Historical Events in 1853

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  • Jan 1 1st practical fire engine (horse-drawn) in US enters service
  • Jan 3 Solomon Northup is freed after 7 illegal years in slavery with aid of Washington Hunt, Governor of New York
  • Jan 4 Solomon Northup, author of the memoir "Twelve Years a Slave", regains his freedom

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 6 Franklin Pierce, the President-elect of the United States at the time, and his family are involved in a train wreck in Massachusetts

14th US President Franklin Pierce
14th US President
Franklin Pierce
  • Jan 8 1st US bronze equestrian statue (of Andrew Jackson) unveiled, Washington
  • Jan 10 Charles Reade's "Gold," premieres in London
  • Jan 19 Verdi's opera "Il Trovatore" premieres in Rome
  • Jan 21 Envelope-folding machine patented by Russell Hawes, Worcester, Mass

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 23 John Wilkes Booth is baptized at St. Timothy's Protestant Episcopal Church

  • Feb 21 US authorizes minting of $3 gold pieces
  • Mar 2 Territory of Washington organized after separating from Oregon Ter
  • Mar 2 15th Grand National: Tom Oliver aboard Peter Simple wins
  • Mar 3 Transcontinental railroad survey is authorized by US Congress
  • Mar 3 US Assay Office in NYC authorized
  • Mar 4 Pope Pius IX recovers Catholic hierarchy in Netherlands
  • Mar 4 William Rufus de Vane King (D) sworn in as 13th US VP

Music releaseMusic Premiere

Mar 6 Giuseppe Verdi's Opera "La Traviata" premieres in Venice

Composer Giuseppe Verdi
Composer
Giuseppe Verdi
  • Apr 1 Cincinnati became 1st US city to pay fire fighters a regular salary
  • Apr 15 Protestant church questions king Willem III RC bishops
  • Apr 16 The first passenger rail opens in India, from Bori Bunder, Bombay to Thane.
  • Apr 17 Johan Rudolf Thorbecke's government in the Netherlands resigns
  • Apr 17 US Marine Hospital at Presidio (SF) forms
  • Apr 18 1st train in Asia (Bombay to Tanna, 36 km)
  • Apr 19 Netherlands Van Hall government forms
  • Apr 26 Dutch King William III disbands 2nd Chamber
  • Apr 29 Comet C/1853 G1 (Schweizer) approaches within 0.0839 AUs of Earth
  • May 1 Argentina adopts its constitution
  • May 2 Franconi's Hippodrome opens (NYC)
  • May 6 1st major US rail disaster kills 46 (Norwalk, Connecticut)
  • May 14 Gail Borden, land surveyor, newspaper publisher, and inventor, patents his process for condensed milk
  • May 17 Thorbeckes liberals win 2nd-Parliamentary election
  • May 23 Buenos Aires gains independence from Argentina (reunited 1859)
  • May 31 Elisha Kane's Arctic expedition leaves NY aboard Advance
  • Jun 24 Gadsden Purchase 29,670-square-mile (76,800 square km) from Mexico (now southern Arizona and New Mexico) for $10 million signed by President Franklin Pierce

Conference meetingConference of Interest

Jul 6 National Black convention meets in Rochester NY, ex-slave Frederick Douglass attends

Abolitionist Frederick Douglass
Abolitionist
Frederick Douglass
  • Jul 6 William Wells Brown publishes "Clotel", 1st novel by an African American

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 8 Commodore Matthew C. Perry sails his frigate Susquehanna into Tokyo Bay, opening Japan to Western influence and trade

Commodore of the US Navy Matthew C. Perry
Commodore of the US Navy
Matthew C. Perry
  • Jul 9 Adm Perry & US Navy visit Japan
  • Jul 14 1st US World's fair opens at New York's Crystal Palace
  • Jul 14 Commodore Perry requests trade relations with Japan
  • Jul 14 US President Franklin Pierce opens 1st industrial exposition (NY)
  • Jul 14 New Zealand holds its first general election
  • Jul 18 Completion of Grand Trunk Line, trains begin running over 1st North American railroad between Portland, Maine & Montreal
  • Jul 25 Joaquin Murietta, the famous Californio bandit known as "Robin Hood of El Dorado", is killed.
  • Aug 8 Russian fleet appears at Nagasaki, Japan
  • Aug 24 1st potato chips prepared by chef George Crum (Saratoga Springs, NY)
  • Sep 11 1st electric telegraph used - Merchant's Exchange, San Francisco to Pt Lobos, California
  • Sep 15 First US woman ordained a minister, Antoinette Blackwell
  • Sep 24 1st round-the-world trip by yacht (Cornelius Vanderbilt)
  • Sep 24 France annexes New Caledonia
  • Sep 24 Northern Daily Times, 1st provincial daily newspaper, starts in London
  • Sep 29 Emigrant ship "Annie Jane" sinks off Scotland, drowning 348
  • Oct 2 Austrian law forbids Jews from owning land
  • Oct 6 4th National Women's Rights Convention opens in Cleveland Ohio
  • Oct 12 John Morrissey wins boxing title, when Yankee Sullivan leaves ring after 36th round to slug Morrissey's fans
  • Oct 19 First flour mill in Hawaii begins operations
  • Oct 23 Maastricht-Aken railway in Netherlands opens
  • Nov 9 Origin of Carrington rotation numbers for rotation of Sun
  • Nov 17 Street signs authorized at San Francisco intersections
  • Nov 28 Olympia forms as capital of Washington Territory
  • Dec 30 A dinner party is held inside a life-size model of an Iguanodon (ornithopod dinosaur) created by Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins and Sir Richard Owen in south London.