Historical Events in 1861

Events 1 - 200 of 267

  • Jan 1 Porfirio Diaz conquers Mexico City

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 1 President-elect of the United States Abraham Lincoln declares slavery in Confederate states unlawful (US Civil War)

US President Abraham Lincoln
US President
Abraham Lincoln
  • Jan 2 SC seizes inactive Ft Johnson in Charleston Harbor
  • Jan 2 Colonel Charles Stone is put in charge of organizing DC militia
  • Jan 3 Delaware legislature rejects proposal to join Confederacy
  • Jan 3 US Ft Pulaski & Ft Jackson, Savannah, seized by Georgia
  • Jan 4 US Ft Morgan, Mobile, seized by Alabama
  • Jan 5 250 Federal troops are sent from New York to Ft Sumter
  • Jan 5 Alabama troops seize Forts Morgan & Gaines at Mobile Bay
  • Jan 6 Florida troops seize Federal arsenal at Apalachicola
  • Jan 6 NYC mayor proposes NY become a free city, trading with N & S
  • Jan 7 Florida troops takeover Fort Marion at St Augustine (US Civil War)
  • Jan 9 A Union merchant ship, the Star of the West, is fired upon as it tries to deliver supplies to Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina
  • Jan 9 Mississippi secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 10 Fort Jackson & Fort Philip are taken over by LA state troops (US Civil War)
  • Jan 10 US forts & property seized by Mississippi
  • Jan 10 Florida secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 11 Mexico City captured by Juarez (Lib) in War of Reform
  • Jan 11 Alabama secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 12 Florida state troops demand surrender of Fort Pickens (US Civil War)
  • Jan 14 Fort Pikens, Florida, falls into state hands (US Civil War)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 15 Steam elevator patented by Elisha Otis

Inventor and Elevator Industrialist Elisha Otis
Inventor and Elevator Industrialist
Elisha Otis
  • Jan 19 Misssissippi troops take Fort Massachusetts and Ship Island (US Civil War)
  • Jan 19 Georgia secedes from the Union (US Civil War)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 21 Jefferson Davis of Mississippi and 4 other southern senators resign (U.S Civil War)

President of the Confederate States of America Jefferson Davis
President of the Confederate States of America
Jefferson Davis
  • Jan 24 Arsenal at Augusta, Georgia, seized by Confederacy
  • Jan 24 Federal troops from Ft Monroe are sent to Ft Pikens
  • Jan 26 Louisiana secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 29 US state of Kansas admitted to the Union as the 34th state
  • Jan 31 Friedrich Hebbel's "Siegfrieds Tod" premieres in Weimar
  • Jan 31 State of Louisiana takes over US Mint at New Orleans (U.S Civil War)
  • Feb 1 Dike breaks in Gelderland, Netherlands
  • Feb 1 Texas secedes from the Union (which precipitates the American Civil War)
  • Feb 4 Confederate constitutional convention meets for 1st time; Jefferson Davis elected President of Confederacy (US Civil War)
  • Feb 5 Kinematoscope patented by Coleman Sellers, Philadelphia
  • Feb 5 Louisiana delegation except Mr Bouligny withdraws from Congress (US Civil War)
  • Feb 6 1st meeting of Provisional Congress of Confederate States of America (US Civil War)
  • Feb 6 British Vice-Admiral Robert Fitzroy issues first storm warnings for ships
  • Feb 8 Confederate States of America organizes in Montgomery, Alabama (US Civil War)
  • Feb 9 Jefferson Davis & Alexander Stephens elected President & VP of the Confederate States of America (US Civil War)
  • Feb 9 Tennessee votes against secession (US Civil War)

AgreementConstitution of the United States

Feb 9 Confederate Provisional Congress declares all laws under the US Constitution were consistent with constitution of Confederate states (US Civil War)

  • Feb 11 President-elect Lincoln takes train from Spingfield IL to Washington, D.C.
  • Feb 11 US House unanimously passes resolution guaranteeing noninterference with slavery in any state
  • Feb 12 State troops seize US munitions in Napoleon, Arkansas, during the US Civil War
  • Feb 13 First military action to result in Congressional Medal of Honor, Arizona
  • Feb 13 Abraham Lincoln declared US president in Washington, D.C.
  • Feb 13 Col Bernard Irwin attacks & defeats hostile Chiricahua Indians
  • Feb 15 Ft Point completed & garrisoned (but has never fired cannon in anger)
  • Feb 18 Confederate President Jefferson Davis inaugurated at Montgomery, Alabama (US Civil War)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 18 King Victor Emmanuel II of Sardinia becomes first King of Italy

King of Sardinia and Italy Victor Emmanuel II
King of Sardinia and Italy
Victor Emmanuel II
  • Feb 19 Russian Tsar Alexander II abolishes serfdom [NS=Mar 3]
  • Feb 20 Department of Navy of Confederacy forms (US Civil War)
  • Feb 21 Steeple of Chichester Cathedral collapses despite the desperate efforts of 70 workmen
  • Feb 21 Navaho indians elect Herrero Grande as chief
  • Feb 22 On a bet Edward Weston leaves Boston to walk to Lincoln's inauguration
  • Feb 23 Dutch Premier Floris A van Hall resigns
  • Feb 27 Russians shoot at Poles protesting Russian rule of Poland in Castle Square, Warsaw
  • Feb 27 US Congress authorizes 1st stamped newspaper wrappers for mailing
  • Feb 28 Territories of Nevada & Colorado created
  • Mar 2 Government Printing Office purchases 1st printing plant, Washington
  • Mar 2 US creates Dakota & Nevada Territories out of the Nebraska & Utah ter
  • Mar 3 Alexander II of Russia signs the Emancipation Manifesto, freeing serfs [OS=Feb 19].
  • Mar 4 Confederate States adopt "Stars & Bars" flag (US Civil War)
  • Mar 4 Abraham Lincoln is inaugurated as 16th US President
  • Mar 4 US President Lincoln opens government Printing Office
  • Mar 6 Provisionary Confederate Congress establishes Confederate Army
  • Mar 8 St Augustine Florida surrenders to Union armies
  • Mar 9 Confederate currency authorized-$50, $100, $500, $1,000
  • Mar 10 El Hadj Umar Tall seizes the city of Segou, destroying the Bambara Empire of Mali.
  • Mar 11 Confederate convention in Montgomery adopts constitution (US Civil War)
  • Mar 13 23rd Grand National: Joseph Kendall aboard Jealousy wins
  • Mar 16 Arizona Territory votes to leave the Union (US Civil War)
  • Mar 16 Confederate government appoints commissioners to Britain

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 16 Edward Clark became Governor of Texas, replacing Sam Houston, who was evicted from the office for refusing to take an oath of loyalty to the Confederacy (US Civil War)

Texan Revolutionary Sam Houston
Texan Revolutionary
Sam Houston

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 17 Italy is unified into a single kingdom under Victor Emmanuel II following the campaigns led by Giuseppe Garibaldi

Unifier of Italy Giuseppe Garibaldi
Unifier of Italy
Giuseppe Garibaldi
King of Sardinia and Italy Victor Emmanuel II
King of Sardinia and Italy
Victor Emmanuel II
  • Mar 19 The First Taranaki War ends in New Zealand
  • Mar 20 An earthquake completely destroys Mendoza, Argentina.
  • Mar 22 1st US nursing school chartered
  • Mar 23 London's 1st tramcars, designed by Mr Train of NY, begins operating
  • Mar 31 Confederacy takes over mint at New Orleans (US Civil War)
  • Apr 5 Federals abandon Ft Quitman, Texas
  • Apr 8 US mint at Dahlonega, Georgia, seized by confederacy (US Civil War)
  • Apr 12 Fort Sumter, SC is shelled by Confederacy, starting Civil War
  • Apr 13 After 34 hours of bombardment, Fort Sumter surrenders to Confederates (US Civil War)
  • Apr 14 Formal Union surrender of Ft Sumter (US Civil War)
  • Apr 15 Federal army (75,000 volunteers) mobilized by US President Lincoln (US Civil War)
  • Apr 16 US president Lincoln outlaws business with confederate states (US Civil War)
  • Apr 17 Indianola TX - "Star of West" taken by Confederacy
  • Apr 17 Virginia secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Apr 18 Battle of Harpers Ferry, Virginia, part of the Maryland Campaign (US Civil War)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 18 Colonel Robert E. Lee turns down offer to command Union armies (US Civil War)

Confederate General Robert E. Lee
Confederate General
Robert E. Lee
  • Apr 19 Baltimore riots-4 soldiers, 9 civilians killed
  • Apr 19 Lincoln orders blockade of Confederate ports (Civil War)
  • Apr 23 Robert E. Lee named commander of Virginia Confederate forces (US Civil War)
  • Apr 23 Arkansas troops seize Ft Smith
  • Apr 25 Battle of Lavaca, Texas (US Civil War)
  • Apr 25 The Union Army arrives to reinforce Washington, D.C. (US Civil War)
  • Apr 27 US President Abraham Lincoln suspends writ of habeas corpus (US Civil War)
  • Apr 27 West Virginia secedes from Virginia after Virginia secedes from Union (US Civil War)
  • Apr 29 Maryland's House of Delegates votes against seceding from Union (US Civil War)
  • Apr 30 President Lincoln ordered Federal Troops to evacuate Indian Territory (US Civil War)
  • May 1 Lee orders Confederate troops under T J Jackson to Harper's Ferry
  • May 3 Gen Winfield Scott presents his Anaconda Plan for the North against the South in American Civil War
  • May 3 Lincoln asks for 42,000 Army Volunteers & another 18,000 seamen
  • May 4 At Gretna LA, one of 1st guns of Rebel navy is cast
  • May 5 Alexandria, VA - CS troops abandon city
  • May 6 Arkansas & Tennessee becomes 9th & 10th states to secede from US
  • May 6 Jefferson Davis approves a bill declaring War between the Union & the Confederacy
  • May 7 Riot occurs between prosecessionist & Union supporters in Knoxville TN
  • May 8 Richmond, Virginia, is named the capital of the Confederacy
  • May 10 Union troops march on state militia in St Louis, MI

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 13 Queen Victoria announces Britain's position of neutrality

Queen of the United Kingdom Victoria
Queen of the United Kingdom
Victoria
  • May 13 The Great Comet of 1861 is discovered by John Tebbutt of Windsor, New South Wales, Australia.
  • May 14 The Canellas meteorite, an 859-gram chondrite-type meteorite, strikes the earth near Barcelona, Spain.
  • May 16 Twiggs Surrender, San Antonio, Texas during US Civil war
  • May 16 Confederate government offers war volunteers $10 premium
  • May 16 Kentucky proclaims its neutrality
  • May 18 Battle of Sewall's Point VA-1st Federal offense against South
  • May 18 Friedrich Hebbel's "Kriemhildes Rache" premieres in Weimar
  • May 20 Cornerstone of University of Washington laid in Seattle
  • May 20 Kentucky proclaims its neutrality in Civil War
  • May 20 North Carolina becomes 11th & last state to secede from Union
  • May 20 US marshals appropriate previous year's telegraph dispatches, to reveal prosecessionist evidence
  • May 21 Richmond, Va, is designated Confederate Capital
  • May 23 3 fleeing slaves enter Fort Monroe Virginia
  • May 23 Virginia citizens vote 3 to 1 in favor of secession from the Union
  • May 24 Alexandria, VA occupied by Federal troops
  • May 24 Maj Gen Benjamin Butler declares slaves "contraband of war"
  • May 25 John Merryman is arrested under suspension of writ of habeas corpus it later sparks a supreme court decision protecting writ
  • May 26 US Postmaster General Blair announces end of postal connection with South
  • May 26 Union blockades New Orleans LA & Mobile AL
  • May 29 Dorothea Dix offers help in setting up hospitals for Union Army
  • May 31 Gen Beauregard is given command of Confederate Alexandria Line
  • May 31 Mint at New Orleans closes
  • Jun 1 1st skirmish in Civil War, Fairfax Court House, Va
  • Jun 1 British territorial waters & ports off-limits during Civil War
  • Jun 1 Skirmish at Arlington Mills, VA
  • Jun 1 US & Confederacy simultaneously stop mail interchange
  • Jun 3 1st Civil War land battle-Union defeats Confederacy at Philippi, WV
  • Jun 5 Federal marshals seize arms & gunpower at Du Pont works DE
  • Jun 6 Lincoln's cabinet declares Union government will pay for expenses once states have mobilized volunteers
  • Jun 8 US Sanitary Commission is given executive approval
  • Jun 8 American Civil War: Tennessee votes to secede from the Union.
  • Jun 10 Battle of Big Bethel VA (Bethel Church, Great Bethal)-Union retreats
  • Jun 12 Missouri Governor Claiborne Jackson calls for 50,000 volunteers to stop Federates from taking over his state

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jun 14 Harpers Ferry evacuated by rebels in face of General George McClellan's advance

Union General George McClellan
Union General
George McClellan
  • Jun 15 Johnston evacuates Harpers Ferry
  • Jun 16 Battle of Vienna, VA & Secessionville, SC (James Island)
  • Jun 17 Battle of Boonville, MI-Brigadier General Lyon defeats Confederate forces
  • Jun 19 Anaheim Post Office established
  • Jun 19 Francis Pierpont is elected provisional governor of West Virginia
  • Jun 24 Battle of Mathias Point, VA-US attacks Confederate batteries
  • Jun 24 Tennessee becomes 11th (& last) state to secede from Union
  • Jun 25 Western Virginia campaign
  • Jun 28 Leipzig Observatory discovers short-period (6.2 yrs) Comet d'Arrest
  • Jun 30 CSS Sumter slips past USS Brooklyn blockade
  • Jul 1 1st public schoolhouse opens at Washington & Mason St, SF
  • Jul 1 US War Dept decrees that Kansas and Tennessee are to be canvassed for volunteers
  • Jul 2 Battle of Hoke's Run, WV - small Union victory
  • Jul 3 Colonel Jackson receives his commission as brigadier general
  • Jul 3 Pony Express arrives in SF with overland letters from NY
  • Jul 3 Martinsburg, VA - Confederate forces pull out before US advance
  • Jul 4 In a special session of 27th Congress Lincoln requests 400,000 troops
  • Jul 4 Skirmish at Harper's Ferry, WV
  • Jul 5 Battle of Carthage, MO - US Gen Sigel attacks pro-secessionist
  • Jul 7 Battle of Laurel Hill, VA
  • Jul 8 Confederate General Sibley is given command of rebel troops in New Mexico territory
  • Jul 8 Skirmish at Florida, MI - A rebel encampment is attacked & dispersed
  • Jul 10 Lincoln writes to Kentucky's militia & says Union troops will not enter that state
  • Jul 11 Battle of Laurel Mountain VA - Gen Morris forces retreat of rebels
  • Jul 11 Battle of Rich Mountain, VA - Rosecrans forces rebels to surrender
  • Jul 13 Battle of Corrick's Ford, VA (Carrick's Ford) - Union army takes total control of western Virginia CS20 US53
  • Jul 14 Gen McDowell advances toward Fairfax Courthouse, VA with 40,000 troops
  • Jul 14 Naval Engagement at Wilmington NC - USS Daylight establishes blockade
  • Jul 16 Battle of Bull Run, the 1st major battle of the Civil War, is fought
  • Jul 16 Manassas Campaign [->JUL 22]
  • Jul 17 US Congress authorizes paper money
  • Jul 17 Manassas, VA Gen Beauregard requests reinforcements for his 22,000 men, Gen Johnston is ordered to Manassas
  • Jul 18 Battle of Blackburn's Ford, VA US57 CS68 - Manassas -
  • Jul 20 Confederate states' congress began holding sessions in Richmond, Va
  • Jul 21 1st major battle of Civil War ends (Bull Run), Va - South wins
  • Jul 24 Skirmish at Taylor Mountain, (W)VA - CS Gen Wise retreats
  • Jul 25 Washington, D.C. - Crittenden resolution is passed stating that the war is to be fought to preserve union & uphold the Constitution, not to alter slavery
  • Jul 25 Skirmish at Fort Fillmore, NM Terr - Rebels attack Union troops
  • Jul 27 Battle of Mathias Point, VA - Rebel forces repel a Federal landing
  • Jul 27 Battle of St Augustine Springs, NM Terr
  • Jul 27 Confederate troops occupy Fort Fillmore, New Mexico
  • Jul 27 Union General George McClellan takes command from McDowell of Potamic Army
  • Jul 31 9,300 mm rainfall in July in Cherrapunji, Assam: world record
  • Aug 1 Brazil recognizes Confederacy
  • Aug 2 Skirmish at Dug Springs, MI
  • Aug 3 Federal fleet bombards Galveston, Texas
  • Aug 5 Enlistment increases from 3 months to 2 years
  • Aug 5 Naval Engagement at Fernandina, FL-USS Vincennes ends rebel blockade
  • Aug 5 US Army abolishes flogging
  • Aug 5 US levies its 1st Income Tax (3% of incomes over $800)
  • Aug 6 US Congress passes First Confiscation Act
  • Aug 6 Lexington, Kentucky - Union military camp forms in neutral state
  • Aug 6 The British annex Lagos, Nigeria.