Irish Republicans. James Canningham set a bomb off in the tunnel between Kings Cross and Gower Street (now Euston) stations; only slight damage to a train was caused. Later that month, he was seen detonating a bomb which seriously injured four people at the Tower of London, and was sentenced to life imprisonment with hard labour. Bomb attacks by these so called ‘dyamitards’ tailed off after others were caught or blew themselves up.
6/12/1884, Saturday (-22,067) The Franchise Act, or Third Parliamentary Reform Act was passed, giving almost all adult males the vote. However domestic servants, bachelors living with their parents, and those of no fixed address were still voteless. This measure increased the electoral roll by some 2 million, four times the number added in 1832.
25/11/1884, Tuesday (-22,078) John Mayenberg of St Louis, Missouri, patented evaporated milk.
17/11/1884. Monday (-22,086) Chinese Turkestan was given provincial status, and renamed Xinjiang, or New Frontier.
1/11/1884. Saturday (-22,102) (1) Gaelic Football was standardised, with the formation of the Gaelic Athletics Association in Thurles, Ireland.
(2) Lloyds Register of Shipping was first published.
13/10/1884. Monday (+22,121) Greenwich was adopted as the universal time meridian from which world longitude is calculated.
11/10/1884, Saturday (-22,123) Eleanor Roosevelt, wife and cousin of Franklin D Roosevelt, was born in New York City.
1/10/1884, Wednesday (-22,133) The railway from Melton Constable to Holt opened.
20/9/1884, Saturday (-22,144) The Arlberg rail tunnel, Austria, 11 km long, opened.
15/9/1884, Monday (-22,149) The first railway in Serbia opened; Belgrade to Nish, 151 miles.
9/8/1884, Saturday (-22,186) The railway from West Drayton to Colnbrook, west London, was opened, see 2/11/1885.
1/8/1884. Friday (-22,194) (1) The Morebath Junction to Tiverton railway opened.
(2) King Leopold of Belgium formally proclaimed the Congo Free State today as a Belgian colony, following the concessions made by other European powers to him at Berlin in February 1884.
21/7/1884, Monday (-22,205) In west London, the railway from Osterley to Hounslow West opened, see 1/5/1883 and 1/4/1886.
16/7/1884, Wednesday (-22,210) The railway from Scarborough to Whitby, 20 ½ miles, opened.
8/7/1884. Tuesday (-22,218) The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children was founded in London.
5/7/1884, Saturday (-22,221) The German Consulate at Tunis formally proclaimed that Togo was a German protectorate.
4/7/1884, Friday (-22,222) The Statue of Liberty was formally presented to US Minister Morton by Frenchman Ferdinand de Lesseps.
1/7/1884, Tuesday (-22,225) The Maidstone to Ashford railway, Kent, opened to passengers.
28/6/1884, Saturday (-22,228) The Saltburn Cliff Railway opened.
16/6/1884, Monday (-22,240) The first purpose-built roller coaster, the Switchback railway, opened at Coney Island, New York.
2/6/1884, Monday (-22,254) The railway from Cambridge to Fordham opened.
28/5/1884, Wednesday (-22,259) Eduard Benes, Czech politician and founder of modern Czechoslovakia, was born in Kozlany, Bohemia.
21/5/1884, Wednesday (-22,266) The Statue of Liberty was completed. Work on it was begun in 1874 by Auguste Bartholdi, in Paris.
13/5/1884, Tuesday (-22,274) Cyrus Hall McCormick, inventor of the first successful reaping machine, died in Chicago.
12/5/1884, Monday (-22,275) Bohemian composer Bedrich Smetana died in an asylum for the insane.
8/5/1884, Thursday (-22,279) Harry S Truman, American Democrat and 33rd President, was born in Lamar, Missouri. He ordered the atom bomb to be dropped on Japan in 1945.
24/4/1884. Thursday (-22,293) Bismarck cabled Cape Town to state that South West Africa was a German colony. On 11/7/1884 Germans began to sign up Cameroon chiefs as subjects. On 17/2/1885 Germany established a protectorate over the Tanganyika coast.
22/4/1884. Tuesday (-22,295) A great earthquake hit Colchester and parts of East Anglia. 1,200 buildings were damaged, and 4 people killed.
16/4/1884, Wednesday (-22,301) The siege of Khartoum by the Mahdi began, see 26/1/1885.
5/4/1884, Saturday (-22,312) John Wisden, cricketer and compiler of Wisden record books, died in London.
4/4/1884. Friday (-22,313) By the Treaty of Valparaiso, Bolivia granted Chile the right to control Antofagasta, including the Atacama Desert.
29/3/1884, Saturday (-22,319) At the Battle of El Teb, or Trinkitat, British forces defeated the Mahdi in Sudan.
13/3/1884, Thursday (-22,335) (1) Standard time zones were established in the USA.
(2) At the Battle of Tamai, British forces defeated the Mahdi in Sudan.
10/3/1884, Monday (-22,338)The South Croydon to East Grinstead via Oxted railway, also Oxted to Eridge, opened.
18/2/1884. Monday (-22,359) General Gordon, sent by the British to evacuate Khartoum, decided to stay there.
8/2/1884, Friday (-22,369), King Cetywayo, former ruler of the Zulus, died, see 29/1/1883.
1/2/1884. Friday (-22,376) The first volume of the Oxford English Dictionary, A – Ant, was published.
31/1/1884. Thursday (-22,377) The Russians seized the town of Merv in Turkmenistan, near a disputed area of Afghan border territory, alarming the British.
28/1/1884, Monday (-22,380) The first Ireland versus Scotland football international took place at Belfast; Scotland won 5 – 0.
6/1/1884, Sunday (-22,402) Gregor Mendel, Augustine monk and botanist who pioneered the study of genetics, died in Brunn, Austria, aged 62.
4/1/1884. Friday (-22,404) The Fabian Society was founded, to promote socialist ideals.
4/12/1883, Tuesday (-22,435) The International Exhibition at Calcutta opened, the first exhibition to be held in India.
3/12/1883, Monday (-22,436) The Whitby to Loftus railway opened.
3/11/1883 Saturday (-22,466) Anglo-Egyptian forces under General Hicks were heavily defeated by Mahdist forces, causing a British withdrawal from the Sudan.
30/10/1883, Tuesday (-22,470) (London, Ireland) The first terrorist attack on the London Underground. Two bombs were set off by Fenian fighters for Irish independence, one at Praed Street Station (now Paddington) on a Metropolitan Line train going towards Edgware Road, and one on a District Line train between Westminster and Charing Cross (now Embankment). Nobody was killed and there were only slight injuries from flying glass. The perpetrators were never found. In February 1884 more serious bomb attacks were attempted, with devices planted at Victoria, Charing Cross,, Ludgate Hill and Paddington. Fortunately only the Victoria bomb exploded and as the station was nearly empty at the time nobody was killed. Again the bombers were never discovered. Other terrorist plans of the time included an attempt to blow up Scotland Yard., by Clan na Gael. Some damage was done, with records on Irish Republicans destroyed, but had all the dymanite detonated the building would have been totally destroyed.
24/10/1883, Wednesday (-22,476) The new University of South Wales and Monmouth opened.
23/10/1883, Tuesday (-22,477) The Metropolitan Opera House in New York opened.
22/10/1883, Monday (-22,478) The Chilean occupation of Lima, Peru, ended, see 17/1/1881.
20/10/1883. Saturday (-22,480) The Treaty of Ancon finally ended the war between Chile, Peru, and Bolivia, for land in the Atacama Desert, which was rich in nitrates. By the treaty, Peru ceded Tarapaca to Chile, and Chile also kept Tacna and Arica for ten years.
17/10/1883, Wednesday (-22,483) The Ben Nevis observatory was opened.
15/10/1883, Monday (-22,485) The Palace of Justice opened in Brussels.
6/10/1883, Saturday (-22,494) The Orient Express made its maiden run from Paris to Constantinople (Istanbul) in just under 78 hours.
4/10/1883, Thursday (-22,496) Sir William Alexander Smith founded the Boys Brigade in Glasgow.
3/10/1883, Wednesday (-22,497) Burnham Beeches was dedicated to public use for all time.
27/9/1883, Thursday (-22,503) The UK Bank rate was reduced to 3%.
13/9/1883, Thursday (-22,517) The UK Bank Rate was reduced to 3.5%.
11/9/1883, Tuesday (-22,519) Anti-European riots in Canton, China.
1/9/1883, Saturday (-22,529) The railway from Monmouth to Coleford opened.
27/8/1883. Monday (-22,534) Krakatoa, a volcanic island in the Sunda Strait between Sumatra and Java, erupted. Thousands were killed by the resulting tsunamis. In all over 50,000 died as noon turned to darkness and a tidal wave flooded 120 feet high. The eruption was allegedly heard 2,200 miles away in Australia. The eruption caused spectacular red sunsets in Britain for several weeks afterwards.
19/8/1883, Sunday (-22,542) ‘Coco’ Chanel, French fashion designer, was born near Issoire as Gabrielle Chanel.
12/8/1883, Sunday (-22,549) The last quagga died, at Amsterdam Zoo.
11/8/1883, Saturday (-22,550) The railway from Plymouth to Princeton, Devon, opened.
3/8/1883, Friday (-22,558) The first section of Volk’s electric tramway, Brighton, opened.
1/8/1883, Wednesday (-22,560) Inland parcel post began in Britain.
29/7/1883. Sunday (-22,563) Benito Mussolini, Italian founder of the Fascist party and ally of Hitler, was born in Predappio, near Forli, a town in the impoverished Romagna region of east-central Italy. He was the son of a blacksmith.
28/7/1883, Saturday (-22,564) A water bicycle with paddlewheels was pedalled across the English Channel in less than eight hours
17/7/1883, Tuesday (-22,575) A boat powered by stored electricity ran from the Temple Pier, London, to Greenwich in 37 minutes.
15/7/1883, Sunday (-22,577) Tom Thumb, the American circus midget who finally attained a height of 40 inches, died.
3/7/1883, Tuesday (-22,589) Franz Kafka, Czech poet and playwright, was born.
13/6/1883, Wednesday (-22,609) The French continued fighting in Madagascar. Tamatave was bombarded and French subjects expelled from the capital.
5/6/1883, Tuesday (-22,617) Lord Keynes, economist, was born.
2/6/1883, Saturday (-22,620) (1) The first floodlit baseball match took place at Fort Wayne in Indiana; the home team played Quincy from Illinois.
(2) Rioting at Stromeferry, Scotland, to try to prevent fish being despatched to London as so desecrating the Sabbath.
27/5/1883, Sunday (-22,626) Alexander III was crowned as ‘Tsar of all the Russias’.
24/5/1883. Thursday (-22,629) Brooklyn Bridge, New York, was opened. At over a mile long, with a central span of 1595 feet, this was then the longest suspension bridge in the world, and was the first bridge in New York City. It was designed by John Augustus Roebling.
20/5/1883, Sunday (-22,633) Faisal I, King of Iraq was born.
16/5/1883, Wednesday (-22,637) The French commenced hostilities in Madagascar, bombarding Majunga.
10/5/1883, Thursday (-22,643) (1) In London, the Lord Mayor opened the Central Fish Market, Farringdon Street.
(2) The UK Bank rate was raised to 4%.
9/5/1883, Wednesday (-22,644) The Swindon to Highworth railway opened.
7/5/1883, Monday (-22,646) The Prince of Wales opened the Royal College of Music, Kensington, London.
1/5/1883, Tuesday (-22,652) (1) The railway from Acton Town to Hounslow, west London, opened. At Osterley the line as opened went to a station at Hounslow Town, see 21/7/1884.
(2) The new road system at Hyde Park Corner, London, opened.
(3) The Great International Exhibition at Amsterdam opened.
30/4/1883, Monday (-22,653) Edouard Manet, artist, died.
16/4/1883, Monday (-22,667) (1) Paul Kruger became President of South Africa.
(2) The Shakerstone via Coalville to Loughborough Derby Road railway opened.
10/4/1883, Tuesday (-22,673) On the instructions of the US Secretary for the Interior (Henry M Teller), the Commissioner for Indian Affairs distributed instructions to eradicate ‘demoralising and barbarous’ traditions. The document defined ‘Indian Offenses’ that included having more than one wife, holding religious feasts and dances such as the Sun Dance, and practising traditional medicine. Other native traditions such as purchasing a wife by leaving property at her father’s house and showing grief by destroying property were also outlawed.
5/4/1883, Thursday (-22,678) The Melton Constable to North Walsham railway opened.
4/4/1883, Wednesday (-22,679) Death of Peter Cooper, US inventor and steam locomotive designer (born 12/2/1791).
26/3/1883. Monday (-22,688) Mrs Alva Vanderbilt threw the world’s most expensive party, spending US$75,000 on food and entertainments at a costume ball.
17/3/1883, Saturday (-22,697) Karl Marx was buried in Highgate Cemetery, London.
14/3/1883. Wednesday (-22,700) Karl Marx, born 5/5/1818, died. He was aged 64, and was buried at Highgate cemetery, London. He had lived in London since his expulsion from Prussia and Paris in 1849. Marx and Engels drew up the Communist Manifesto in January 1848, calling for workers of all lands to unite. He published Volume One of Das Kapital in 1867. He, his wife Jenny, and their children lived in poverty in two rooms in Soho, while Marx studied economic history in the British Museum.
1/3/1883, Thursday (-22,713) The UK Bank Base Rate was further reduced from 3.5% to 3%.
25/2/1883, Sunday (-22,717) Princess Alice Mary, later Countess of Athlone, was born.
18/2/1883, Sunday (-22,724) The funeral of the composer Wagner was held at Bayreuth.
17/2/1883, Saturday (-22,725) The vacant / engaged toilet sign was patented by Mr Ashwell of Herne Hill, London.
15/2/1883, Thursday (-22,727) In the UK, the Bank Base Rate was reduced from 4% to 3.5%.
13/2/1883. Tuesday (-22,729) German composer Wilhelm Richard Wagner died in Venice aged 69, from a heart complaint. He was infamous for his anti-Semitism.
5/2/1883, Monday (-22,737) The railway from Swindon to Andoversford opened.
30/1/1883. Tuesday (-22,743) ‘The Ashes’ were created when after a cricket match in Sydney a bail was burnt and the ashes given to the England side, who had won.
29/1/1883, Monday (-22,744) King Cetywayo of the Zulus was restored to a (part of) his old kingdom by the British under Shepstone, as decided by PM Gladstone. However Cetywayo’s enemies attacked within the week, and after a year’s fighting Cetywayo was defeated and fled to a native reserve at Ekowe, see 8/2/1884.
25/1/1883, Thursday (-22,748) In the UK, the Bank Base Rate was 4%.
23/1/1883, Tuesday (-22,750) The French artist Gustave Dore (born 6/1/1832 in Strasbourg|) died in Paris.
3/1/1883. Wednesday (-22,770) Clement Richard Attlee, Labour Prime Minister from 1945 to 1951, was born in Putney, London.
1/1/1883, Monday (-22,772) The Leicester to John O’Gaunt railway opened.
22/12/1882, Friday (-22,782) The first string of Christmas lights was made by Edward H Johnson, a colleague of Thomas Edison.
6/12/1882, Wednesday (-22,798)
11/11/1882, Saturday (-22, 823) Gustav VI, King of Sweden, was born the eldest son of Gustav V.
1/11/1882, Wednesday (-22,833) The Bala Junction to Blaenau Ffestiniog railway opened.
17/10/1882, Tuesday (-22,848) Charles Parnell inaugurated the National League, an Irish Nationalist Movement. Within three years the organisation had over 1,000 branches, and Parnell had secured the backing of the Roman Catholic Church. After internal dissentions in 1890 the organisation was eventually succeeded by the Irish National Federation in 1900.
14/10/1882, Saturday (-22,851) Eamon de Valera, Irish Prime Minister and President of Ireland, was born in Manhattan, New York City.
9/10/1882, Monday (-22,856) The railway from Heathfield to Christow (Exeter) opened.
30/9/1882, Saturday (-22,865) Water power was used to produce electricity for the first time, at a plant on the Fox River near Appleton, Wisconsin, USA.
25/9/1882, Monday (-22,870) The London Underground line from Aldgate to Tower Hill was opened.
14/9/1882, Thursday (-22,881) British troops occupied Cairo.
13/9/1882. Wednesday (-22,882) A British Expeditionary Force under Lieutenant-General Sir Garnet Wolseley routed the Egyptian forces under Arabi Pasha at Tel el Kebir. Britain feared for the safety of the Suez Canal.
4/9/1882, Monday (-22,891) The Edison Electric Illuminating Company began producing electricity at Pearl Street, New York, USA. It had a total of 85 customers.
1/9/1882, Friday (-22,894) In Poland Ludwik Warynski founded the Proletariat Party, a ‘social-revolutionary party working for the liberation of both the rural and urban working class’.
29/8/1882, Tuesday (-22,897) Samuel Goldwyn was born.
3/8/1882, Thursday (-22,923) Suez was occupied by British marines.
1/8/1882, Tuesday (-22,925) The railway from Spalding via Sleaford to Lincoln opened. The Stoke Ferry branch, Norfolk, opened. The Aberfoyle branch opened.
27/7/1882, Thursday (-22,930) Sir Geoffrey de Havilland, British aircraft designer and manufacturer, was born in Woburn, Buckinghamshire.
24/7/1882, Monday (-22,933) Arabi Pasha declared a Holy War in Egypt.
11/7/1882. Tuesday (-22,946) A British fleet bombarded Alexandria in retaliation for nationalist violence in which 50 Europeans died.
6/7/1882, Thursday (-22,951) The first electric iron was patented, by Henry Seeley of New York.
4/7/1882, Tuesday (-22,953) The railway from Thorpe le Soken to Clacton on Sea opened.
11/6/1882. Sunday (-22,976) (see 31/8/1801). After a mutiny of soldiers in Alexandria in 1881, an Anglo-French fleet arrived off the town in May 1882. This provoked a massacre of Europeans in Alexandria on 11/6/1882. The ruler of Egypt, Arabi Pasha, was strengthening the system of forts in Egypt and failed to respond to an ultimatum issued on 10/7/1882 by the British Admiral, Sir Beauchamp Seymour (Lord Alcester). Hence the British invaded and occupied the whole of Egypt.
6/6/1882, Tuesday (-22,981) The three-mile limit for territorial waters was established by the Hague Convention.
2/6/1882, Friday (-22,985) Guiseppe Garibaldi, Italian soldier and politician who helped form the Kingdom of Italy, died aged 74.
29/5/1882, Monday (-22,989) The branch railway from Elmers End to Hayes opened.
22/5/1882. Monday (-22,996) The USA signed a treaty with Korea recognising its independence from China, Russia, and Japan.
20/5/1882. Saturday (-22,998) Austria formed a Triple Alliance with Germany and Italy; this threatened Russia.
18/5/1882, Thursday (-23,000) The present Eddystone Lighthouse, the 4th on the site, built by Sir James Douglas, was opened.
6/5/1882, Saturday (-23,012) (1) Queen Victoria opened Epping Park to the public.
(2) Lord Frederick Cavendish, Irish Chief Secretary and brother-in-law of British Prime Minister Gladstone, also T H Burke, his Under-Secretary, were attacked and stabbed to death by members of ‘The Invincibles’, a Nationalist Irish group. The entire faction was later arrested and five of them hanged. British public opinion was outraged and harsh coercive legislation followed.
1/5/1882, Monday (-23,017) The railway from Grafton to Andover opened.
27/4/1882, Thursday (-25,021) Ralph Waldo Emerson, US poet and essayist, died aged 78 in Concord..
24/4/1882, Monday (-23,024) Lord Dowding, British Air Force Commander who won the Battle of Britain, was born in Moffat, Scotland.
19/4/1882. Wednesday (-23,029) Charles Darwin, who developed his theory of evolution, died aged 73 near Orpington, Kent. He was buried in Westminster Abbey.
13/4/1882, Thursday (-23,035) The Anti-Semitic League was founded in Prussia.
12/4/1882, Wednesday (-23,036) The Didcot to Newbury railway opened.
10/4/1883, Monday (-23,038)
9/4/1882, Sunday (-23,039) Dante Gabriel Rossetti, English painter and poet, died.
8/4/1882, Saturday (-23,040) Warwickshire County Cricket Club was formed at a meeting in the Queen’s Hotel, Coventry.
2/4/1883, Sunday (-23,046) The Moffat branch railway opened.
24/3/1882, Friday (-23,055) H W Longfellow, real name Henry Wadsworth, American poet, died in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
4/3/1882, Saturday (-23,075) The first electric tramcars ran in London, from east London to Leytonstone.
2/3/1882. Thursday (-23,077) Roderick MacLean tried unsuccessfully to assassinate Queen Victoria, as she sat in a railway carriage at Windsor station.
25/2/1882, Saturday (-23,082) The first Wales-Ireland international football match took place at Wrexham. Wales won 7 to 1.
15/2/1882. Wednesday (-23,092) The first shipment of frozen meat left New Zealand for Britain aboard SS Dunedin.
2/2/1882, Thursday (-23,105) Birth of the Irish novelist James Joyce, in Dublin; he wrote Ulysses.
30/1/1882, Monday (-23,108) Franklin Delano Roosevelt, American Democrat and 32nd President, was born near Hyde Park, New York.
20/1/1882, Friday (-23,118) A drapers shop in Newcastle on Tyne, England, became the first shop to be lit by electric light.
18/1/1882, Wednesday (-23,120) A A Milne English writer of children’s books and creator of Winnie the Pooh, was born in St John’s Wood, London.
12/1/1882. Thursday (-23,126) The Edison Electric Light Company at 57 Holborn Viaduct established London’s first electric power station. It supplied the area between Holborn Circus and the Old Bailey with street lighting from 12/1 and with domestic current from 12/4/1882. In New York, USA, electric power was switched on from 4/9/1882. However the UK Parliament then passed the Electric Light Act; this discouraged private building of power stations because it empowered local authorities to take them over after 21 years. This made it impossible for private investors to recoup their money, in such a short time span, The Act was amended in 1888 to make the period of private operation 42 years. However even as late as 1890, major UK cities such as Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham and Edinburgh had no electric power.
1/1/1882, Sunday (-23,137) The St Gotthard railway tunnel, 16 km long, opened to traffic.
7/12/1881, Wednesday (-23,162) The Appledore to Dungeness railway opened.
2/12/1881, Friday (-23,167) Karl Marx’s wife Jenny died.
25/11/1881, Friday (-23,174) Pope John XXIII was born in Sotto il Monte, near Bergamo, Italy, as Angelo Guiseppe Roncali, the son of a peasant.
9/11/1881, Wednesday (-23,190) Dr Herbert Thomas Kalmus, US inventor of Technicolor, was born.
26/10/1881, Wednesday (-23,204) The gunfight at the OK Corral, Arizona, took place between Doc Holliday and Wyatt, Virgil and Morgan Earp and the Clantons and McLaurys.
25/10/1881, Tuesday (-23,205) Pablo Picasso, Spanish painter who created Cubism, was born in Malaga, Andalusia.
16/10/1881, Sunday (-23,214) The British newspaper, The People, began publication.
15/10/1881, Saturday (-23,215) Marie Stopes, scientist and education reformer, was born in Edinburgh.
1/10/1881. Saturday (-23,229) The world’s first electric power station was built at Godalming, Surrey, and began operating this day. It supplied Godalming town council and a leather mill on the River Wey.
19/9/1881, Monday (-23,241) James Abram Garfield, US Republican and 20th President since 4/3/1881, who had been shot on 2/7/1891, died at Elberon, New Jersey. The remainder of his term was completed by Chester Arthur.
4/9/1881. Sunday (-23,256) The Edison electric lighting system went into action in New York as a generator serving 85 paying customers was switched on.
1/9/1881, Thursday (-23,259) The Pontrilas to Dorstone railway opened.
30/8/1881. Tuesday (-23,261) Clement Ader of Germany patented the first stereo system, for a telephonic broadcasting service.
6/8/1881. Saturday (-23,285) Alexander Fleming, the Scottish bacteriologist who discovered penicillin, was born in Scotland. Fleming specialised in bacteriology at St Mary’s Hospital, London. The enormous death toll amongst soldiers suffering from infected wounds left Fleming seeking a chemical that could fight the infection. Whilst clearing up Petri dishes in which he had been growing bacteria, Fleming stumbled on a mouldy dish in which the bacteria had been killed. However it was not until the Second World War that chemists really took an interest in the development of penicillin. Fleming was knighted in 1944 and awarded the Nobel Prize in 1945.
3/8/1881, Wednesday (-23,288) William George Fargo, co-founder of the Wells Fargo Express in 1852, died aged 65.
11/7/1881, Monday (-23,311) The Chichester to Midhurst railway opened.
7/7/1881, Thursday (-23,315) The branch railway from Dunton Green to Westerham opened.
4/7/1881. Monday (-23,318) The outlaw William H Bonney, or Billy the Kid, born 23/11/1859, was shot dead in New Mexico by lawman Pat Garrett. He reputedly killed his first man before he was a teenager.
2/7/1881, Saturday (-23,320) James Garfield, American Republican and 22nd President, was shot by Charles Guiteau in Washington DC. He died on 19/9/1881 in Elberton, New Jersey.
26/6/1881, Sunday (-23,326) The Swindon to Marlborough railway, Wiltshire, opened.
15/6/1881, Wednesday (-23,337) The Dover to Deal railway, Kent, opened.
12/5/1881. Thursday (-23,371) Tunisia became a French Protectorate. The French invaded in April 1881 when the Tunisian first minister made various reforms taking away French economic privileges.
5/5/1881, Thursday (-23,378) Louis Pasteur tested his inoculation against anthrax on an ox, cows and saheep.
19/4/1881. Tuesday (-23,394) Benjamin Disraeli, British Conservative Prime Minister, died. He was buried at Hughenden, near High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. Robert Gascoyne Cecil, Lord Salisbury, was chosen to replace him as leader of the Conservative Party.
5/4/1881, Tuesday (-23,408) The Convention of Pretoria; the Transvaal became effectively independent, with only nominal British sovereignty.
31/3/1881, Thursday (-23,413) The railway from Bettws y Coed to Blaenau Ffestiniog opened.
28/3/1881, Monday (-23,416) Modest Mussorgsky, Russian composer, died of chronic alcoholism aged 42.
25/3/1881, Friday (-23,419) Bela Bartok, Hungarian composer, was born.
13/3/1881, Sunday (-23,431) Alexander II, Tsar of Russia since 1855, aged 62, died from injuries sustained when a bomb was thrown at him near his palace. The bomb was thrown by a group of Nihilists headed by Sophia Perovskaya. He was succeeded by his 36-year old son, Alexander III, who reacted to the assassination with great severity; this included a persecution of Russia’s Jews. Millions of them emigrated from Russia over the next three decades.
12/3/1881, Saturday (-23,432) Kemal Attaturk, Turkish President, was born in Salonika, Greece as Mustafa Kemal Pasha.
7/3/1881, Monday (-23,437) Ernest Bevin, Labour Party politician, was born in Winsford, Somerset.
4/3/1881, Friday (-23,440) James Abram Garfield, Republican, became the 20th US President, see 19/9/1881.
27/2/1881. Sunday (-23,445) The Boers defeated a British force at the Battle of Majuba in Northern Transvaal, killing 359 men. This was part of a force of 1,500 men that had marched into the Transvaal in December 1880.
5/2/1881, Saturday (-23,467) Thomas Carlyle, Scottish essayist, died at 5 Cheyne Row, Chelsea, London.
28/1/1881. Friday (-23,475) Fyodor Dostoyevsky died (born in Moscow, 30/10/1821, son of a surgeon) . His funeral cortege on 31/1/1881 was followed by 30,000 people. He wrote, amongst others, The Idiot, Crime and Punishment, and The Brothers Karamazov.
24/1/1881, Monday (-23,479) Russia, advancing from the north, took the Turkmen fortress of Geok Tepe.
17/1/1881, Monday (-23,486) A Chilean army occupied Peru, see 22/10/1883.
2/1/1881, Sunday (+23,501) The Rockefeller Brothers signed an agreement that gave them control over the entire US oil industry.
1/1/1881, Saturday (-23,502) First use of Postal Orders in Britain.
31/12/1880, Friday (-23,503) George Marshal, US general and politician who originated the Marshal Plan for the post World War Two reconstruction of Europe, was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania.
30/12/1880, Thursday (-23,504) The Transvaal became a Republic, headed by Paul Kruger.
22/12/1880. Wednesday (-23,512) George Elliot died.
20/12/1880, Monday (-23,514) Charles F Brush demonstrated his arc lamps along Broadway, preceding Edison’s lamp in commercial use.
9/12/1880, Thursday (-23,525) After Britain had annexed the Transvaal in 1877, on this day 9,000 Boers fought for their freedom and won, see 9/12/1838, 16/12/1949.
18/11/1880, Thursday (-23,546) The Irish Football Association was formed.
17/11/1880, Wednesday (-23,547) The first three female graduates from London University received their degrees.
11/11/1880. Thursday (-23,553) Ned Kelly, the infamous Australian outlaw whose gang terrorised the State of Victoria for 2 years, was hanged, aged 25, at Old Melbourne gaol, Russell Street. His last words were ‘such is life’. He came from a convict family; his father had been transported from Ireland in 1842. He shot a policeman and then fled into the bush; he was captured on 28/6/1880.
10/11/1880, Wednesday (-23,554) The British sculptor James Epstein was born (of Russian-Polish descent) in New York City.
2/11/1880. Tuesday (-23,562) The suffragettes Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton attempted to vote in an election in New Jersey, USA, but were stopped by a polling booth inspector.
5/10/1880, Tuesday (-23,590) Jacques Offenbach, composer, died in Paris.
1/10/1880, Friday (-23,594) The Edison Lamp Works began operations in New Jersey to manufacture the first electric light bulbs.
24/9/1880, From this date the land agent of Lord Erne, Captain Charles Cunningham Boycott (1832 – 1897), in County Mayo, was ‘boycotted’. Boycott had used troops to harvest crops when Irish labourers refused to do so. Parnell was now leader of the 61 Home Rule League members.
22/9/1880, Wednesday (-23,603) The suffragette Christobel Pankhurst was born, the daughter of Emmeline.
6/9/1880, Monday (-23,619) The first cricket Test match played in Britain, between England and Australia, took place at The Oval.
1/9/1880, Wednesday (-23,624) The British were defeated at the Battle of Kandahar, Afghanistan.
31/8/1880, Tuesday (-23,625) Queen Wilhelmina of The Netherlands was born.
14/8/1880. Saturday (-23,642) Cologne Cathedral was completed; it was begun in 1248.
12/8/1880, Thursday (-23,644) London’s Metropolitan Line was extended from Willesden Green through Harrow.
1/8/1880. Sunday (-23,655) The British lifted the siege of Kandahar, where a British garrison had been besieged by Afghan rebels. A 10,000 strong relief force had marched 313 miles, under General Sir Frederick Roberts, in just 23 days.
27/7/1880, Tuesday (-23,660) Battle of Maiwand, Second Afghan War.
14/7/1880. Wednesday (-23,673) Bismarck ended his Kulturkampf, or anti-Catholic policy.
3/7/1880, Saturday (-23,684) Morocco’s independence was recognised by the European powers and by Russia.
1/7/1880, Thursday (-23,686) (1) The railway from Tyndrum to Oban opened.
(2) Manchester Central Station opened.
29/6/1880. Tuesday (-23, 688) France annexed Tahiti.
1/6/1880. Tuesday (-23,716) The first public telephone call box was installed, in New Haven, Connecticut.
17/5/1880, Monday (-23,731) The Hollinwood and Dean Lane railway (Oldham, bypassing Werneth incline) opened.
15/4/1880. Thursday (-23,763) In Britain the Liberals won the General Election. Prime Minister William Gladstone took over from Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield.
30/3/1880. Tuesday (-23,779) France expelled the Jesuits from its territory. Jules Ferry, the Minister of public instruction, wished to create a public education system free from Church domination.
8/3/1880. Monday (-23,801) President Hayes of America declared that the USA will have jurisdiction over any canal built across Panama.
1/3/1880, Monday (-23,808) The District Line railway from West Brompton to Putney Bridge, west London, was opened.
29/2/1880, Sunday (-23,809) The cutting of the 9 ¼ mile St Gotthard railway tunnel in Switzerland was completed. The chief engineer was Louis Favre. This linked the French and Italian rail systems.
17/2/1880, Tuesday (-23,821) Tsar Alexander II narrowly escaped an assassination attempt by Nihilists as a bomb exploded outside the Winter Palace, St Petersburg.
2/2/1880, Monday (-23,836) (1) The first shipment of frozen meat from Sydney, Australia, arrived in Britain aboard the SS Strathaven.
(2) The Nottingham to Melton Mowbray railway opened to passengers.
27/1/1880. Tuesday (-23,842) Edison patented the electric filament light (the electric light bulb).
26/1/1880, Monday (-23,843) Douglas MacArthur, American military commander in the south-west Pacific in World War Two, was born near Little Rock, Arkansas.
15/1/1880. Thursday (-23,854) The first telephone directory in Britain was published by the London Telephone Company. It contained 255 entries.
28/12/1879. Sunday (-23,872) The Tay railway bridge collapsed whilst the 7.15 Edinburgh to Dundee train was crossing it. The train plummeted into the icy river below, killing 90 people. The bridge, between Fife and Angus, was designed by Thomas Bouch.
23/12/1879, Tuesday (-23,877) An unprecedented traffic jam occurred in New York. Horse drawn carts and coaches created a jam that lasted 5 hours.
21/12/1879, Sunday (-23,879) Joseph Stalin was born in Gori, Georgia, as Joseph Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili, son of a shoemaker.
20/12/1879, Saturday (-23,880) Thomas Edison privately demonstrated his ‘incandescent light’ at Menlo Park, New Jersey.
19/12/1879, Friday (-23,881)
18/12/1879, Thursday (-23,882) Paul Klee, artist, was born.
17/12/1879. Wednesday (-23,883) Chilean troops took Lima, Peru.
16/12/1879, Tuesday (-23,884) The Transvaal Republic was founded.
5/12/1879, Friday (-23,895) Clyde Cessna, American aircraft manufacturer, was born in Hawthorne, Iowa.
24/11/1879, Monday (-23,906) The Metropolitan Line from Baker Street to Willesden Green opened.
4/11/1879. Tuesday (-23,926) James R Ritty of Dayton, Ohio patented the first cash register. Pilfering by bartenders from Ritty’s saloon so undermined his health that he went on a sea voyage to Europe to recover. On board the ship, Ritty saw a machine that recorded the number of revolutions made by the ship’s propellers, which gave him the initial idea. In 1884 he formed the National Cash Register Company.
1/11/1879, Saturday (-23,929) The Seaton to Wansford, Northamptonshire, railway opened.
29/10/1879, Wednesday (-23,932) Franz von Papen, German politician and ambassador, was born in Werl, Westphalia.
27/10/1879, Monday (-23,934) The Liverpool Echo printed its first copy.
26/10/1879, Sunday (-23,935) Leon Trotsky was born in Yanovka, Ukraine, as Lev Davidovich Bronstein.
21/10/1879. Tuesday (-23,940) Thomas Edison successfully demonstrated the first durable light bulb.
6/10/1879, Monday (-23,955) Battle of Charasiab, Second Afghan War. British defeated the Afghans.
2/10/1879, Thursday (-23,959) The US poet Wallace Stevens was born in Reading, Pennsylvania.
1/10/1879. Wednesday (-23,960) An Austro-German alliance was signed.
24/9/1879, Wednesday (-23,967) The narrow gauge (3-foot) line from Halesworth to Southwold, Suffolk, opened.
18/9/1879, Thursday (-23,973)
Blackpool’s first annual
illuminations were switched on.
17/9/1879, Wednesday (-23,974) The International Potato Exhibition opened at Crystal Palace; thousands flocked to see it.
11/9/1879, Thursday (-23,980) The Looe to Liskeard railway opened to passengers.
6/9/1879, Saturday (-23,985) The first British telephone exchange opened, in Lombard Street, London.
3/9/1879, Wednesday (-23,988) Afghan rebellion against the British
1/9/1879, Monday (-23,990) The Ely to Newmarket, Cambridgeshire, opened.
27/8/1879, Wednesday (-23,995) Sir Rowland Hill, pioneer of the postal service, died. He devised the Penny Post in 1840.
8/8/1879, Friday (-24,014) Emiliano Zapata, Mexican revolutionary, was born.
28/7/1879, Monday (-24,025) King Cetywayo of the Zulus was captured by the British. He was brought to London in August 1882, where Gladstone decided upon his restoration, but only to a part of his old Kingdom. See 29/1/1883.
5/7/1879, Saturday (-24,048) Dwight F Davis, US Secretary for War 1925-29, who donated the Davis Cup for tennis, was born in St Louis, Missouri.
4/7/1879, Friday (-24,049) The British routed the Zulus at Ulundi, see 11/1/1879 and 28/8/2879.
1/7/1879, Tuesday (-24,052) The District Line railway between Turnham Green and Ealing Broadway, west London, was opened.
27/6/1879, Friday (-24,056)
25/5/1879, Sunday (-24,089) The newspaper tycoon Lord Beaverbrook was born in Maple, Ontario, Canada as William Maxwell Aitken.
24/5/1879, Saturday (-24,090) William Lloyd Harrison, American campaigner for abolition of slavery and for women’s suffrage, died in New York.
19/5/1879, Monday (-24,095) Lady Astor, first woman to sit in the House of Lords, was born.
29/4/1879. Tuesday (-24,115) Sir Thomas Beecham, English conductor, born.
23/4/1879. Wednesday (-24,121) First Royal Shakespeare Theatre opened in Stratford on Avon (replaced by a new one on 23/4/1932).
25/3/1879, Tuesday (-24,150) Leicestershire County Cricket Club was formed in Leicester.
23/3/1879, Sunday (-24,152) Conflict between Chile and Bolivia, Peru. Bolivia had seized the assets of the Chilean Nitrate Company at Antofagusta, then in the Bolivian province of Atacama. On this day Chilean militia marched into Bolivian territory. Bolivia had declared war on 1/3/1879 but Peru did not declare war until 5/4/1879; this delay enabled Chile to occupy all Bolivia’s ports, and from there to attack Peru.
14/3/1879. Friday (-24,161) Albert Einstein, physicist and mathematician, was born in Ulm, Bavaria, to Jewish parents.
8/3/1879, Saturday (-24,167) Birth of Otto Hahn, discoverer of nuclear fission, who received the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1944.
5/3/1879, Wednesday (-24,170) Lord Beveridge, political economist, was born.
27/2/1879. Thursday (-24,176) Chemists Constantin Fahlberg and Professor Ira Pemson in Baltimore reported the discovery of saccharin, at John Hopkins University, Baltimore.
22/2/1879, Saturday (-24,181) F W Woolworth opened the first Woolworth 5 and 10 cent variety store in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. An earlier Woolworths 5 cent store in Utica, New York, had failed.
14/2/1879. Friday (-24,189) The Chilean army under Colonel Emilio Sotomayor Baeza occupied the Bolivian Pacific port of Antofagasta, and on 1/3/1879 Bolivia declared war against Chile. Chile also occupied part of the Peruvian Pacific coast. On 11/12/1883 a peace treaty between Chile and Bolivia was signed whereby Bolivia agreed to the occupation of its seacoast by Chile.
22/1/1879, Wednesday (-24,212) Battle of Rorke’s Drift, where a few British soldiers fought off a large Zulu army. Eleven VCs were awarded for this action.
20/1/1879, Monday (-24,214) The railway from Meldon Junction (Okehampton) to Holsworthy opened.
18/1/1879. Saturday (-24,216) (1) The first issue of Boys Own was published by O S Beaton, husband of the famous cook book writer. Published until 1967, the journal was backed by the Religious Tract Society.
(2) The first England v Wales football international was played at The Oval, Kennington, London. England won 2 – 1.
11/1/1879. Saturday (-24,223) The British-Zulu war began. Lord Chelmsford entered Zululand, with 13,000 troops. The British accused the Zulu King, Cetywayo, of fomenting revolt against the Boers and British. The British, in December 1878, demanded reparations from Cetywayo, whilst awarding him the territory he claimed from the Boers. See 4/7/1879.
3/1/1879, Friday (-24,231) Sofia was designated the capital of Bulgaria.
28/12/1878, Saturday (-24,237) Pope Leo XIII issued an encyclical, Quod apolostici muneris, condemning the rise of socialism, communism, the nihilists and anarchists.
10/12/1878, Tuesday (-24,255) Henry Wells, partner of William Fargo, died.
21/11/1878, Thursday (-24,274) The British Army advanced into Afghanistan from India.
22/10/1878, Tuesday (-24,304) The first rugby match to be played under floodlights was held at Broughton, Lancashire; they played Swinton.
19/10/1878. Saturday (-24,307) Bismarck passed an anti-Socialist law, placing many restraints on socialist meetings and banning trade union activities.
14/10/1878, Monday (-24,312) The first football match played under floodlights took place at Bramall Lane, Sheffield.
7/10/1878, Monday (-24,319) In London, the railway was extended from Green Lanes (later, Noel Park) to Palace Gates, see 1/1/1878.
4/10/1878, Friday (-24,322) The first Chinese Embassy in the USA opened, in Washington DC.
2/10/1878, Wednesday (-24,324) The City of Glasgow Bank crashed, with net debts of £6,213,313, 17s. By comparison a cook in a Scottish country mansion might earn £14 a year, a cheap (steerage) passage on a liner from Glasgow to New York cost £6 6s, and a bottle of vintage champagne cost 5s. The crash wiped out over 10% of Scotland’s banking capital.
12/9/1878. Thursday (-24,344) Cleopatra’s Needle, an ancient red granite Egyptian obelisk 68.5 feet high, originally made for Thothmes III in 1460 BC, was presented to Britain and re-erected on the Thames Embankment.
1/9/1878, Sunday (-24,355) Emma Nutt became the first woman to work as a telephone operator, on the exchange at Boston, Massachusetts.
31/7/1878, Wednesday (-24,387) Northamptonshire cricket club was founded.
13/7/1878. Saturday (-24,405) At the Congress of Berlin, (Treaty of Berlin) Britain, Russia, Austria, Germany, France, Italy, and the Ottoman Empire reached agreement on the future of the Balkan states, superseding the Treaty of San Stefano. Northern Dobruja, formerly part of Bulgaria under Turkish rule, was given to Romania. At the same time, Romania ceded Bessarabia to Russia. Bessarabia was more desirable than Dobruja, and Romania wanted Transylvania, which belonged to Hungary but had a mainly Romanian population. The independence of Romania, Serbia, and Montenegro were recognised by Turkey; Bulgaria was also divided into two parts, one of which, Eastern Rumelia, was to be a self-governing Turkish Province. In 1885 an uprising in Eastern Rumelia resulted in the union of that province with Bulgaria. Russian naval expansion was limited, Austro-Hungary was allowed to occupy Bosnia-Hercegovina, the location of Sarajevo.
12/7/1878, Friday (-24,406) Turkey ceded Cyprus to British administration.
22/6/1878, Saturday (-24,426) At Shumen the Turks capitulated to the Russians; the town of Shumen was ceded by Turkey to Bulgaria. It was renamed Kolarovgrad in 1950.
5/6/1878, Wednesday (-24,443) Pancho Villa, Mexican revolutionary, was born.
4/6/1878. Tuesday (-24,444) Britain and Turkey signed a secret agreement by which Britain was allowed to occupy Cyprus in return for protecting Turkey against Russian advances in Anatolia.
11/5/1878, Saturday (-24,468) The railway from Sutton to St Ives opened.
31/3/1878, Sunday (-24,509) Woodside railway station, Birkenhead, opened.
18/3/1878, Monday (-24,522) The railway from Ascot to Ash Vale opened.
3/3/1878. Sunday (-24,537) The Treaty of San Stefano ended the war between Russia and Turkey. Bulgaria, Russia’s ally, was enlarged to include much of Thrace and Macedonia, with ports on the Black Sea and Aegean. Britain objected. The arrival of a British fleet on 15/2/1878 as the Russians stood at the gates of Istanbul persuaded the Russians to make peace. Russia and Britain were now on the brink of war.
20/2/1878. Wednesday (-24,548) Pope Leo XIII (Gioacchino Vincenzo Pecci) was elected, after a third ballot, following the death of Pope Pius IX (see 7/2/1878). Pope Leo XIII then began negotiating with the German government to end the crackdown on the influence of the church in Germany, or Kulturkampf.
19/2/1878, Tuesday (-24,549) Thomas Edison patented the phonograph.
15/2/1878. Friday (-24,553) A British fleet arrived at Istanbul in support of the faltering Ottoman Empire. An earlier decision to send a fleet had been reversed in January 1878.
12/2/1878. Tuesday (-24,556) The first weekly weather report was published by the Met Office.
8/2/1878. Friday (-24,560) Britain dispatched a fleet to Constantinople. A Conference concerning the growth of Russian influence in the Balkans and the waning of Turkish power there had broken down without agreement. In the summer of 1877 war broke out between Russia and Turkey. Britain was concerned that if Russia advanced to the Bosphorus, British interests in the Mediterranean would be threatened so she intervened in favour of Turkey.
7/2/1878, Thursday (-24,561) Pope Pius IX died after a reign of over 31 years was succeeded by Pope Leo XIII (Gioacchino Vincenzo Pecci). See 20/2/1878.
4/2/1878, Monday (-24,564)
2/2/1878, Saturday (-24,566) Greece declared war on Turkey.
1/2/1878, Friday (-24,567) The extension line eastwards from Maze Hill, SE London to Charlton (junction with line to Woolwich) opened.
31/1/1878. Thursday (-24,568) Following the capture of Plevna (see 15/1/1877), and also Plovdiv and Adrianople, the Russians closed in on Istanbul. The Ottoman Turks opened truce negotiations at Adrianople.
28/1/1878, Monday (-24,571) America’s first commercial telephone switchboard exchange opened in New Haven, Connecticut.
25/1/1878, Friday (-24,574) The first torpedo was fired in warfare; a Russian boat sank a Turkish steamer.
23/1/1878, Wednesday (-24,576) In Moscow, a trial of nearly 200 revolutionaries ended in acquittals. However the Russian police arrested most of them afterwards and sent them to Siberia anyway.
22/1/1878. Tuesday (-24,577) Milk was delivered in glass bottles for the first time.
20/1/1878, Sunday (-24,579) Russian forces attacking Turkey captured Adrianople, threatening Constantinople and the Straits.
15/1/1878, Tuesday (-24,584) London University awarded degrees to women for the first time.
14/1/1878. Monday (-24,585) Queen Victoria was given a demonstration of Alexander Graham Bell’s new invention, the telephone, at Osborne House.
9/1/1878, Wednesday (-24,590) Victor Emmanuel, who became the first King of Italy in 1863, died of fever in Rome aged 57. He was succeeded by his son Umberto, aged 33, who ruled until his assassination in 1900.
6/1/1878, Sunday (-24,593) The US poet Carl Sandburg was born ij Galesburg, Illinois.
4/1/1878, Friday (-24,595) Sofia was captured by Russian troops from the Ottoman Empire.
1/1/1878, Tuesday (-24,598) In London, the railway from Seven Sisters to Green Lanes (later, Noel Park) opened, see 7/10/1878.
31/12/1877, Monday (-24,599) The painter Gustave Coubert died, aged 59.
22/12/1877. Saturday (-24,608) Liquid oxygen was made for the first time, in Geneva.
17/12/1877, Monday (-24,613) The Malmesbury branch railway opened.
11/12/1877, Tuesday (-24,619) Englishman Eadward Muybridge, photographer of the American West, used a novel photographic technique to resolve a bet made by the Governor of California, rail magnate Leland Stanford. Stanford believed that all four legs of a racehorse left the ground simultaneously as it galloped. Muybridge proved Stanford right by stringing tripwires across a racecourse and galloping a horse down it, setting off camera shots to obtain a series of still shots. Muybridge then used the novel technique to study dancers and runners in action.
6/12/1877. Thursday (-24,624) Thomas Alva Edison made the first recording of a human voice. He spoke Mary had a little lamb into his phonograph. Edison was working to improve the efficiency of the telegraph transmitter, and noticed that the machine gave off sounds resembling the spoken word when played at high speed. He wondered if he could record a telephone message. He attached the diaphragm of a telephone receiver to a needle, using the needle to prick paper to record a message. He then progressed to using a cylinder wrapped in tinfoil instead of paper, which succeeded in playing back the nursery rhyme he had recorded.
18/11/1877. Sunday (-24,642) In the Caucasus, Russia captured the fortress of Kars from Ottoman Turkey.
13/11/1877, Tuesday (-24,647) A demonstration by socialist marchers in Trafalgar Square led to violent clashes with mounted police and guardsmen.
22/10/1877, Monday (-24,669) The Worcester to Leominster railway opened.
10/10/1877. Wednesday (-24,681) Motoring pioneer William Morris, 1st Viscount Sheffield, Lord Nuffield, was born in Worcester.
24/9/1877. Monday (-24,697) In Japan, a Samurai rebellion which began in Satsuma in January 1876 was over with the suicide of its leader Saigo Takamori. Saigo resigned from the Japanese government when it decided not to invade Korea, and became leader of some 40,000 disaffected samurai, frustrated at being deprived of a foreign war. More seriously for them, the samurai had been overtaken by the establishment of a modern Japanese army, with firearms and other technology. The Samurai were forbidden to wear their distinctive military dress or carry swords; the Japanese government had assumed responsibility for their stipends and cut them sharply. In effect the samurai had become low grade civil servants.
17/9/1877, Monday (-24,704) William Henry Fox Talbot, English pioneer of photography, died at Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire.
15/9/1877, Saturday (-24,706) Crazy Horse, Sioux Chief, one of the leaders at the victory of Little Big Horn in 1876, died.
13/9/1877. Thursday (-24,708) Manchester Town Hall opened.
11/9/1877, Tuesday (-24,710) The Third Battle of Plevna.
29/8/1877. Wednesday (-24,723) The Mormon leader Brigham Young died.
27/8/1877, Monday (-24,725) Charles Stewart Rolls, partner of Rolls Royce, was born in London.
23/8/1877. Thursday (-24,729) Britain passed the Merchandise Act, obliging exporters to indicate the place of manufacture of their goods.
20/8/1877. Monday (-24,732) Arthur Kennedy, the new governor of Queensland, gave assent to a Bill drastically cutting Chinese immigration into Queensland, after the previous governor refused to pass it.
13/8/1877, Monday (-24,739) Birkenhead, near Liverpool, became a borough; John Laird was the first Mayor.
1/8/1877. Wednesday (-24,751) In Boston, USA, The Bell Telephone Company was formed, headed by Alexander Graham Bell.
30/7/1877, Monday (-24,753) The second Battle of Plevna.
26/7/1877. Thursday (-24,757) In the USA, 19 people were killed when police and cavalry charged striking railwaymen. There was a national strike by railway workers, angered by a 10% wage cut. They protested that a brakeman earned only US$1.75 for a 12 hour day and that this was the second wage cut in four years. Others were concerned about the import of ‘Communistic’ ideas from abroad.
16/7/1877, Monday (-24,767) The Hemel Hempstead to Harpenden railway opened.
9/7/1877. Monday (-24,774) The first lawn tennis championships were staged at Wimbledon, at the original site at Worple Road.
24/6/1877, Sunday (-24,789) The St John’s Ambulance brigade was formed, as the Ambulance Association, by the Red Cross.
1/6/1877, Friday (-24,812) (1) The District Line from Hammersmith to Ealing Broadway, W London, opened.
(2) The St Erth to St Ives railway, Cornwall, opened.
15/5/1877, Tuesday (-24,829) Jews in Switzerland were granted full citizenship by the Emancipation Law enacted this day.
6/5/1877. Sunday (-24,838) Chief Crazy Horse and his Sioux Indians gave themselves up to US troops, abandoning claims to Nebraska.
1/5/1877, Tuesday (-24,843) The Westerfield to Felixtowe railway opened.
24/4/1877, Tuesday (-24,850) After the Turkish Parliament had met on 19/3/1877 and rejected Russian demands, Russia declared war on Turkey.
12/4/1877. Thursday (-24,862) Britain annexed the South African Republic of Transvaal, to the anger of the Boer farmers. The Transvaal treasury was bankrupt following false hopes of gold and a costly war against the Black population. At the Sand River Conference in 1852 Britain had recognised the Transvaal, but now Britain claimed that the republic was unable to defend itself and that British subjects there were in danger. The Boers offered non-violent resistance, and their leader, Paul Kruger, went to London to present their case.
24/3/1877, Saturday (-24,881) The only dead-heat in the history of the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race took place.
15/3/1877, Thursday (-24,890) The first cricket Test Match, in Melbourne between Australia and England, was won by Australia.
15/1/1877. Monday (-24,949) Russia and Austria agreed that Austria shall be neutral in any war in the Balkans between Turkey and Russia. The two states rejected the idea of a Slav state in the Balkans. Russia declared war on Turkey on 24/4/1877. Rumania entered the war on the side of Russia in May 1877 and a joint Russian/Rumanian army laid siege to the Bulgarian town of Plevna. The Turks in Plevna surrendered in December 1877. See 31/1/1878.
4/1/1877. Thursday (-24,960) Cornelius Vanderbilt, who rose from poor agrarian roots to amass a US$100million fortune in shipping and railways, died aged 83. He had started a ferry service to Staten Island at age 16 and by 30 he controlled almost all the Hudson shipping business, by undercutting his competitors.
29/12/1876, Friday (-24,966) 83 passengers were killed at Ashtabula, Ohio, as a 13-year-old bridge gave way under a train. A junior engineer had been fired in 1863 when he protested that the bridge, built by the railway’s chief engineer, was not strong enough.
18/11/1876, Saturday (-25,007) The last section of London’s Circle Line, from Mansion House to Bishopsgate, 1.5 miles was completed. The two companies involved, the Metropolitan and District, had fallen out but City interests compelled the completion after an independent railway company was floated, the Metropolitan Inner Circle Completion Company.
1/11/1876, Wednesday (-25,024) The railway from Chepstow to Monmouth opened.
31/10/1876. Tuesday (-25,025) Under pressure from Russia, Turkey agreed to an armistice with Serbia and Montenegro.
7/10/1876, Saturday (-25,049) The first greyhound race with an artificial hare, the Hendon Cup, was run at the Welsh Harp, Hendon, London.
1/10/1876, Sunday (-25,055) The Girvan to Challoch Junction railway opened.
20/9/1876, Wednesday (-25,066) Sir Titus Salt, born 20/9/1803, died.
19/9/1876. Tuesday (-25,067) Melville R Bissell of Grand Rapids, Michigan patented the Bissell carpet sweeper, the first practical way to sweep carpets of dust. He suffered from headaches caused by his allergy to straw dust which came from the straw packing he used in his china shop. He invented a sweeper with a sprung brush roller that responded to pressure on the handle.
12/9/1876. Tuesday (-25,074) King Leopold of Belgium formed the International African Association to co-ordinate the activities of European explorers in Africa.
6/9/1876, Wednesday (-25,080) San Francisco and Los Angeles were now lined by rail.
17/8/1876. Thursday (-25,100) Wagner’s opera Gotterdammerung premiered at Bayreuth.
9/8/1876. Wednesday (-25,108) The Turks invaded Serbia and defeated the Serbs at Aleksinac. On 1/9/1876 the Turks again defeated the Serbs at Akleksinac.
7/8/1876. Monday (-25,110) The Dutch spy, Mata Hari (Margarete Gertrude Zelle), who passed secrets to the Germans in World War One, was born in Leeuwarden. The French arrested her in 1917 and she was executed by firing squad.
1/8/1876. Tuesday (-25,116) (1) The Sharpness branch line opened.
(2) Colorado became the 38th State of the USA.
8/7/1876. Saturday (-25,140) The Austrian and Russian foreign Ministers, Andrassy and Gorchakov, met at the Reichstadt in Bohemia to discuss the future of the Balkans on the conclusion of the current conflict.
1/7/1876 Sunday (-25,146) Montenegro also declared war on Turkey.
30/6/1876. Friday (-25,148) Serbia declared war on Ottoman Turkey.
25/6/1876. Sunday (-25,153) Custer’s Last Stand took place at Little Bighorn, Montana. Custer died with all 264 men of his 7th cavalry. The killing was done by Sioux Indians led by Chiefs Crazy Horse and Gall. The Battle was the result of a confused policy by the US government towards the Indians. The Indians, Eastern Sioux, and Northern Cheyennes, had been guaranteed exclusive possession of the Dakota territory west of the Missouri River, but white miners were settling in the Black Hills area searching for gold. The US government refused to move the miners and so conflict became inevitable. The Indians were asked to leave or be considered hostile and in June 1876 US soldiers moved in. However Custer, with his 650 men, was unaware that the Indians had 1,500 warriors close by. After the disaster of Little Bighorn, the US army flooded the area with soldiers, forcing the Indians to surrender.
20/6/1877, Tuesday (-25,158) The first commercial telephone service in Canada was started by Hugh Cossart Baker, in Hamilton, Ontario.
30/5/1876, Tuesday (-25,179) Abdul Aziz, 32nd Sultan of Ottoman Turkey, born 9/2/1830, was forced to abdicate. Succeeding his brother, Abdul Mejid, in 1861, he promised economic and political reform, but instead wasted money on personal luxuries and grand building projects. Insurrections occurred in Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1875. He was assassinated on 3/6/1876.
29/5/1876, Monday (-25,180) The Hemyock branch line, Devon, opened.
17/5/1876, Wednesday (-25,192) (Technology, Roads) Nikolaus August Otto patented the world’s first four-stroke internal combustion engine. However the patent office uncovered earlier work done on the fo9ur stroke cycle by Frenchman Alphonse Beau de Rochas in 1862. Oto’s patent was deemed invalid and others were free to use his idea. Karl Benz refined the four stroke engine and made it run not on gas but liquid fuel, kerosene or gasoline, thereby making the engine mobile.
8/5/1876. Monday (-25,201) The last Tasmanian aborigine, Truganini, died. She was 4 foot 3 inches tall, in her sixties, and was known as the Queen of the Aborigines. She saw her mother stabbed to death by white men and at 16 was herself raped by white convicts. She took to hanging around work camps, selling herself for a handful of tea and sugar. Then she met a white man whom she helped to record tribal customs. The coffin lowered into her grave was empty; the authorities feared body snatchers and buried her elsewhere.
7/5/1876, Sunday (-25,202) Samuel Courtauld, British industrialist and arts patron, was born in Braintree, Essex.
1/5/1876, Monday (-25,208) (1) Queen Victoria was proclaimed Empress of India.
(2) The Settle to Carlisle line, 73 miles, opened to passengers. The Cross Gates (Leeds) to Wetherby railway opened.
25/3/1876, Saturday (-25,245) The first international football match between Scotland and Wales at Glasgow, was won by Scotland, four-nil.
10/3/1876, Friday (-25,260) Alexander Graham Bell transmitted the first telephone message to his assistant, from 5 Exeter Place, Boston, Massachusetts. The words were ‘Come here Watson, I want you’.
7/3/1876. Tuesday (-25,263) The first telephone was patented by the American Alexander Graham Bell, who was born on 3/3/1847. Bell was just a few hours ahead of a similar patent by Elisha Gray.
3/3/1876, Friday (+25,267)
2/3/1876, Thursday (-25,268) Pope Pius X was born in Rome, as Eugenio Pacelli.
1/3/1876, Wednesday (-25,269) The Bury St Edmunds to Thetford railway, 12.75 miles, opened.
27/2/1876, Sunday (-25,272) Japan and Korea signed the Treaty of Kanghwa. Until 1873 Korea, governed by the xenophobic Regent Taewon-Gun, had rejected diplomatic approaches by Japan. In 1875 Japanese gunboats off Kanghwa Island, near Seoul, were fired upon by the Koreans. Japan used this incident to force closer commercial and political links with Korea, backed up by the Japanese Navy. The Treaty of Kanghwa encouraged Western powers to also seek closer links with Korea, ending its isolation and its status as a vassal state of China.
19/2/1876, Saturday (-25,280) Constantin Brancusi, sculptor, was born in Romania.
18/2/1876. Friday (-25,281) A direct telegraph link was set up between Britain and New Zealand.
2/2/1876, Wednesday (-25,297) The Welsh Football Association was formed.
31/1/1876, Monday (-25,299) (1) All American Indians were ordered to move to reservations.
(2) The ‘Andrassy Note’ (see 30/12/1875) was handed to the Ottoman Sultan in Constantinople. The Sultan promised, but did nothing.
14/1/1876, Friday (-25,316) Essex County Cricket Club was founded at a meeting at The Shire Hall, Chelmsford.
5/1/1876, Wednesday (-25,325) Konrad Adenauer, West German Chancellor, was born in Cologne.
1/1/1876, Saturday (-25,329) The Plimsoll Line became compulsory on all British-registered ships after this date. Its purpose was to prevent ships being dangerously overloaded. The modern Plimsoll Line was first proposed by James Hall of Tynemouth in a report of 7/12/.1869. However the Crusader ships employed a cross marked at the waterline for the same purpose, and the 12th century Republic of Venice also made it illegal to operate its ships without a form of the Plimsoll line. Hanseatic ships used the same load line but when the Hanseatic League ceased to exist in the 15th century this safety practice was lost.
30/12/1875, Thursday (-25,331) Russia, Germany, and Austro-Hungary agreed on the terms of a note to Constantinople calling for Ottoman Turkey to deliver on its promises of equality for Christians with Muslims and measures to protect Christians in the Balkans from persecution. This was the so-called ‘Andrassy Note’, see 31/1/1876.
27/11/1875. Saturday (-25,364) Britain bought Suez Canal shares. Britain bought nearly half the shares for £4million from the Khedive, or ruler, of Egypt. Disraeli, the British Prime Minister, was relieved to have prevented total French control of the Canal. When the Canal was built six years ago with French money and French expertise the British, under Gladstone, took no interest; now Britain accounts for 80% of the Canal traffic. On 15/11/1875 Disraeli learned that the Khedive owned 177,000 of the 400,000 shares but was on the verge of bankruptcy and wanted to sell, or at least mortgage the shares to a French syndicate. The British put pressure on the French syndicate who, without government help, pulled out, whilst Baron Lionel de Rothschild provided finance for the British to buy the shares for UK£ 4 million.
5/11/1875, Friday (-25,386) Blackburn Rovers football club was formed.
30/10/1875. Saturday (-25,392) In the USA, Mary Baker Eddy published Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, arguing that illness is illusory and laying the basis for Christian Science.
19/10/1875, Tuesday (-25,403) Sir Charles Wheatstone, English physicist who pioneered telegraphy, died in Paris.
27/9/1875, Monday (-25,425) The railway from Willingham to Doncaster (Lincolnshire) opened.
16/9/1875. Thursday (-25,436) Following the anti-Turkish uprising in Bosnia and Hercegovina on 29/7/1875, the Bulgarians rebelled against the Turks, led by Khristo Botev, in Stara Zagora.
9/9/1875, Thursday (-25,443) The Titley to Presteign railway opened.
1/9/1875. Wednesday (-25,451) Edgar Rice Burroughs, creator of Tarzan, was born in Chicago. He never visited Africa where his stories were set.
25/8/1875. Wednesday (-25,458) Matthew Webb, 27, from Shropshire, became the first person to swim the English Channel. He took 21 hours 45 minutes, using the breast-stroke, from Admiralty Pier, Dover, to Calais.
18/8/1875, Wednesday (-25,465) Somerset County Cricket Club was founded.
4/8/1875. Wednesday (-24,479) Hans Christian Andersen, the Danish writer famous for his fairy stories, died aged 70.
2/8/1875, Monday (-24,481) (1) The Settle and Carlisle railway opened.
(2) Britain’s first roller skating rink opened, in Belgravia, London.
31/7/1875, Saturday (-25,483) Andrew Johnson, American Democrat and 17th president from 1865 to 1869, died in Carter County, Tennessee.
29/7/1875. Thursday (-25,485) The peasants of the two mountain provinces of Bosnia and Hercegovina put up resistance to the Ottoman Turks. The Bosnians wanted to join Serbia but the Hercegovinians wanted to join Montenegro. See 16/9/1875.
28/7/1875, Wednesday (-25,486) Lewisham Town Hall, S London, officially opened. It was replaced by a new building in 1959.
26/7/1875, Monday (-25,488) Carl Jung, Swiss psychoanalyst, was born in Kesswil.
23/7/1875, Friday (-25,491) Isaac Singer, American inventor of the modern sewing machine, died in Torquay, Devon.
10/6/1875, Thursday (-25,534) The Masham, Yorkshire, branch line opened.
3/6/1875. Thursday (-25,541) Georges Bizet, French composer of the opera Carmen, died in Bougival near Paris.
17/5/1875, Monday (-25,558) The Kentucky Derby horse race, USA, was first run.
16/5/1875, Sunday (-25,559) Earthquake affected Colombia and Venezuela; 16,000 killed.
1/5/1875, Saturday (-25,574) Passenger services ceased on the Helsby to Mouldsworth railway (workmen’s trains continued until 1944). Northwich to Chester via Mouldsworth opened to passengers.
13/4/1875, Tuesday (-25,592) The Newport (Wales) Alexandra Docks branch opened.
8/4/1875, Thursday (-25,597) Albert I, King of Belgium, born.
1/4/1875, Thursday (-25,604) The Times became the first newspaper to publish a daily weather chart.
18/3/1875. Thursday (-25,618) Hawaii signed a treaty giving exclusive trading rights with the islands to the USA.
7/3/1875, Sunday (-25,629) Maurice Ravel, French composer, was born in Ciboure in the Basque Country.
1/3/1875. Monday (-25,635) The US Congress passed the Civil Rights Act, giving equal rights to all races in transport, theatres, inns, and juries.
9/2/1875, Tuesday (-25,655) The Hoosac rail tunnel USA, 7 km long, opened.
1/2/1875, Monday (-25,663) The Metropolitan Line, London, was extended from Moorgate to Liverpool Street.
26/1/1875, Tuesday (-25,669) The first battery electric powered dental drill was used. Mains-powered dental drills were not used until 1908.
26/12/1874. Saturday (-25,700) Boxing Day was first recognised as a Bank Holiday in the UK.
9/12/1874, Wednesday (-25,717) Ezra Cornell, US industrialist who founded Cornell University in Ithaca, died.
30/11/1874, Monday (-25,726) Sir Winston Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire.
18/11/1874. Wednesday (-25,738) In the USA, the National Women’s Christian Temperance Union was founded. Women would invade saloons and sing hymns and pray; the point being that drunkenness and ill-treatment of women often went together.
9/11/1874, Monday (-25,747) The railway from Bardney to Willingham, Lincolnshire, opened.
9/10/1874, Friday (-25,778) The Universal Postal Union was established, with its headquarters in Berne, Switzerland.
21/9/1874, Monday (-25,796) Gustav Holst, English composer, who wrote The Planets, was born in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, as Gustavus Theodore von Holst, of Swedish origin.
9/9/1874, Wednesday (-25,808) The railway between Earl’s Court and Hammersmith, London, opened.
30/8/1874. Sunday (-25,818) In Britain, the Factory Act limited the working week to 56.5 hours.
10/8/1874, Monday (-25,838) Herbert Hoover, Republican politician and 31st US President, 1929-33, was born in West Branch, Iowa, the son of a blacksmith.
29/7/1874, Wednesday (-25,850) The light railway from Barnstaple to Ilfracombe 14.75 miles, opened.
28/7/1874, Tuesday (-25,851) The railway from Helmsdale to Wick (60 miles), and from Georgemas to Thurso (6 3/4miles), opened in northern Scotland
20/7/1874, Monday (-25,859) The Evercreech to Bath railway opened. The railway from Helmsdale to Wick and Thurso opened.
16/7/1874, Thursday (-25,863) The Minehead branch railway opened.
6/7/1874, Monday (-25,873) The Sidmouth branch line opened (Sidmouth Junction via Tipton to Sidmouth).
15/6/1874, Monday (-25,894) The Bournemouth to Poole railway opened.
9/6/1874, Tuesday (-25,900) Cochise, Apache chief and war leader against White settlers, died.
1/6/1874, Monday (-25,908) Pullman carriages were introduced in Britain, by the Midland Railway, running between London and Bradford. The Otford to Maidstone East railway opened.
29/5/1874. Friday (-25,911) G K Chesterton, English writer, was born.
22/5/1874, Friday (-25,918) Daniel Malan, the South African politician who was responsible for the apartheid policy, was born in Riebeck West, Cape Province.
29/4/1874, Wednesday (-25,941) In Britain, the Cremation Society was formed.
25/4/1874, Saturday (-25,945) Guglielmo Marconi, Italian scientist and radio pioneer, was born in Bologna.
18/4/1874, Saturday (-25,952) David Livingstone’s remains were interred in Westminster Abbey. He died in Africa on 1/5/1873.
6/4/1874, Monday (-25,964) Harry Houdini, American magician and escapologist, was born in Appleton, Wisconsin, as Ehrich Weiss. He was the son of a rabbi from Budapest.
8/3/1874, Sunday (-25,993) Millard Fillimore, American Whig and 13th President from 1850 to 1853, died in Buffalo, New York State.
1/3/1874, Sunday (-26,000) Holborn Viaduct railway station opened.
23/2/1874, Monday (-26,006) Major Walker Wingfield patented the game of lawn tennis, under the name of ‘Sphairistike’, a version of the Greek for ‘playing ball’. Between July 1874 and June 1875, 1,050 of his tennis sets were sold.
17/2/1874, Tuesday (-26,013) William Gladstone left office as Prime Minister.
15/2/1874, Sunday (-26,014) Sir Ernest Shackleton, British Antarctic explorer, was born in born in Kilkee, County Clare, Eire.
4/2/1874, Wednesday (-26,025) The Battle of Kumasi ended the Second Ashanti War.
2/2/1874, Monday (-26,027) Liverpool Street Station, London, opened, replacing an earlier terminus at Shoreditch.
31/1/1874, Saturday (-26,029) Battle of Amoaful, Second Ashanti War.
17/1/1874. Saturday (-26,043) The original Siamese Twins, Chang and Eng Bunker, died within three hours of each other, aged 62. Chang and Eng meant Left and Right in Thailand, where they were born.
13/1/1874, Tuesday (-26,047) Conscription was introduced in Russia.
14/12/1873, Sunday (-26,077) Louis Agassiz, who developed the theory of Ice ages, died –see 28/5/1807, when born.
17/11/1873, Monday (-26,104) In London, the railway from Wood Street to Chingford also from Hackney Downs to St James Walthamstow was opened, see 26/4/1870.
14/11/1873, Friday (-26,107) The railway from Witney to Fairford opened.
1/11/1873, Thursday (-26,120) The railway from Wiveliscombe to Barnstaple opened.
29/10/1873. Wednesday (-26,123) King Albert of Saxony succeeded his father to the throne. He was born on 23/4/1828, and died on 10/6/1902.
1/10/1873, Wednesday (-26,151) Sir Edwin Landseer, painter, died in London.
16/9/1873. Tuesday (-26,166) The last German troops left France. An economic recovery of France had taken place, which was to enable it to build up its military forces. However a recession began in France from 1873 onwards.
6/9/1873, Saturday (-26,176) Austin Reed, men’s outfitter, was born in Newbury, Berkshire.
3/9/1873, Wednesday (-26,179) The Bristol to Radstock via Pensford railway opened.
26/8/1873, Tuesday (-26,187) Birth of Lee de Forest, inventor of the Audion vacuum tube which made broadcasting possible.
23/8/1873. Saturday (-26,190) The Albert Bridge across the Thames was opened.
1/8/1873. Friday (-26,212) (USA, Railways) The first street cable cars in the world were installed in San Francisco, on Clay Street Hill; the steep terrain made horse buses impractical. They were the invention of engineer Andrew Smith Hallidie, 37.
28/7/1873, Monday (-26,216) Skegness railway station opened; the line was extended from Firsby.
1/7/1873, Tuesday (-26,243) (1) Prince Edward Island was made part of the Dominion of Canada.
(2) The Stratford on Avon to Kineton railway opened. The Fenny Compton to Towcester railway opened.
27/6/1873, Friday (-26,247) The railway from Bourne End to Marlow opened.
26/6/1873, Thursday (-26,248) The Barrhead to Kilmarnock railway opened.
14/6/1873. Saturday (-26,260) King Priam’s treasure of 8,700 priceless pieces was discovered in Turkey by the German – American Heinrich Schliemann. In disinterring this treasure he destroyed what was left of ancient Troy.
24/5/1873, Saturday (-26,281) In north London, Alexandra Palace opened. Also on this day the branch railway from Highgate to Alexandra Palace via Muswell Hill opened.
23/5/1873. Friday (-26,282) The North West Mounted Police were established in Canada. Their name was changed to The Royal Canadian Mounted Police on 1 February 1920.
15/5/1873, Thursday (-26,290)
9/5/1873, Friday (-26,296) Howard Carter, who discovered Tutankhamen’s tomb in 1922, was born at Swaffham, Norfolk.
8/5/1873, Thursday (-26,297) The English economist and philosopher John Stuart Mill died.
5/5/1873, Monday (-26,300) The Midland Hotel, adjacent to St Pancras Station, London, opened. It closed in 1935 due to lack of custom and became railway offices.
30/4/1873. Wednesday (-26,305) The Scottish missionary and explorer David Livingstone died of malaria near Lake Bangweulu in Zambia, aged 60. He was found dead at Chitambo, kneeling in prayer by his bed. He had worked from age 10 to 24 in a cotton factory, and when aged 27 was ordained under the London Missionary Society. He discovered Victoria Falls when aged 41 and Lake Nyasa aged 46. He was buried on 18/4/1874 in Westminster Abbey.
2/4/1873. Wednesday (-26,333) British trains were fitted with toilets, but only in sleeping cars.
1/4/1873, Tuesday (-26,334) Sergei Rachmaninov, last of the great Russian romantic composers, was born in Oneg, Nijni Novgorod. He later settled in the USA.
24/3/1873, Monday (-26,342) The railway from Whitland to Llanfrynach opened.
22/3/1873, Saturday (-26,344) Slavery was abolished in Puerto Rico.
13/3/1873, Thursday (-26,353) The Scottish Football Association was formed at a meeting attended by representatives from eight clubs.
4/3/1873, Tuesday (-26,362) The New York Daily Graphic became the world’s first illustrated daily newspaper.
25/2/1873, Tuesday (-26,369) Enrico Caruso, Italian operatic tenor, was born in Naples.
14/1/1873, Tuesday (-26,411) The railway from Witney to Fairford opened.
9/1/1873. Thursday (-26,416) Napoleon III of France, nephew of Bonaparte, died in exile at Chislehurst, Kent, to where he had withdrawn following his defeat by the Prussians and his imprisonment at Wilhelshohe Castle.
1/1/1873, Wednesday (-26,424) (1) The extension line from Greenwich, SE London, to Maze Hill opened.
(2) The cities of Pest, Buda and Obuda were merged to form Budapest.
13/12/1872, Friday (-26,443) Haenlein fitted the first internal combustion engine to an airship. However the craft only made a tethered display and further development was shelved for lack of funds.
5/12/1872. Thursday (-26,451) The Marie Celeste was spotted drifting, crewless, in the Atlantic near The Azores, and was boarded by the crew of the Dei Gratia. The 206 ton Marie Celeste had left New York on 7/11/1872, captained by Benjamin Briggs, with his wife, daughter and eight crew on its way to Genoa, with a cargo of 1,700 barrels of alcohol, which was found intact. The lifeboat was missing but the captain’s table was set for a meal that was never eaten.
30/11/1872, Saturday (-26,456) The first football international took place at Partick, Glasgow; Scotland and England drew 0 – 0.
23/11/1872. Saturday (-26,463) Australia was connected by undersea cable to the rest of the world. The cable ran from Darwin in the north to Java, and also into southern Australia.
9/11/1872. Saturday (-26,477) A great fire broke out in the commercial district of Boston, USA, on the Saturday night. It burned until Sunday 10th, and destroyed 767 buildings filled with merchandise. 14 lives and an estimated US$75million of goods were lost. Very little residential property was lost and the commercial district was soon rebuilt with better buildings and straighter roads.
7/11/1872, Thursday (-26,479) The 282 ton brigantine Marie Celeste set sail from New York on her ill-fated journey.
5/11/1872. Tuesday (-26,481) Ulysses S Grant was elected President of the USA for a second term.
15/10/1872. Tuesday (-26,502) University College of Wales founded at Aberystwyth.
14/10/1872, Monday (-26,503) The Yokohama to Shinagawa line was extended to Tokyo.
13/9/1872, Friday (-26,534) Work began on the St Gotthard railway tunnel.
15/8/1872, Thursday (-26,563) The Watlington to Princes Risborough railway opened.
3/8/1872, Saturday (-26,575) King Haakon VII of Norway was born in Charlottenlund. He refused to surrender to the Germans in World War Two.
22/7/1872, Monday (-26,587) In London, the railway from Stoke Newington to Edmonton was opened, see 27/5/1872.
18/7/1872. Thursday (-26,591) (1) The railway from Bideford to Torrington (Devon) opened.
(2) Britain passed the Ballot Act, providing for secret ballots at elections.
16/7/1872, Tuesday (-26,593) Roald Amundsen, Norwegian explorer who was the first to reach the South Pole in 1911, was born in Borge.
9/7/1872. Tuesday (-26,600) John Blondel patented the first doughnut cutter in America. A sea captain, he is said to have invented the hole so he could slip the doughnut over the handle of the ship’s wheel and enjoy his snack whilst steering.
4/7/1872, Thursday (-26,605) Calvin Coolidge, American Republican and 30th President, was born in Plymouth, Vermont. He was the son of a storekeeper.
1/7/1872, Monday (-26,608) (1) Louis Bleriot, French aviation pioneer, was born.
(2) The Albert Memorial in Hyde Park, London, was unveiled by Queen Victoria.
12/6/1872, Wednesday (-26,627) The first railway in Japan opened; Yokohama to Shinagawa.
11/6/1872, Tuesday (-26,628) The stocks were last used as an official form of punishment in Britain. Their last recorded use was at Adpar, west Wales.
10/6/1872, Monday (-10,629) The Bedford to Northampton via Olney railway opened.
9/6/1872, Sunday (-26,630) Peter I, Tsar of Russia, was born.
5/6/1872, Wednesday (-26,634)
1/6/1872, Saturday (-26,638) The railway from Blisworth to Cockley Brake Junction (nr Farthinghoe) opened.
31/5/1872, Friday (-26,639) The illustrator and cartoonist Heath Robinson was born. He was famous for his drawings of absurdly complicated machinery performing simple tasks.
27/5/1872, Monday (-26,643) In London, the railway from Bethnal Green to Stoke Newington was opened, see 22/7/1872
22/5/1872. Wednesday (-26,648) In Germany, the foundation stone of the Bayreuth Theatre was laid. It was built specially for the performance of Wagner’s works.
18/5/1872. Saturday (-26,652) Bertrand Russell, philosopher, mathematician, nuclear disarmer, and Nobel Prize winner for literature, was born at Ravenscroft, near Trelleck, Monmouthshire, Wales.
1/5/1872, Wednesday (-26,669) The Totnes to Ashburton railway opened.
2/4/1872, Tuesday (-26,698) Samuel Morse, American inventor of the Morse Code for telegraphy, died in New York City aged 80.
1/4/1872, Monday (-26,699) The railway from Finchley to High Barnet, north London, opened.
16/3/1872, Saturday (-26,715) The first English FA Cup Final took place at the Oval. Wanderers, made up of ex public school and university men, beat the Royal Engineers 1-0.
10/3/1872, Sunday (-26,721) Guiseppe Mazzini, Italian revolutionary who fought for his country’s unity and independence, died in Pisa.
1/3/1872, Friday (-26,730) The first National Park in America, and its largest, Yellowstone National Park, was established.
8/2/1872, Thursday (-26,752) Lord Mayo, British Viceroy to India, was murdered by nationalists.
12/1/1872, Friday (-26,779) Yohannas IV crowned King of Ethiopia.
1/1/1872, Monday (-26,790) The railway between Mold and Brymbo, north Wales, opened.
19/12/1871. Tuesday (-26,803) The city of Birmingham, Alabama, was incorporated. In 1870 the site of Birmingham was a cotton field crossed by two railways. Birmingham was founded by a land company backed by the railways.
14/12/1871, Thursday (-26,808) Henry Hudson, British railway developer, died. He was a speculative capitalist based in York, and financed the East Coast Line and the North Midland Railway. He was eventually disgraced for financial fiddling.
4/12/1871. Monday (-26,818) Germany adopted the mark as its currency unit.
10/11/1871. Friday (-26,842) Historic meeting of explorer and missionary David Livingstone (born 19/3/1813, in Blantyre, Lanarkshire) with Sir Henry Morton Stanley at Ujiji (now in Tanzania). Livingstone died on 1/5/1873.
2/11/1871, Thursday (-26,850) In Britain, systematic photographing of convicted prisoners began. This was the start of the ‘rogue’s gallery’.
1/11/1871, Wednesday (-26,851) The railway from Huyton to St Helens opened.
27/10/1871. Friday (-26,856) In South Africa, Britain annexed the diamond-rich region of Griqualand West.
24/10/1871. Tuesday (-26,859) (1) In Los Angeles, 19 Chinese were killed in anti-Chinese riots.
(2) The Aurora Borealis was seen as far south as southern England.
18/10/1871, Wednesday (-26,865) Charles Babbage, pioneer of computing, died.
11/10/1871, Wednesday (-26,872) The Great Fire of Chicago ended.
8/10/1871. Sunday (-26,875) The Great Fire of Chicago started, killing 300 people. 90,000 were made homeless and US$ 200 million damage was done. The fire ended on 11/10/1871; it was supposedly started in Mrs O’Leary’s barn in De Koven Street, by a cow upsetting a lantern. Four square miles of the city were destroyed, as a long spell of dry weather had made buildings tinder-dry.
2/10/1871, Monday (-26,881) Mormon leader Brigham Young was arrested for bigamy.
18/9/1871, Monday (-29,895) The railway from Nunhead through Brockley to Lewisham opened.
17/9/1871, Sunday (-26,896) The 14 km Mont Cenis Tunnel, carrying the main railway from Lyons to Turin, was opened.
1/9/1871, Friday (-26,912) Nunhead railway station, S London, opened.
30/8/1871, Wednesday (-26,914) Lord Rutherford, British scientist noted in the field of atomic research, was born in Spring Grove, near Nelson, South Island, New Zealand.
19/8/1871. Saturday (-26,925) Orville Wright, American aviation pioneer, was born in Dayton, Ohio, the younger of two brothers.
30/7/1871. Sunday (-26,945) In New York, an explosion on the Staten Island ferry killed 72 and injured 135.
13/7/1871, Thursday (-26,962) The first cat show took place. It was held at Crystal Palace, London, organised by Harrison Weir.
12/7/1871. Wednesday (-26,963) In New York, 31 civilians and 2 policemen were dead after fighting between Scots/Irish Presbyterians and Irish Catholics.
8/7/1871. Saturday (-26,967) Bismarck launched a cultural offensive against the Catholic Church, abolishing the Catholic Department for Spiritual Affairs.
4/7/1871. Tuesday (-26,971) Russian troops occupied the Ili area of Chinese Turkestan.
3/7/1871, Monday (-26,972) The London Underground (District Line) railway from Blackfriars to Mansion House opened.
29/6/1871. Thursday (-26,976) In Britain, the Trades Union Act granted legal status to unions.
27/6/1871. Tuesday (-26,978) Japan adopted the yen as a new currency.
19/6/1871, Monday (-26,986) The railway from Golspie to Helmsdale opened.
18/6/1871, Sunday (-26,987) The Test Act allowed students at Oxford and Cambridge universities to gain degrees and fellowships without subscribing to any particular religion.
17/6/1871, Saturday (-26,988) James Weldon Johnson, Black civil rights leader, was born in Jacksonville, Florida.
9/6/1871, Friday (-26,996)
8/6/1871, Thursday (-26,997) The railway from Taunton to Wiveliscombe opened.
3/6/1871. Saturday (-27,002) London gained direct communication with Shanghai via an undersea cable laid via San Francisco.
1/6/1871, Thursday (-27,004) The railway from Fenny Compton to Kineton opened.
29/5/1871, Monday (-27,007) Whit Monday, became the first Bank Holiday in Britain.
28/5/1871, Sunday (-27,008) The Paris Commune, set up on 28/3/1871, was brutally suppressed by French government troops. Urban warfare in Paris had killed 33,000 and left sections of the city in ruins. Other Communes in Lyons and Marseilles had also collapsed. The Paris Communards had failed to adequately man a fort defending the west of Paris.
27/5/1871, Saturday (27,009)
26/5/1871, Friday (-27,010) Ismailia was annexed to Egypt.
25/5/1871. Thursday (-27,011) The House of Commons passed the Bank Holiday Act, creating public holidays on Easter Monday, Whit Monday, and Christmas Day. Monday.
21/5/1871, Sunday (-27,015) The Treaty of Frankfurt was ratified.
10/5/1871. Wednesday (-27,026) Germany and France signed a peace treaty at Frankfurt. France surrendered all of Alsace and most of Lorraine to Germany. France also had to pay an indemnity of 5 billion francs to Germany, the equivalent amount that Napoleon I imposed on Prussia in 1807; a German army was to remain in France till this is paid. The British Prime Minister, Gladstone, protested that Alsace and Lorraine should not be handed over without a vote by the people living there. Prussia’s Prime Minister, Bismarck, placed no limit in the treaty on the size of France’s future army, gambling that France was already isolated and humbled by her defeat at Sedan.
10/4/1871, Monday (-27,056) The London railway between Wapping and Shoreditch opened.
1/4/1871, Saturday (-27,065) The Wood Green to Enfield Chase railway opened.
29/3/1871. Wednesday (-27,068) Queen Victoria opened the Royal Albert Hall in London; named in memory of Prince Albert. The Hall was intended as a cultural centre following on from the success of the Great Exhibition of 1851. The original plan was to have an auditorium seating 30,000 but due to financial difficulties they ended up with an oval hall with a glass and iron dome with 7,000 seats. The foundation stone was laid on 20/5/1867.
28/3/1871, Tuesday (-27,069) French proletarian radicals proclaimed a ‘Paris Commune’, backed by intellectuals and workers, hoping to exploit popular discontent at France’s humiliating loss of Alsace-Lorraine to Germany. The French Government fled to Versailles. See 28/5/1871.
27/3/1871. Monday (-27,070) The first international rugby match was played between Scotland and England at Edinburgh; Scotland won.
25/3/1871, Saturday (-27,072) The American sculptor, Gutzon Borglum, was born near Bear Lake, Idaho.
18/3/1871, Saturday (-27,079) The Commune insurrection against the French Government began in Paris.
5/3/1871, Sunday (-27,092) Rosa Luxemburg, German Socialist leader and founder of the left-wing Spartacus movement, was born.
26/2/1871. Sunday (-27,099) Prussia and France signed a preliminary peace treaty at Versailles.
17/2/1871, Friday (-28,108) The Pact of Bordeaux was signed.
16/2/1871, Thursday (-28,109) The French fortress of Belfort capitulated to the Germans.
28/1/1871. Saturday (-27,128) Starving and surrounded by Prussian troops, Paris surrendered to Germany. During the 5-month siege, balloons were used to maintain contact with the rest of France. The Prussians tried to shoot the balloons down, so the French switched to night flights. Finally, a 3-week artillery bombardment destroyed all resistance. All the animals at Paris Zoo had been eaten (which one was eaten last?).
26/1/1871. Thursday (-27,130) The Rugby Football Union was founded in London, England, by 20 clubs.
19/1/1871, Thursday (-27,137) Germany defeated the French at the Battle of St Quentin.
17/1/1871, Tuesday (-27,139) David Earl Beatty, British Admiral and Fleet Commander in World War One, was born in Nantwich, Cheshire.
15/1/1871, Thursday (-27,144) Battle of Lisaine, near Belfort; Germany defeated France.
10/1/1871, Tuesday (-27,146) The Battle of Le Mans began; Germany defeated France.
9/1/1871, Monday (-27,147) The Battle of Beaugency, near Orleans; Germany defeated France. Germany advanced towards Tours.
8/1/1871. Sunday (-27,148) Prussian troops bombarded Paris.
2/1/1871, Monday (-27,154) Germany defeated France at the Battle of Baupame.
25/12/1870, Sunday (-27,162) The Mont Cenis Tunnel through the Alps, 12.9 km long, was completed (work began 1857) when the tunnelers met in the middle.
23/12/1870, Friday (-27,164) Germany defeated France at the Battle of Hallue, near Amiens. German forces now advanced south west towards Rouen.
12/12/1870. Monday (-27,175) Joseph H Rainey became the first Black member of the House of Representatives in the USA. The Reverend Hiram H Revels became the first Black member of the Senate in February 1871.
5/12/1870, Monday (-27,182) The Garstang to Knott End railway opened.
2/12/1870, Friday (-27,185) Germany defeated France at the Battle of Loigny, near Orleans.
28/11/1870. Monday (-27,189) The Germans in the Franco-German War took Amiens.
9/11/1870, Wednesday (-27,208) The Battle of Coulmiers, near Orleans; France defeated Germany.
4/11/1870, Friday (-27,213) Derbyshire County Cricket club was founded at a meeting in the Guildhall, Derby.
3/11/1870. Thursday (-27,214) (1) In Britain, the photographing of every prisoner was made compulsory. A photograph had been successfully used on a ‘wanted’ poster in 1861.
(2) The Prussians besieged Belfort, 275 miles ESE of Paris. The siege continued until the armistice of 15/2/1871.
27/10/1870. Thursday (-27,221) The French at Metz, 140,000 troops, surrendered to Prussia after a 2-month seige. In November 1870 the southern German states of Wurttemberg and Bavaria joined with the North German Confederation, ensuring Prussian political hegemony.
12/10/1870, Wednesday (-27,236) Robert E Lee, US Confederate General during the Civil War, died in Lexington, Virginia.
7/10/1870, Friday (-27,241) Gambetta, French Minister of the Interior, escaped the siege of Paris in a balloon. Reaching the safety of Tours, he encouraged the French troops.
2/10/1870. Sunday (-27,246) In a plebiscite, the Papal States voted to unite with Italy. The capital of Italy was moved from Florence to Rome. This was under the reign of Pope Pius IX.
1/10/1870. Saturday (-27,247) The first British halfpenny stamp was introduced, for pre-paid postcards.
28/9/1870. Wednesday (-27,250) Strasbourg, under siege by Prussia since August 1870, was surrendered by the French.
26/9/1870, Monday (-27,252) King Christian X of Denmark was born.
23/9/1870, Friday (-27,255) The French defenders, surrounded and under siege in Paris, succeeded in sending a balloon out with 227 pounds of mail. It passed over and beyond Prussian lines, giving news to the French provisional Government at Tours. The balloon was piloted by James Durouf.
20/9/1870. Tuesday (-27,258) Taking advantage of the French defeat at Sedan, Italian troops under Victor Emmanuel II entered Rome and expelled the Papal troops. Garibaldi had made several attempts to take Rome with his people’s army, the last in 1867, but had been defeated by the French. Now however Napoleon III had his troops away from Rome to fight the Prussians. There was little resistance from Rome; the walls were shelled, and breached at Porta Pia, and only a few lives were lost.
19/9/1870. Monday (-27,259) Siege of Paris by the Germans began.
6/9/1870. Tuesday (-27,272) The last British troops serving in Australia were withdrawn.
4/9/1870. Sunday (-27,274) France formed a Republic (The Third Republic) and a government of national defence was formed.
2/9/1870. Friday (-27,276) Napoleon III of France capitulated to Prussia at Sedan. Fighting had lasted 44 days, and the 380,000 strong Prussian army had triumphed over the 235,0000 strong French army. Only a hastily assembled French National Guard stood between the Prussians and Paris. Empress Eugenie and the prince imperial fled to England. Napoleon III was held as prisoner in the comfortable royal apartments of Wilhelmshohe Castle. The French had sent a force to relieve their main Army besieged at Metz but this army, 84,000 men, 2,700 officers, 39 generals, surrendered to Prussia.
1/9/1870, Thursday (-27,277) (1) The Battle of Sedan; the Germans defeated the French.
(2) The siege of Metz began.
31/8/1870, Wednesday (-27,278) Maria Montessori, who developed the Montessori system for teaching children, died.
30/8/1870, Tuesday (-27,279) Battle of Beaumont; Germany defeated France.
18/8/1870. Thursday (-27,291) Prussian forces defeated the French at the Battle of Gravelotte.
16/8/1870, Tuesday (-27,293) The French lost to the Prussians at the Battle of Vionville.
14/8/1870. Sunday (-27,295) John Galsworthy, English author, was born in Combe, Surrey. When his Forsyte Saga was dramatised on BBC TV on Sundays in the 1960s, clergymen had to change times of their evening service to get a congregation.
13/8/1870, Saturday (-27,296) Germany defeated France at the Battle of Noisseville.
10/8/1870, Wednesday (-27,299) The railway from Dingwall to Strome Ferry opened.
6/8/1870, Saturday (-27,303) Battle of Froeschwiller, in NE France; Germany defeated France.
4/8/1870. Thursday (-27,305) (1) Germany defeated France at the Battle of Wissembourg, in NE France.
(2) The British Red Cross was founded by Lord Wantage.
2/8/1870, Tuesday (-27,307) Prussia had mobilised rapidly and now had 380,000 troops on the French border.
1/8/1870. Monday (-27,308) Britain passed the Irish Land Act, providing compensation for Irish tenant farmers evicted from their land.
24/7/1870. Sunday (-27,316) The first transcontinental train arrived in New York from San Francisco.
19/7/1870. Tuesday (-27,321) France declared war on Prussia. The origins of this war lay in the vacancy of the Spanish throne, which the French regarded as their sphere of influence. There was a Hohenzollern (German) candidate for the Spanish throne, and Napoleon III demanded, not only the withdrawal of the Hozenhollern claim to the Spanish throne, but the guarantee from Germany never again to claim this position. In the Ems telegram of 13/7/1870 the Prussian King, in Ems, wrote to Bismarck declining to give such a guarantee.
France was unprepared for war and its army disorganised, and within a month the main French Army was besieged at Metz. See 2/9/1870.
18/7/1870. Monday (-27,322) Pope Pius IX obtained a declaration from the Vatican General Council that the papacy was infallible in all its pronouncements, per se and not by virtue of the assent of the Church.
16/7/1870, Saturday (-27,324)
14/7/1870, Thursday (-27,326) David Farragut, US naval hero of the Civil War, died in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
13/7/1870, Wednesday (-27,327) Victoria Embankment, London, constructed by Sir J W Bazalgette, was opened by the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII.
9/7/1870. Saturday (-27,331) The Elementary Education act was passed in the UK, giving compulsory free education to every child in England and Wales.
1/7/1870, Friday (-27,339) The Winsford & Over branch line, from Cuddington, opened to passengers.
25/6/1870, Saturday (-27,345) Queen Isabella of Spain abdicated.
22/6/1870, Wednesday (-27,348) (1) The US Department of Justice was established.
(2) The railway from Mouldsworth to Helsby opened to passengers.
9/6/1870, Thursday (-27,361) Charles Dickens, born 7/2/1812 at Landport, Portsmouth, died at Godshill, near Rochester, Kent, of a brain haemorrhage the previous evening.
30/5/1870, Monday (-27,371) The London Underground (District Line) railway from Westminster to Blackfriars opened.
24/5/1870, Tuesday (-27,377) Jan Christian Smuts, South African soldier and Prime Minister, was born in Malmesbury, Cape Colony.
12/5/1870, Thursday (-27,389) Manitoba, previously called the Red River Colony and controlled by the Hudson Bay Company, was bought by Canada and made a province.
2/5/1870, Monday (-27,399) The direct connection railway, Farnham to Woking, opened.
26/4/1870, Tuesday (-27,405) In London, the railway from Lea Bridge to Wood Street opened, see 17/11/1873.
22/4/1870, Friday (-27,409) Vladimir Illyich Lenin, Russian Communist leader, was born in Simbirsk (now Ulyanovsk), as Vladimir Ilyitch Ulyanov, the son of a schools inspector.
26/2/1870, Saturday (-27,464) The first underground railway in the USA opened, in New York.
9/2/1870, Wednesday (-27,481) The United States weather service was published.
7/2/1870, Monday (-27,483) Birth of Alfred Adler, the psychoanalyst who introduced the concept of the inferiority complex.
3/2/1870, Thursday (-27,487) (Race equality, USA) In the US, the Fifteenth Amendment gave every US citizen, regardless of race, the right to vote.
2/2/1870. Wednesday (-27,488) The press agencies Reuters, Havas, and Wolff signed an agreement whereby they could cover the world’s news between them.
1/2/1870, Tuesday (-27,489) The Chesterfield to Sheffield via Dore railway opened.
10/1/1870. Monday (-27,511) John D Rockerfeler and his brother William founded the Standard Oil Company of Ohio, later known as Esso.
3/1/1870, Monday (-27,518) Work began on the Brooklyn – New York bridge over the East River.
10/12/1869. Friday (-27,542) Wyoming became the first USA State to grant women the vote.
7/12/1869, Tuesday (-27,545) The East London Railway opened from New Cross Gate to Wapping.
1/12/1869, Wednesday (-27,551) The St Helens to Wigan railway opened.
23/11/1869, Tuesday (-27,559) Valdemar Poulson, Danish inventor of the tape recorder, was born.
17/11/1869. Wednesday (-27,565) The Suez Canal was opened after 10 years of construction. The 100-mile canal, from Port Said to Port Tewfik, 26 feet deep, with bays and use of lakes to provide passing places for ships and avoid the need for locks, was designed by Ferdinand De Lesseps. The distance from London to Bombay by sea was reduced from 11,220 to 6,332 miles. The Canal concession was granted to de Lesseps by Said Pasha, after whom Port Said is named. The cost was 400million francs, ten times the original estimate. See 25/4/1859. By 1875 Britain was the largest shareholder in the Canal. In 1870 there were 486 transits, and in 1966/67, 20,326 transits. President Nasser nationalised the Canal in 1956, see 29/10/1956.
11/11/1869, Thursday (-27,571) Victor Emmanuel III, King of Italy, was born.
6/11/1869, Saturday (-27,576) Blackfriars Bridge, London, opened.
19/10/1869, Tuesday (-27,594) the first railway in Romania opened; Bucharest to Giurgiu.
16/10/1869, Saturday (-27,597) Girton College, the oldest women’s college in Cambridge, was opened.
8/10/1869, Friday (-27,605) Franklin Pearce, US Democrat and 14th President from 1853 to 1857, died in Concord, New Hampshire.
2/10/1869, Saturday (-27,611) Mahatma Ghandi, Indian nationalist leader, was born in Porbandar, Gujarat.
1/10/1969, Friday (-27,612) Austria issued the world’s first official post card.
24/9/1869, Friday (-27,619) An American financial disaster, ‘Black Friday’, occurred when a shrewd and unscrupulous investor, Jay Gould, attempted to corner the gold market.
12/9/1869, Sunday (-27,631) The Mold to Denbigh railway, north Wales, opened.
10/8/1869, Tuesday (-27,664)
15/7/1869. Thursday (-27,690) Hippolyte Mege Mouries of Paris patented margarine in France.
5/7/1869, Monday (-27,700) The Meltham branch railway, Huddersfield, opened.
26/6/1869, Saturday (-27,709) Southwark Park was opened to the public; it cost £55,000.
17/6/1869 Thursday (-27,718) Wilhelmshaven, Germany’s first military port, was officially inaugurated.
16/6/1869, Wednesday (-27,719) Charles Sturt, British explorer who ventured into the Australian interior to discover the Darling and Lower Murray Rivers, died aged 74 in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
15/6/1869, Tuesday (-27,720) A thermoplastic called celluloid, a technically-improved version of the plastic invented by the British chemist Alexander Parkes, was patented by American inventor John Wesley Hyatt of Albany, New York.
10/5/1869. Monday (-27,756) The first railroad across the USA from east to west, 1,776 miles long, was completed after three years work at a ceremony west of Ogden, in Utah. The Union Pacific Line finally met with the Central Pacific Line. Both companies raced to lay as much track as possible as they converged, spurred on by government payments of US$16,000 per mile, more for mountainous areas. A golden spike was driven in at Promontory Point, Utah, where the railways met.
3/5/1869, Monday (-27,763) The Great Western opened a goods station below Smithfield Market, connected to Paddington via the Metropolitan Line.
1/5/1869, Saturday (-27,765) The railway between Lostwithiel and Fowey, Cornwall opened.
9/4/1869, Friday (-27,787) The Hudson Bay Company ceded its territory to Canada.
29/3/1869, Monday (-27,798) Sir Edward Lutyens, British architect, was born in London.
18/3/1869, Thursday (-27,809) Neville Chamberlain, British Conservative Prime Minister 1937 to 1940 was born in Birmingham.
14/3/1869, Sunday (-27,813) The third Maori rebellion in 15 years ended with the defeat of the rebel leader, Titokowaru.
10/3/1869, Wednesday (-27,817) The first scientifically-designed cremator was used, in Padua, Italy, by Dr L Brunetti to cremate the body of a 35-year-old woman.
8/3/1869. Monday (-27,819) The French composer Berlioz died in Paris.
1/3/1869, Monday (-27,826) London’s Metropolitan railway, opened 10/1/1863 and operating on both broad and standard gauge, changed to standard gauge only.
27/2/1869. Saturday (-27,828) The US passed the 15th amendment, entitling all southern Black citizens to vote. No State could be admitted to the Union without ratifying this amendment. However poll tax and literacy qualifications could still be used to debar Black people from voting, and the Klu Klux Klan intimidated many Black people from claiming their rights.
22/2/1869, Monday (-27,833) The railway from Bishops Stortford to Braintree opened.
8/1/1869, Friday (-27,878) Russian priest Grigory Rasputin was born, to parents Yefim and Anna in Pokrivskoe.
1/1/1869, Friday (-27,885) (1) A railway was opened from Kingston on Thames to New Malden, giving a more direct route to London, see 1/7/1863.
(2) A short line connecting Herne Hill with Tulse Hill, S London, opened.
(3) The Gunnersbury to Richmond line opened.
24/12/1868, Thursday (-27,893) The London Underground (District Line) railway from Gloucester Road to Westminster opened.
10/12/1868. Thursday (-27,907) (1) London’s first traffic lights were installed in Parliament Square, Westminster, to help MPs get to the House of Commons. The lights were like a railway signal, and operated by gas; they later exploded, killing a policeman. The lights were removed in 1872 and traffic lights were not used again until 3/8/1926.
(2) The first edition of Whitakers Almanack was published.
9/12/1868. Wednesday (-27,908) Following a Liberal General Election victory, William Ewart Gladstone formed the next UK government, defeating Disraeli. This was the first of Gladstone’s four terms of office as Prime Minister.
27/11/1868, Friday (-27,920) Lieutenant Colonel George Custer and his 7th cavalry attacked the village of Cheyenne Indian chief Black Kettle. The Indians had been resisting the building of a railway in their territory.
24/11/1868, Tuesday (-27,923) London’s Smithfield Market was opened by the Lord Mayor.
20/11/1868, Friday (-27,927) The foundation stone of the Albert Hall, London, was laid by Queen Victoria.
8/11/1868, Sunday (-27,939) Viscount Lee of Fareham, who gave the Buckinghamshire country house Chequers to the nation in 1921, was born.
6/11/1868. Friday (-27,941) Oglala Sioux Indians, led by Chief Red Cloud, signed a peace treaty with General William Sherman, representing the US Government, at Fort Laramie. This ended 2 years of fighting between Indians and gold miners.
3/11/1868. Tuesday (-27,944) Ulysses S Grant, ultimate commander of the Union armies in the Civil War, was elected president of the USA.
21/10/1868, Wednesday (-27,957) (1) Sir Ernest Swinton, one of the inventors of the military tank, was born in Bamgalore, India.
(2) San Francisco was devastated by an earthquake, causing US$3million damage.
7/10/1868, Wednesday (27,971) A non-stop stage coach covered the 2,600 miles from St Louis to Los Angeles in a record 20 days.
1/10/1868, Thursday (-27,977) (1) In London, St Pancras station, terminus of the Midland Railway, was formally opened. The line from Bedford via Luton and St Albans to St Pancras opened.
(2) The branch lines from Streatham to Wimbledon, forking north and south at Tooting, were opened. See 3/3/1929. The route from London via Balham and Mitcham (Junction) to Sutton opened.
(3) The London Underground railway from Paddington to Gloucester road was opened.
(4) The railway from Peckham Rye through Tulse Hill, S London, opened. The railway from Gunness through Scunthorpe to Barnetby opened.
(5) Mongkut, King of Siam, died aged 64. In his 17-year reign he made considerable reforms, with Western help. His decision to roll back centuries of isolation was taken during his travels as a Buddhist monk for 27 years. In 1863 France had forced him to relinquish his vassal state of Cambodia, which became a French protectorate.
23/9/1868, Wednesday (-27,985) The railway between Aylesbury and Verney Junction opened. Verney Junction was so isolated it was named after the locals landowner.
13/8/1868, Thursday (-28,026) A major earthquake killed over 25,000 people and devastated four cities in Peru and Ecuador.
4/8/1868, Tuesday (-28,035) The Bala to Dolgellau railway opened.
1/8/1868, Saturday (-28,038) The Llandrillo to Bala Junction railway opened.
29/7/1858, Wednesday (-28,041) US diplomat Townsend Harris persuaded Japan to grant further trade privileges to the USA.
25/7/1868. Saturday (-27,045) President Johnson signed an Act creating the territory of Wyoming
21/7/1868, Tuesday (-27,049) The railway from Seven Sisters through Crouch End to Gospel Oak opened.
20/7/1868, Monday (-27,050) Miron Cristea, Prime Minister of Romania, was born.
12/7/1868, Sunday (-27,058) The Scottish Reform Act was passed.
9/7/1868, Thursday (-27,061) (Race Equality, USA) The US passed the Fourteenth Amendment, during the period of ‘reconstruction’ following the conclusion of the Civil War. It guaranteed equality before the law for Blacks and Whites alike, specifically including ex-slaves here, and prohibited any State from ‘abridging their privileges’ or denying them ‘equal protection of the laws’. However, due to the fact that corporations are also ‘persons’ before the law, the 14th Amendment began to be used for purposes it was not intended for. The 14th Amendment was used to shield companies from government regulation, and even, before the 1950s, to justify racial discrimination because it contained the words ‘separate but equal’. Later, in the 1980s, it was still being used to block so-called ‘positive discrimination in favour of racial minorities.
4/7/1868, Saturday (-27,066) The last resistance in Japan by pro-Tokugawa forces ceased, as they were defeated at the Battle of Ueno, near Edo (eastern capital), now known as Tokyo.
6/6/1868, Saturday (-28,094) Robert Falcon Scott, British explorer of the Antarctic, was born near Devonport, Devon.
2/6/1868, Tuesday (-28,098) The first Trades Union Congress was held in Manchester. It lasted until 6/6/1868.
1/6/1868, Monday (-28,099) James Buchanan, American Democrat and 15th President from 1857 to 1861, and the only bachelor President, died in Wheatland, near Lancaster, Pennsylvania, aged 77.
26/5/1868, Tuesday (-28,105) The last public execution in Britain took place outside Newgate Prison. Michael Barrett, the hanged man, had murdered 12 people with a bomb.
23/5/1868, Saturday (-28,108) Kit Carson, US soldier and fur trapper who did much to open up the West to White settlers, died (born 24/12/1809).
18/5/1868, Monday (-28,113) Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia, was born, the son of Alexander III.
13/5/1868, Wednesday (-28,118) The railway from Barnard Castle to Middleton in Teesdale opened.
1/5/1868, Friday (-28,130) The railway from Chislehurst via Sevenoaks to Tonbridge opened. The Spilsby branch, Lincolnshire, opened.
21/4/1868, Tuesday (-28,140) In the UK, a Bill to abolish capital punishment, introduced by Mr Gilpin MP, was defeated by 127 votes to 23.
13/4/1868, Monday (-28,148), (1) The London Underground line from Baker Street to Swiss Cottage opened. (-28,148)
(2) Magdala, Abyssinia, was finally taken by the British.
(3) The railway from Bonar Bridge to Golspie opened.
6/4/1868, Monday (-28,155) The Japanese Government under Emperor Meiji issued a general policy statement known as the Charter Oath, following the overthrow of the Tokugawa Shogunate. This Oath declared that ancient feudal social ranks and other practices would be eliminated from Japanese society, and that a programme of modernisation based on Western values would be followed.
28/3/1868. Saturday (-28,164) The Earl of Cardigan, who led the Charge of the Light Brigade (25/10/1854) to disaster at Balaclava, in the Crimean War, died. He is best remembered for the woollen garment named after him.
26/3/1868, Thursday (-28,166) King Fuad I of Egypt was born.
16/3/1868, Monday (-28,176) The Seaton branch line opened.
14/3/1868, Saturday (-28,178) London’s Milwall Docks opened.
29/2/1868, Saturday (-28,192) Ex-King Louis of Bavaria died in Munich, aged 81. Louis was a patron of the arts and his capital, Munich, was a centre of culture. Louis had an affair with an Irish dancer, Marie Gilbert (stage name Lola Montez). This affair provoked a revolution; Louis had to abdicate in 1848, and Marie died destitute in new York in 1861, aged 43.
25/2/1868, Tuesday (-28,196) Andrew Johnson, 17th US President 1865-69, was impeached.
17/2/1868. Monday (-28,204) Ill health caused the resignation of the Conservative Prime Minister Lord Derby. He was succeeded by Benjamin Disraeli on 29/2/1868.
16/2/1868, Sunday (-28,205) The Churston to Brixham railway opened.
11/2/1868, Tuesday (-28,210) Jean Foucault, French physicist who invented the gyroscope and measured the speed of light, died in Paris.
8/1/1868, Wednesday (-28,244) Sir Frank Dyson, British astronomer, was born in Measham, then in Derbyshire.
3/1/1868, Friday (-28,249) The 16-year-old Emperor Meiji seized control of Japan from the Tokugawa Shogun, ending 700 years of military rule. Japan was now more open to the outside world.
1/1/1868. Wednesday (-28,251) In New York, Susan B Anthony began publication of a suffragist journal called The Revolution.
13/12/1867. Friday (-28,270) Twelve people died when Irish Fenian bombers blew up the outer wall of the Clerkenwell prison in London in an attempt to rescue a jailed colleague. In fact the bomb not only brought down the outer wall of the prison but wrecked a row of houses opposite, killing 12 and injuring 120. They failed to release the prisoner. The Fenians also attempted to set off a bomb in Manchester. The Fenians, who originated in the USA, were named after Finn McCool, leader of a legendary band of 3rd century Fianna warriors who defended Ireland against the evil Fomor giants.
2/12/1867. Monday (-28,281) The English author Charles Dickens drew large crowds in New York to his readings of his novels there.
26/11/1867. Tuesday (-28,287) Mrs Lily Maxwell of Manchester, who had been placed on the electoral register by mistake, was escorted by a police bodyguard to the voting booth to protect her from opponents to women’s suffrage.
12/11/1867, Tuesday (-28,301) The Conservative Party held their first Annual Parry Conference, in a London pub, the Freemasons in Great Queen Street.
7/11/1867. Thursday (-28,306) Marie Curie, who discovered radium, was born in Warsaw, as Marie Sklodowska.
14/10/1867, Monday (-28,330) Okubo Toshimichi, a senior courtier of the feudal Japanese House of Satsuma, travelled from the capital, Edo, to the provincial town of Yamguchi to meet with leaders of the Choshu clan. Toshimichi proposed to overthrow the ruling Satsuma House, and succeeded in forming the secret Satcho alliance, along with the Toza and Hizen clans.
10/10/1867, Thursday (-28,334) The railway from Barmouth and Dollgellau to Machynlleth opened.
3/10/1867, Thursday (-28,341) Elias Howe, inventor of the first practical sewing machine in 1846, died. He made US$ 2 million from his invention.
1/10/1867, Tuesday (-28,343) The Duffield to Wirksworth branch railway opened. The Mawdowy railway, from Cemmaes Road, opened (see 1/7/1952).
25/8/1867. Sunday (-28,380) Michael Faraday, scientist and inventor, pioneer in electromagnetism, died at Hampton Court.
22/8/1867, Thursday (-28,383) The railway from Finsbury Park, London, to Edgware, 8 ¾ miles, was opened.
19/8/1867, Monday (-28,386) James Gordon became the first person to cross the English Channel by canoe, taking 11 hours to travel from Boulogne to Dover.
15/8/1867. Thursday (-28,390) By a Parliamentary Reform Act, one million more voters were added to the UK electorate, mostly urban ratepayers. Those who owned house and paid rates, or lodgers paying more than £10 a year rent, could now vote. The enfranchised population of the UK now stood at 7.9%.
3/8/1867, Saturday (-28,402) Stanley Baldwin, British Conservative and three times Prime Minister between 1923 and 1937, was born at Bewdley, Worcestershire, the only son of a wealthy industrialist and member of parliament. The author Rudyard Kipling was Baldwin's cousin on his mother's side of the family.
26/7/1867. Friday (-28,410) (1) Russia formed the governor-generalship of Turkestan, having moved into the area to prevent Muslim incursions into their territory.
(2) King Otto I of Greece died.
16/7/1867, Tuesday (-28,420) (1) The Havent to Hayling Island railway opened.
(2) Joseph Monier of Paris patented reinforced concrete.
15/7/1867, Monday (-28,421) The railway from Gainsborough to Doncaster via Haxey opened.
14/7/1867. Sunday (-28,422) Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel first demonstrated the use of dynamite in Merstham Quarry, Redhill, Surrey.
1/7/1867. Monday (-28,435) (1) Britain granted Canada self-governing dominion status. Britain still maintained control over foreign policy. The Dominion of Canada was set up by the British North America Act. It comprised four million people and four provinces, Quebec, Ontario, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick.
(2) The German Federal Constitution came into force.
(3) The Lennoxtown to Killearn railway opened.
25/6/1867. Tuesday (-28,441) The first barbed wire was patented by Lucien B Smith of Kent, Ohio. The barbs protruded from small pieces of wood along the wire; this may not have been commercially manufactured but in 1868 a more successful design was commercially produced. This invention was vital for opening up the American west to ranchers since there was insufficient wood for cattle fencing. Barbed wire for defence was first used by American troops in the Spanish – American War of 1898.
21/6/1867, Friday (-28,445) Santa Anna, Mexican leader, died.
19/6/1867, Wednesday (-28,447) Emperor Maximillian of Mexico was executed by firing squad, despite international appeals for clemency. Born in Vienna, brother of Emperor Francis Joseph and Archduke of Austria, he became Emperor of Mexico in 1864, following France’s invasion of Mexico in 1862. Mexicans opposed his rule, and further resentment arose from Maximillian’s lavish lifestyle, and the corruption and inefficiency of his regime. In October 1866 he fled Mexico, intending to abdicate, but was persuaded to return, then arrested and court-martialled.
18/6/1867, Tuesday (-28,448) Turkey passed a law allowing, for the first time, foreigners to own land within Turkey, except in Hejaz.
17/6/1867. Monday (-28,449) Joseph Lister performed a mastectomy on his sister Isabella, using carbolic acid as an antiseptic. It was the first operation under antiseptic conditions.
8/6/1867, Saturday (-28,458) The Hapsburg Emperor, Francis Joseph I, was crowned Apostolic King of Hungary at Buda.
6/6/1867, Thursday (-28,460) The Carnforth to Wennington railway opened.
4/6/1867, Tuesday (-28,462) Carl Mannerheim, Finnish soldier and politician, President, was born in Vilnas.
3/6/1867, Monday (-28,463) The Gaerwen to Amlwch railway, 18.75 miles, Anglesey, opened.
26/5/1867, Sunday (-28,471) Queen Mary, wife of King George V, was born in Kensington Palace as Princess Mary of York.
20/5/1867, Monday (-28,477) The foundation stone of the Royal Albert Hall was laid by Queen Victoria.
17/5/1867, Friday (-28,480) The railway from Kirby Cross to Walton on the Naze opened.
1/5/1867. Wednesday (-28,496) (1) The railway from Dorking to Horsham opened.
(2) The Confederate leader Jefferson Davies walked out of a Virginia courtroom, free after 2 years in prison. But he still faced treason charges, as well as involvement in the assassination of President Lincoln.
18/4/1867, Thursday (-28,509) (1) The Portishead branch line opened.
(2) John Smirke, who designed the façade of the British Museum, died.
17/4/1867, Wednesday (-28,510) The North German Reichstag adopted the new federal Constitution. Four years later all of the German Empire had adopted it.
16/4/1867. Tuesday (-28,511) The American aviation pioneer, Wilbur Wright, was born. He was the elder of the two brothers.
13/4/1867, Saturday (-28,514) The Oxenhope branch line opened.
1/4/1867. Monday (-28,526) (1) In Paris, the World Fair opened. The first hydraulic lift was demonstrated by the engineer Edoux, and Japanese art was on show in the West for the first time.
(2) March to Spalding via Murrow railway opened.
30/3/1867. Saturday (-28,528) The USA purchased Alaska from Russia. Senate voted for the purchase by a single vote. The price was US$7.2 million, less than 2 cents per acre for Alaska’s 375 million acres. Some derided the purchase of this vast wasteland, calling it ‘Icebergia’ or ‘Polaria’. However William Seward, Secretary for the Interior, said that Alaska had great riches in the form of furs, minerals, and fisheries.
29/3/1867, Friday (-28,529) The British North America Act created the dominion of Canada, comprising the provinces of Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia.
15/3/1867. Friday (-28,543) Austria and Hungary buried their differences and agreed to joint rule, sharing defence, foreign, and financial matters but with separate parliaments. However the Czechs, annoyed by the minor role they were given in this arrangement, walked out of the Parliament on 22/8/1868.
11/3/1867, Monday (-28,547) The railway from Leatherhead to Dorking opened.
1/3/1867, Friday (-28,557) Nebraska became the 37th State of the Union.
31/1/1867. Thursday (-28,586) The four great bronze lions at the base of Nelson’s Column were completed by painter Sir Edward Landseer and positioned in Trafalgar Square.
15/1/1867, Tuesday (-28,602) 40 people died when ice gave way in a lake in Regents Park, London. The depth of the lake was subsequently reduced to four feet.
14/1/1867, Monday (-28,603) The painter Jean Auguste Ingres died aged 86 in Paris.
11/1/1867, Friday (-28,606) Mexican President Benito Juarez returned to Mexico City following the defeat of French forces.
20/12/1866, Thursday (-28,628) The railway from Alderbury Junction (Salisbury) to West Moors (Poole) opened.
14/11/1866, Wednesday (-28,664) Miguel I, King of Portugal, died.
13/11/1866, Tuesday (-28,665) Rossini, Italian composer, died in Passy, France, aged 76.
12/11/1866, Monday (-28,666) Sun Yat Sen, President of China, was born.
8/11/1866. Thursday (-28,670) The Birmingham car manufacturer Herbert Austin was born in Little Missenden.
15/10/1866, Monday (-28,694) The Petworth to Midhurst railway opened.
12/10/1866. Friday (-28,697) Ramsay MacDonald, who in 1924 became Britain’s first Labour Prime Minister, was born in Lossiemouth, Morayshire, Scotland.
3/10/1866, Wednesday (-28,706) (1) A peace treaty was concluded between Austria and Italy. Austria surrendered Venetia to Italy. Prussia annexed Schleswig-Holstein, Hanover, Hesse-Cassel, and Frankfurt Am Main. The southern German states agreed that their troops should come under the command of Prussia in the event of war.
(2) The states north of the Mainz joined a new North German Confederation under Prussian leadership. Austria was finally excluded from the German Confederation. The formerly independent duchy of Nassau, Germany, 1,830 square miles, was incorporated with the Kingdom of Prussia.
1/10/1866, Monday (-28,708) The railway from East Grinstead via Groombridge to Tunbridge Wells opened.
21/9/1866, Friday (-28,718) The author H G Wells was born at Bromley, Kent. He was the son of a professional cricketer.
15/9/1866, Saturday (-28,724) The railway from Shanklin to Ventnor opened.
11/9/1866, Tuesday (-28,728) The Taunton to Chard railway opened.
6/9/1866, Thursday (-28,733) Three British tea clippers reached London within hours of each other after a 16,000 mile race from China. The Serica, Taiping and Ariel left Foochow at the end of May 1866 ; the 200 foot clippers were the fastest ships yet built, sailing at over 20 mph.
1/9/1866, Saturday (-28,738) Cannon Street railway station, London, was opened. The Hither Green to New Eltham line opened. The Hither Green to Dartford via Sidcup railway opened.
23/8/1866. Thursday (-28,747) The Treaty of Prague was signed, ending the war between Austria and Prussia.
13/8/1866, Monday (-28,757) The railway from Brixton through Denmark Hill to South Bermondsey, S London, opened.
1/8/1866, Wednesday (-28,769) The Peterborough to Sutton Bridge railway via Murrow opened. Nethy Bridge (Abernethy) to Boat of Garten opened.
28/7/1866, Saturday (-28,773) (1) Beatrix Potter, author and illustrator of children’s books, and creator of Peter Rabbit, was born in South Kensington, London.
(2) The railway from Weeley to Kirby Cross opened.
27/7/1866. Friday (-28,774) The first successful transatlantic cable was laid by the Great Eastern, which arrived this day at Hearts Content, Newfoundland. Attempts had been made to do this since 1856.
25/7/1866, Wednesday (-28,776) The Italians were defeated in a sea battle against Austria off Lissa.
16/7/1866, Monday (-28,785) The Corwen to Llandrillo railway opened.
3/7/1866, Tuesday (-28,798) In northern Czechoslovakia, the Austrian army was routed by Prussian forces at the Battle of Sadowa (Koniggratz). The victory by Bismarck was sealed at the Treaty of Prague, by which Austria renounced her claim to Schleswig-Holstein, where Germany would later build a great naval base at Kiel and build the Kiel Canal linking the Baltic and North Seas.
2/7/1866, Monday (-28,799) The Wallingford branch railway opened.
29/6/1866, Friday (-28,802) The Hanoverian army was forced to capitulate to the Prussians after a defeat in the Battle of Lasngensalza.
26/6/1866, Tuesday (-28,805) The Moretonhampstead to Newton Abbot railway opened.
24/6/1866, Sunday (-28,807) The Italians fighting the Austrians were defeated at Custozza.
18/6/1866, Monday (-28,813) The Innerleithen to Galashiels railway opened.
15/6/1866, Friday (-28,816) Prussian troops crossed the frontiers of Hanover, Saxony, and Hesse-Cassel.
7/6/1866, Thursday (-28,824) Prussian troops entered Holstein. This was the start of the Austro-Prussian War.
12/5/1866, Saturday (-28,850) The direct railway from Cork to Macroom opened.
10/5/1866, Thursday (-28,852) The American Equal Rights Association was founded.
24/4/1866, Tuesday (-28,868) The Klu Klux Klan was formed by White Supremacists, in reaction to US President Andrew Johnson’s programme of reconstruction following the American Civil War, which included enlarging the civil rights of the Black population.
17/4/1866, Tuesday (-28,875) The railway from Wivenhoe to Brightlingsea opened.
16/4/1866, Monday (-28,876) The Ely to Sutton railway opened.
8/4/1866. Sunday (-28,884) Bismarck arranged an alliance between Italy and Germany. Italy promised to join Germany in was against Austria if war broke out in the next three months.
2/4/1866, Monday (-28,890) The Aspatria to Mealsgate railway opened.
31/3/1866, Saturday (-28,892) A Spanish fleet under Admiral Casto Mendez Nunez bombarded the port of Valparaiso, Chile. Peru allied with Chile.
5/3/1866, Monday (-23,918) The Southampton to Netley railway opened.
1/3/1866, Thursday (-23,922) The railway from Kettering to Huntingdon via Thrapston opened. Kings Lynn to Sutton Bridge opened.
21/2/1866, Wednesday (-23,930) August von Wasserman, German bacteriologist who invented a test for syphilis, was born.
12/2/1866. Monday (-28,939) Invoking the Monroe Doctrine, the USA called for the withdrawal of French troops from Mexico.
12/1/1866, Friday (-28,970) The Aeronautical Society of Great Britain was formed. The only means of flying was then by balloon.
8/1/1866, Monday (-28,974) The railway from Wivenhoe to Weeley opened.
30/12/1865, Saturday (-28,983) Rudyard Kipling, story and verse writer, was born in Bombay.
24/12/1865, Sunday (-28,989) (Race equality, USA) The Klu Klux Klan was founded in the US by six men in Pulaski, Tennessee.
23/12/1865, Saturday (-28,990) The Metropolitan Line was extended 0.75 miles east from Farringdon to Moorgate.
18/12/1865. Monday (-28,995) (Race Equality, USA) Slavery was officially abolished in the USA with the ratification of the 13th Amendment, signed on 1/2/1865. See 16/6/1858. The slave trade to the United States had been prohibited in 1807 but slavery continued in the southern States as the cotton trade grew. The publication of Harriet Beecher’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin in 1852 convinced many of the evils of slavery but Northerners were still reluctant to back a full abolitionist policy. But they did not wish to see slavery spread from the South either and this led to the American Civil War of 1861-65 after the election of Abraham Lincoln as president. Slaves were freed in areas joining the Northern side and in all areas after the 13th Amendment was passed.
10/12/1865, Sunday (-29,003) Leopold I, King of Belgium, its first sovereign after separation from The Netherlands, died aged 74. He was succeeded by his 30-year old son, Leopold II.
8/12/1865, Friday (-29,005) Jean Sibelius, Finnish composer, was born in Hameenlinna, the son of a surgeon.
21/11/1865, Tuesday (-29,022) The railway from Audley End to Saffron Walden opened.
7/11/1865, Tuesday (-29,036) The Repeating Light Company of Springfield, Massachusetts manufactured the first pocket lighter.
2/11/1865, Thursday (-29,041) Warren Harding, American Republican and 29th President, was born near Corsica (now called Blooming Grove), Ohio, the son of a rural doctor.
1/11/1865, Wednesday (-29,042) Broad Street Terminus, London, was opened to passengers. Goods traffic began on 18/5/1868. The Montrose to Inverbervie railway opened.
24/10/1865, Tuesday (-29,050) Nobel was granted a patent in the USA for his new invention of dynamite.
18/10/1865. Wednesday (-29,056) Lord Palmerston died, two days short of his 81st birthday. He was staying at his wife’s house, Brockett Hall in Welwyn, Hertfordshire, when struck by fever. He was Secretary for war, Foreign Secretary, and then Prime Minister during a time when Britain was the richest and most powerful nation on Earth. When he was born, on 20/10/1784, Britain had a population of 9 million, 80% of whom worked in agriculture. When he died, Britain had a population of 29 million, 60% of whom worked in manufacturing.
9/10/1865, Monday (-29,065) The Weymouth and Isle of Portland railway, 5 ½ miles, opened.
2/10/1865, Monday (-29,072) The first railway in Sri Lanka opened, from Colombo to Ambepussa.
28/9/1865. Thursday (-29,076) Elizabeth Garrett Anderson was admitted to the register as the first qualified woman surgeon and physician in Britain.
15/9/1865. Friday (-29,089) The British arrested Fenian leaders in Ireland who were preparing an uprising.
12/8/1865, Saturday (-29,123) British surgeon Joseph Lister, 38, operating at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, pioneered the use of carbolic acid as a disinfectant, aiming to reduce the 50% mortality rate amongst amputees.
9/8/1865, Wednesday (-29,126) The Long Melford to Bury St Edmunds railway opened. The Sudbury to Shelford via Haverhill railway opened.
7/8/1865. Monday (-29,128) In the continuing Muslim rebellion in Chinese Turkestan, Ya’qub Beg captured the oasis towns of Kucha and Aksu and took the ruler Burhanuddin as prisoner. On 7/9/1865 Ya’qub Beg captured Kashgar, slaughtering some 4,000 Han Chinese.
2/8/1865, Wednesday (-29,133) Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson) was published.
1/8/1865, Tuesday (-29,134) The railway between Otley and Ilkley, Yorkshire, 6 ¼ miles, opened.
The railway from Peckham Rye through Nunhead to the High Level station at Crystal Palace, south London, opened.
27/7/1866, Thursday (-29,139) The Atlantic Telegraph Cable was completed.
13/7/1865, Thursday (-29,153) Edward Whymper became the first person to climb the Matterhorn.
8/7/1865. Saturday (-29,158) Four of the conspirators involved in the murder of President Lincoln (see 15/4/1865) were hanged. Another three were sentenced to life imprisonment.
5/7/1865, Wednesday (-29,161) The Locomotives and Highways Act in Britain introduced a speed limit for road vehicles of 4mph in the countryside and 2mph in the towns.
3/7/1865, Monday (-29,163) The railway from Ballinluig to Aberfeldy opened.
2/7/1865. Sunday (-29,164) The Salvation Army was founded, by William Booth, with a revival meeting in Whitechapel, London.
1/7/1865, Saturday (-29,165) The railway through Hither Green, SE London, opened.
13/6/1865, Tuesday (-29,183) The Irish writer William Butler Yeats was born.
8/6/1865, Thursday (-29,188) Sir Joseph Paxton, ornamental gardener and architect who designed the Crystal Palace for the 1851 Great Exhibition, died.
3/6/1865, Saturday (-29,193) King George V, second son of Edward VII and Queen Alexandra, was born at Marlborough House in London.
26/5/1865. Friday (-29,201) The Confederate Army under General Kirby Smith surrendered in Texas, fully ending the American Civil War.
22/5/1865. Monday (-29,205) The railway from Sutton to Epsom Downs, south London, opened.
10/5/1865. Wednesday (-29,217) Jefferson Davies, Confederate President of the USA, was taken prisoner by Union forces in the American Civil War.
5/5/1865. Friday (-29,222) The world’s first train robbery took place, at North Bend, Ohio.
1/5/1865. Monday (-29,226) (1) Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay formed a triple alliance against Paraguay. This war began when Paraguayan President Lopez tried to force a pro-Paraguayan president on the people of Uruguay. Brazil intervened in support of the legitimate candidate, and Lopez declared war on Brazil. He also declared war on Argentina, for refusing passage for his troops across its territory, and for good measure declared war on Uruguay too. A few months later Brazil had sunk the Paraguayan navy in the Parana River and by 1867 the alliance’s land forces under Argentine General Bartolome Mitre had penetrated deep into Paraguayan territory. By January 1869 the Paraguayan capital Asuncion lay in ruins and two thirds of the adult population of Paraguay was either dead or missing.
(2) The Ruabon to Corwen railway opened. The Knowesgate to Reedsmouth railway opened.
28/4/1865, Friday (-29,229) Samuel Cunard, Canadian ship owner and founder of the British steamship company, Cunard Line, died.
27/4/1865, Thursday (-29,230) In the US, the paddle steamer Sultana exploded on the Mississippi River, killing 1,600 people on board.
26/4/1865, Wednesday (-29,231) John Wilkes Booth, the assassin of President Abraham Lincoln, died of a bullet wound incurred whilst resisting arrest in a burning barn on a farm near Bowling Green, Virginia.
24/4/1865, Monday (-29,233) In London, the railway from Loughton was extended to Ongar, 11 ½ miles, see 22/8/1856. The Maud to Fraserburgh railway opened.
15/4/1865, Saturday (-29,242) The Vice President, Andrew Johnson, was sworn in as President. See 14/4/1856.
14/4/1865. Friday (-29,243) President Lincoln was shot by an assassin. He died the following day, 15/4/1865.The assassin, John Wilkes Booth, a failed actor, was himself shot dead on 26/4/1865. He had entered the Box Seven of Ford’s Theatre and shot the President in the back of the head with a single bullet. The audience was laughing, and few heard the shot. Booth then slashed at a soldier who rushed him, jumped on stage and shouted ‘Thus always to tyrants – the South is avenged’. Booth managed to escape the theatre, but was tracked down by police and federal agents.
President Lincoln was buried on 4/5/1865 at Springfield, Illinois, where he began his legal career and where he married. See 8/7/1865.
9/4/1865. Sunday (-29,248) The American Civil War ended when General Robert E Lee surrendered his Confederate army to General Ulysses S Grant at the Appomattox Court House, Virginia. The 27,000-strong Confederate army was effectively beaten but was seeking to gain access to a railway which could have taken them south to join with General Johnson’s forces in North Carolina. But Union forces blocked this move. The Confederate soldiers were allowed to keep their horses and small arms, on condition that they did not take up arms against the North again. This surrender effectively ended a conflict that had set brother against brother, and taken over half a million lives. See 26/5/1865.
5/4/1865. Wednesday (-29,252) Union troops destroyed the Confederate capital, Richmond, Virginia.
4/4/1865, Tuesday (-29,253) London’s Southern Outfall Sewer, at Plumstead Marshes, was opened by King Edward VII (as Prince of Wales).
8/3/1865, Wednesday (-29,280) Construction of the Amsterdam – North Sea Canal began.
6/3/1865, Monday (-29,282) The railway from Andoversford through Romsey to Redbridge (Southampton) opened.
3/3/1865. Friday (-29,285) (1) The USA established the Bureau of Freed Slaves, offering them education, medical care, and financial assistance.
(2) Worcestershire County Cricket Club was founded at a meeting at the Stag Hotel, Worcester.
2/3/1865. Thursday (-29,286) President Lincoln rejected Confederate attempts to negotiate, demanding unconditional surrender.
22/2/1865. Wednesday (-29,294) Wilmington, the last Confederate port, fell to the Union forces.
6/2/1865, Monday (-29,310) Robert E Lee became Commander of the Confederate forces in America.
1/2/1865, Wednesday (-29,315) President Abraham Lincoln signed a Resolution proposing the Thirteenth Amendment, abolishing slavery in the USA.
2/1/1865, Monday (-29,345) The railway from Cockermouth via Keswick to Penrith opened.
25/12/1864, Sunday (-29,353) The tradition of a Christmas Day swim in the Serpentine, Hyde Park, London, began.
24/12/1864. Saturday (-29,354) General Sherman captured Savannah, Georgia, from the Confederates.
8/12/1864, Thursday (-29,370) Brunel’s Clifton Suspension Bridge over the River Avon in Bristol was opened.
29/11/1864, Tuesday (-29,379) The Sand Creek massacre; Cheyenne and Arapahoe Indians were waiting to surrender to US forces when soldiers under the command of Colonel Chivington slaughtered them.
15/11/1864, Tuesday (-29,393) General Sherman set out on his march to Savannah, leaving Atlanta a ruin so the Confederates could not use it. He destroyed all arsenals, public buildings, machine shops, and depots, having evacuated all civilians.
8/11/1864. Tuesday (-29,400) Abraham Lincoln was re-elected President of the USA for a second term. Supported by a coalition of Republicans and War Democrats, Lincoln won 55% of the vote.
1/11/1864, Tuesday (-29,407) The railway branch from Strawberry Hill to Shepperton, south west London, was opened.
31/10/1864, Monday (-29,408) Nevada became the 36th State of the Union.
30/10/1864. Sunday (-29,409) By the Peace of Vienna, Denmark gave up Schleswig, Holstein, and Lauenberg. These provinces came under Austrian and Prussian rule.
19/10/1864, Wednesday (-29,420) At the Battle of Cedar Creek, in the American Civil War, General Sheridan defeated the Confederates.
10/10/1864, Monday (-29,429) The railway from Peebles to Innerleithen opened.
1/10/1864, Saturday (-29,438) The railway from Dingwall to Bonar Bridge opened.
28/9/1864, Wednesday (-29,441) Socialist radicals in London formed an International Workingmen’s Association to help unite the world’s workers in revolution. led by Marx and Engels.
21/9/1864, Wednesday (-29,448) The railway from Hay on Wye to Brecon opened to passengers.
18/9/1864, Sunday (-29,451) English explorer John Hanning Speke died in a shooting accident aged 37.
15/9/1864, Thursday (-29,454) (1) Under the ‘September Convention’, Napoleon agreed to evacuate Rome and Italy agreed to move her capital from Turin to Florence.
(2) John Speke, English explorer in Africa who discovered Lake Victoria, accidentally shot himself whilst partridge shooting.
2/9/1864, Friday (-29,467) The Neath to Brecon railway opened.
1/9/1864, Thursday (-29,468) (1) Sir Roger Casement, British civil servant and Irish nationalist, was born in Kingstown, near Dublin.
(2) The railway from Three Cocks Junction via Builth Road to Llanidloes opened.
23/8/1864, Tuesday (-29,477) (1) The railway from Ryde to Shanklin opened.
(2) Eleutherios Venizelos, Greek politician, was born in Crete.
17/8/1864, Wednesday (-29,483) Eight crewmen on the Confederate submarine HL Hunley sank the Union warship Housatonic with an explosive charge, killing five Northern sailors. This was the first time a submarine had sunk an enemy ship in wartime. The Hunley surfaced to signal success to shore with a blue light, then resubmerged. She never resurfaced.
16/8/1864, Tuesday (-29,484) The railway from Churston to Kingswear opened.
5/8/1864, Friday (-29,495) The Battle of Mobile Bay.
27/7/1864, Wednesday (-29,504) The Whitchurch to Oswestry railway opened.
11/7/1864, Monday (-29,520) The railway from Eardisley to Hay on Wye opened to passengers.
4/7/1964, Monday (-29,527) The Peebles to Edinburgh line opened.
29/6/1864, Wednesday (-29,532) Samuel Crowther, Bishop of Niger, became the first Black Church of England Bishop.
18/6/1864, Saturday (-29,543) The USS Kearsarge, captained by John Wilmslow, sank the British built warship Alabama, a Confederate ship, off Cherbourg.
15/6/1864, Wednesday (-29,546) Arlington Cemetery, the site of the unknown soldier, was established near Washington.
13/6/1864, Monday (-29,548) The Hammersmith branch of London’s Metropolitan Line, 2 ½ miles of line from Westbourne Park, was opened.
11/6/1864, Saturday (-29,550) Richard Strauss, composer, was born in Munich, Germany.
9/6/1864, Thursday (-29,552) Charles Dickens was involved in a train crash at Staplehurst in Kent. He had to return to the wreckage to salvage the manuscript for a part of the story Our Mutual Friend.
6/6/1864, Monday (-29,555) King George of Greece entered the Ionian Islands.
5/6/1864, Sunday (-29,556) Battle of Wilderness; Unionist victory.
3/6/1864, Friday (-29,558) Battle of Cold Harbor. Fought in Virginia during the American Civil War, General Ulysses S Grant’s Unionist forces suffered heavy losses, 12,000 men, in an ill-judged attack on General Robert E Lee’s well-defended Confederate position. Although a Confederate victory, this battle served to maintain the Unionist strategy of maintaining unremitting pressure on the South.
1/6/1864, Wednesday (-29,560) The railway at Elephant and Castle (from Herne Hill) was extended north to Blackfriars, see 6/10/1862. The railway from Uffington to Faringdon opened. The Bognor Regis branch railway opened.
23/5/1864, Monday (-29,769) Battle of North Anna; Confederate victory
21/5/1864, Saturday (-29,571) The Battle of Spottsylvania Courthouse ended.
19/5/1864, Thursday (-29,573) Nathaniel Hawthorne, US novelist (born 4/7/1804 in Salem, Massachusetts), died at Plymouth, New Hampshire.
16/5/1864, Monday (-20,576) The Ashchurch to Malvern railway opened.
15/5/1864, Sunday (-20,577) Battle of Drewry’s Bluff; Confederate victory.
11/5/1864, Wednesday (-29,581) Battle of Yellow Tavern; Unionist victory.
1/5/1864, Sunday (-29,591) Charing Cross, London, fully opened, for all rail journeys.
15/4/1864, Friday (-29,607) The railway from Savernake to Marlborough opened.
11/4/1864, Monday (-26,611) The Langholm (Carlisle) branch railway opened.
10/4/1864, Sunday (-29,612) Maximillian, an Austrian archduke, was made Emperor of Mexico.
1/4/1864, Friday (-29,621) The railway from New Beckenham, through Croydon (Addiscombe Road) to Addiscombe opened.
21/3/1864, Monday (-29,632) The Royton branch railway (Oldham) opened.
18/3/1864, Friday (-29,635) The Hull to Hornsea railway opened.
14/3/1864, Monday (-29,639) Lake Albert in Africa was discovered and named by Sir Samuel Baker.
10/3/1864, Thursday (-29,643) (1) Prince Edward was born.
(2) Maximilian II, King of Bavaria, died.
9/3/1864, Wednesday (-29,644) General Ulysses Grant was made Commander in Chief of the Union forces in the American Civil War.
2/3/1864, Wednesday (-29,651) US President Lincoln rejected Confederate General Lee’s call for peace talks, demanding surrender.
29/2/1864, Monday (-29,653) The Peabody Trust opened the Commercial Street flats in Spitalfields. It boasted previously unheard-of luxuries such as separate laundry rooms and a play area for children.
2/2/1864, Tuesday (-29,680) (1) Greece occupied Corfu.
(2) Middlesex County Cricket Club was founded at a meeting at the London Tavern, Bishopsgate.
1/2/1864, Monday (-29,681) (1) The Broughton to Peebles railway opened.
(2) Austrian and Prussian troops under the command of Friedrich von Wangle invaded Schleswig, Denmark.
16/1/1864, Saturday (-29,697) Denmark rejected an ultimatum, from Germany over the Danish province of Schleswig.
13/1/1864, Wednesday (-29,700) Stephen Foster, musician, died in New York (born 4/7/1926)
12/1/1864, Tuesday (-29,701) Lancashire County Cricket Club was founded in Manchester.
11/1/1864, Monday (-29,702) (1) Charing Cross Station, London, was officially opened (for local train journeys).
(2) Harry Gordon Selfridge, American retailer, was born in Ripon, Wisconsin.
31/12/1863, Thursday (-29,713) The railway from Londonderry to Lough Swilly opened.
24/12/1863. Thursday (-29,720) (1) Following the Danish annexation of the province of Schleswig on 30/3/1863, Saxon and Hanoverian forces moved into Holstein.
(2) William Thackeray, poet, died in London.
19/12/1863. Saturday (-29,725) Frederick Walton of London patented linoleum.
12/12/1863Saturday (-29,732) Edward Munch, Norwegian artist who painted The Scream, was born.
8/12/1863, Tuesday (-29,736) The newly-formed Football Association issued an agreed code of 14 game rules. These included banning tripping, shin-kicking and ball-handling.
2/12/1863, Wednesday (-29,742) The Capitol Building, Washington DC, USA, was completed. It is the meeting place of Congress.
1/12/1863, Tuesday (-29,743) The first steam railway in New Zealand opened, from Christchurch to Ferrymead.
23/11/1863, Monday (-29,751) The Battle of Chattanooga in the American Civil War.
19/11/1863. Thursday (-29,755) Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, at the dedication of the military cemetery at Gettysburg. He said ‘government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth’.
16/11/1863, Monday (-20,758) The Duns to St Boswells railway opened.
15/11/1863, Sunday (-20,759) Frederick VII, King of Denmark, died.
14/11/1863. Saturday (-29,760) (1) Leo Baekeland, US chemist who invented Bakelite, an early plastic, was born in Ghent, Belgium.
(2) Britain ceded the Ionian Islands to Greece.
10/11/1863, Tuesday (-29,764)
3/11/1863, Tuesday (-29,771) The Calne branch railway (Wiltshire) opened to passengers.
2/11/1863, Monday (-29,770) US President Lincoln was invited to make a speech at the dedication of the new cemetery at Gettysburg. Jefferson Davis visited Charleston and publicly stated that he believed the city would not fall.
1/11/1863, Sunday (-29,773) The railway from Oldham Mumps to Rochdale East opened.
29/10/1863. Thursday (-29,776) Swiss philanthropist Henri Dunant founded the International Red Cross after witnessing the tending of the wounded at the Battle of Solferino, near Mantua, north Italy.
26/10/1863. Monday (-29,779) The English Football Association was formed at a meeting at Freeman’s Tavern in Great Queen Street, London.
18/10/1863. Sunday (-29,787) A French photographer called Nadar took the first aerial photographs from his balloon, The Giant. However the trip ended with Nadar breaking his leg, near Hanover.
17/10/1863, Saturday (-29,788) US Secretary of War Edwin Stanton boarded a train in Indianapolis, with orders for him to assume command of the Military Division of the Mississippi.
16/10/1863, Friday (-29,789) Sir Austin Chamberlain, British politician, was born in Birmingham.
5/10/1863, Monday (-29,800) The railway from Herne Bay to Ramsgate opened.
3/10/1863. Saturday (-29,802) President Lincoln declared the last Thursday in November to be a national holiday of Thanksgiving.
19/9/1863, Saturday (-29,816) The Battle of Chickamauga in the American Civil War.
21/8/1863, Friday (-29,845) The Quantrill raid, on Lawrence, Kansas.
13/8/1863, Thursday (-29,853) The painter Eugene Delacroix died in Paris..
12/8/1863, Wednesday (-29,854) Hampshire County Cricket Club was founded in Southampton.
11/8/1863. Tuesday (-29,855) The French established a protectorate over Cambodia, after continued attacks by Thai and Vietnamese forces.
3/8/1863, Monday (-29,863) The railway from Pulborough to Arundel opened.
30/7/1863. Thursday (-29,867) Henry Ford, father of the mass-produced car, was born in Dearborn, Michigan, the son of a farmer. He built his first car in his spare time in a shed behind his house in Detroit.
The railway from Pembroke to Tenby opened.
26/7/1863, Sunday (-29,871) Death of Sam Houston, US soldier and First President of the Republic of Texas (1836-8 and 1841-4) after whom the city is named.
22/7/1863, Wednesday (-29,875) The Holme to Ramsey North railway opened.
20/7/1863, Monday (-29,877) Denmark, with no hope of intervention from England, sued for peace over the German attack over Schleswig.
11/7/1863, Saturday (-29,886) Conscription began for the Unionist Army in the US Civil war. Draft riots broke out in New York and other cities; 1,200 people were killed.
4/7/1863. Saturday (-29,893) Confederate forces under General Joseph Pemberton surrendered unconditionally to Federal troops who had besieged Vicksburg since May. This effectively split Confederate territory in two.
3/7/1863. Friday (-29,894) (1) The Buntingford branch railway opened from St Margarets.
(2) The Battle of Gettysburg,, Pennsylvania, in the American Civil War, ended with the Confederate Army under General Robert E Lee routed and over 50,000 dead or wounded. The Union victory was under General Meade
1/7/1863, Wednesday (-29,896) (1) Slavery ceased in the Dutch West Indies.
(2) The Battle of Gettysburg began. It ended on 3/7/1863 with a Unionist victory, although both sides lost heavily (Unionists, 23,000; Confederates, 25,000). With his defeat at Gettysburg, General Lee retreated having lost any hopes of foreign support for his cause.
(3) The first railway to Kingston on Thames, Surrey, opened, a branch from Twickenham. Up till now areas like Surbiton and Richmond, already with rail connections to London, were growing at the expense of rail-less Kingston. However this first branch provided merely a rather circuitous route to Waterloo. Coaching interests had kept the railways out of Kingston on Thames. See 1/1/1869.
(4) The Dandalieth to Craigellachie railway, Scotland, opened. The Dufftown to Nethy Bridge (Abernethy) railway opened.
30/6/1863, Tuesday (-29,897) The railway from Hereford to Eardisley opened to passengers.
20/6/1863. Saturday (-29,907) West Virginia became the 35th state to join the Union.
4/6/1863 Thursday (-29,923) A protocol between Britain, France, and Russia provided for the incorporation of the Ionian Islands with Greece.
1/6/1863, Monday (-29,926) The Bishops Waltham branch (Hampshire) opened.
30/5/1863, Saturday (-29,928) The railway from Whaley Bridge to Buxton opened.
27/5/1863, Wednesday (-29,931) Broadmoor asylum for the criminally insane at Crowthorne, Berkshire was opened.
10/5/1863, Sunday (-29,948) The railway from Yeldham to Haverhill opened.
8/5/1863, Friday (-29,950) The railway from Hythe (Colchester) to Wivenhoe opened.
6/5/1863, Wednesday (-29,952) Lee (Confederate) defeated Hooker (Unionist) at the Battle of Chancellorsville.
4/5/1863, Monday (-29,954) Maoris clashed with British settlers at Taranaki, New Zealand, over land rights.
6/4/1863, Monday (-29,982) The Blackpool to Lytham railway, Lancashire, opened.
27/3/1863. Friday (-29,992) Sir Frederick Henry Royce, co-founder of the Rolls Royce Motor Company, was born in Alwalton, near Peterborough, the son of a miller.