Historical Events in 1861

Events 1 - 200 of 267

  • Jan 1st Porfirio Diaz conquers Mexico City

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 1st 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 2nd SC seizes inactive Ft Johnson in Charleston Harbor
  • Jan 2nd Colonel Charles Stone is put in charge of organizing DC militia
  • Jan 3rd Delaware legislature rejects proposal to join Confederacy
  • Jan 3rd US Ft Pulaski & Ft Jackson, Savannah, seized by Georgia
  • Jan 4th US Ft Morgan, Mobile, seized by Alabama
  • Jan 5th 250 Federal troops are sent from New York to Ft Sumter
  • Jan 5th Alabama troops seize Forts Morgan & Gaines at Mobile Bay
  • Jan 6th Florida troops seize Federal arsenal at Apalachicola
  • Jan 6th NYC mayor proposes NY become a free city, trading with N & S
  • Jan 7th Florida troops takeover Fort Marion at St Augustine (US Civil War)
  • Jan 9th 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 9th Mississippi secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 10th Fort Jackson & Fort Philip are taken over by LA state troops (US Civil War)
  • Jan 10th US forts & property seized by Mississippi
  • Jan 10th Florida secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 11th Mexico City captured by Juarez (Lib) in War of Reform
  • Jan 11th Alabama secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 12th Florida state troops demand surrender of Fort Pickens (US Civil War)
  • Jan 14th Fort Pikens, Florida, falls into state hands (US Civil War)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 15th Steam elevator patented by Elisha Otis

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

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 21st 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 24th Arsenal at Augusta, Georgia, seized by Confederacy
  • Jan 24th Federal troops from Ft Monroe are sent to Ft Pikens
  • Jan 26th Louisiana secedes from the Union (US Civil War)
  • Jan 29th US state of Kansas admitted to the Union as the 34th state
  • Jan 31st Friedrich Hebbel's "Siegfrieds Tod" premieres in Weimar
  • Jan 31st State of Louisiana takes over US Mint at New Orleans (U.S Civil War)
  • Feb 1st Dike breaks in Gelderland, Netherlands
  • Feb 1st Texas secedes from the Union (which precipitates the American Civil War)
  • Feb 4th Confederate constitutional convention meets for 1st time; Jefferson Davis elected President of Confederacy (US Civil War)
  • Feb 5th Kinematoscope patented by Coleman Sellers, Philadelphia
  • Feb 5th Louisiana delegation except Mr Bouligny withdraws from Congress (US Civil War)
  • Feb 6th 1st meeting of Provisional Congress of Confederate States of America (US Civil War)
  • Feb 6th British Vice-Admiral Robert Fitzroy issues first storm warnings for ships
  • Feb 8th Confederate States of America organizes in Montgomery, Alabama (US Civil War)
  • Feb 9th Jefferson Davis & Alexander Stephens elected President & VP of the Confederate States of America (US Civil War)
  • Feb 9th Tennessee votes against secession (US Civil War)

AgreementConstitution of the United States

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

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

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 18th 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 19th Russian Tsar Alexander II abolishes serfdom [NS=Mar 3]
  • Feb 20th Department of Navy of Confederacy forms (US Civil War)
  • Feb 21st Steeple of Chichester Cathedral collapses despite the desperate efforts of 70 workmen
  • Feb 21st Navaho indians elect Herrero Grande as chief
  • Feb 22nd On a bet Edward Weston leaves Boston to walk to Lincoln's inauguration
  • Feb 23rd Dutch Premier Floris A van Hall resigns
  • Feb 27th Russians shoot at Poles protesting Russian rule of Poland in Castle Square, Warsaw
  • Feb 27th US Congress authorizes 1st stamped newspaper wrappers for mailing
  • Feb 28th Territories of Nevada & Colorado created
  • Mar 2nd Government Printing Office purchases 1st printing plant, Washington
  • Mar 2nd US creates Dakota & Nevada Territories out of the Nebraska & Utah ter
  • Mar 3rd Alexander II of Russia signs the Emancipation Manifesto, freeing serfs [OS=Feb 19].
  • Mar 4th Confederate States adopt "Stars & Bars" flag (US Civil War)
  • Mar 4th Abraham Lincoln is inaugurated as 16th US President
  • Mar 4th US President Lincoln opens government Printing Office
  • Mar 6th Provisionary Confederate Congress establishes Confederate Army
  • Mar 8th St Augustine Florida surrenders to Union armies
  • Mar 9th Confederate currency authorized-$50, $100, $500, $1,000
  • Mar 10th El Hadj Umar Tall seizes the city of Segou, destroying the Bambara Empire of Mali.
  • Mar 11th Confederate convention in Montgomery adopts constitution (US Civil War)
  • Mar 13th 23rd Grand National: Joseph Kendall aboard Jealousy wins
  • Mar 16th Arizona Territory votes to leave the Union (US Civil War)
  • Mar 16th Confederate government appoints commissioners to Britain

Event of interestEvent of Interest

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

Event of interestEvent of Interest

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

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 13th Queen Victoria announces Britain's position of neutrality

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

Event of interestEvent of Interest

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

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