Historical Events in 1885

  • Jan 2 General Wolseley receives last distress signal of General Gordon in Khartoum
  • Jan 3 The beginning of the Battle of Nui Bop in the Sino-French War
  • Jan 4 Dr W W Grant of Iowa, performs 1st appendectomy (on Mary Gartside, 22)
  • Jan 11 Henrik Ibsen's "Vildauden," premieres in Oslo
  • Jan 17 British beat Mahdists at Battle of Abu Klea in Sudan
  • Jan 19 Battle of Abu Klea, Sudan, between the British Desert Column and Mahdist forces: 76 British and 1,100 Mahdists killed
  • Jan 25 Vincent d'Indy's "Saugefleurie" premieres
  • Jan 26 Muhammad Ahmed ("Mahdi") rebels conquer Khartoum

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 28 Commission for Auguste Rodin's sculpture 'The Burghers of Calais' signed by the Municipal Council of Calais.

Sculptor Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin
  • Feb 5 News of fall of Khartoum reaches London
  • Feb 5 King Leopold II of Belgium establishes the Congo as a personal colonial possession
  • Feb 9 1st Japanese arrive in Hawaii
  • Feb 12 Carl Peters founds German East-Africa Society

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 17 Bismarck gives Carl Peters' firm management of East-Africa

German Statesman Otto Von Bismarck
German Statesman
Otto Von Bismarck

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 18 Mark Twain publishes the "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" in the US

Author Mark Twain
Mark Twain
  • Feb 21 Washington Monument dedicated (Washington, D.C.)
  • Feb 25 US Congress condemns barbed wire around government grounds
  • Feb 26 Congress of Berlin; gives Congo to Belgium & Nigeria to Great Britain
  • Mar 3 1st US state (California) establishes a permanent forest commission
  • Mar 3 American Telephone & Telegraph (AT&T) incorporates
  • Mar 3 US Congress passes Indian Appropriations Act (Indians wards of federal government)
  • Mar 3 US Post Office offers special delivery for 1st-class mail

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 4 Grover Cleveland inaugrated as 1st US Democratic President since Civil War

US President Grover Cleveland
US President
Grover Cleveland
  • Mar 14 Gilbert & Sullivan's comic opera "Mikado" premieres in London at the Savoy Theatre
  • Mar 15 1st performance of Caesar Franck's "Lesson Djinns"

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 19 Louis Riel returns to Canada, proclaims provisional government, Sask

Politician Louis Riel
Louis Riel
  • Mar 20 John Matzeliger of Suriname patents shoe lacing machine
  • Mar 20 Yiddish theater opens in NY with Golldfaden operetta
  • Mar 21 2nd French government of Ferry resigns
  • Mar 26 Eastman Film Co manufactures 1st commercial motion picture film
  • Mar 26 Louis Riel's forces defeat Canadian forces at Duck Lake, Sask
  • Mar 27 47th Grand National: Mr Ted Wilson aboard Roquefort wins
  • Mar 28 US Salvation Army officially organized
  • Mar 30 The Battle for Kushka triggers the Pandjeh Incident which nearly gives rise to war between the British Empire and Russian Empire.
  • Mar 31 Great Britain declares Bechuanaland a protectorate
  • Apr 30 Boston Pops Orchestra forms
  • May 1 Maria "Goeie Mie" Swanenburg sentence to life for killing 27 in Netherlands
  • May 2 "Good Housekeeping" magazine is 1st published
  • May 2 Congo Free State formed by King Leopold II of Belgium
  • May 7 John E W Thompson named US minister to Haiti
  • May 8 Sarah Ann Henley survives 76-m jump from Clifton Bridge, Avon, Engl
  • May 12 Battle of Batoche: Louis Riel and the Metis defeated by Frederick Middleton, leds to collapse of Provincial Government of Saskatchewan and surrender of Riel
  • May 14 11th Kentucky Derby: Babe Henderson aboard Joe Cotton wins in 2:37.25
  • May 15 Canadian Meti insurgent Louis Reil captured, Saskatchewan
  • May 19 1st mass production of shoes (Jan Matzeliger in Lynn, Massachusetts)
  • May 19 German chancellor Bismarck takes possession of Cameroon and Togoland
  • May 22 13th Preakness: Jim McLaughlin aboard Tecumseh wins in 2:49
  • Jun 6 19th Belmont: Paul Duffy aboard Tyrant wins in 2:43
  • Jun 6 Opera "Lakmé" is produced (Paris)
  • Jun 12 Roof collapse kills 30 at murder trial in France
  • Jun 17 Statue of Liberty arrived in NYC aboard French ship `Isere'
  • Jun 24 British government of Salisbury forms
  • Jun 24 Samuel David Ferguson becomes 1st US black bishop
  • Jul 1 The United States terminates reciprocity and fishery agreement with Canada.
  • Jul 2 Canada's North-west Insurrection ends with surrender of Big Bear

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 6 Louis Pasteur successfully tests an anti-rabies vaccine

Bacteriologist Louis Pasteur
Louis Pasteur
  • Jul 17 9th Wimbledon Men's Tennis: William Renshaw beats H Lawford (7-5, 6-2 4-6 7-5)
  • Aug 7 Five German warships anchor off Zanzibar
  • Aug 10 Leo Daft opens America's 1st commercially operated electric streetcar in Baltimore
  • Aug 11 $100,000 raised in US for pedestal for Statue of Liberty
  • Aug 14 Japan's first patent is issued to the inventor of a rust-proof paint.
  • Aug 22 5th U.S. Men's National Championship: Richard Sears beats Godfrey M. Brinley (6-3, 4-6, 6-0, 6-3)
  • Aug 29 Gottlieb Daimler receives German patent for a motorcycle
  • Aug 29 Phillies Charlie Ferguson no-hits Providence 1-0
  • Aug 29 Boxing's 1st heavyweight title fight with 3-oz gloves & 3-minute rounds fought between John L Sullivan & Dominick McCaffrey
  • Aug 30 13,000 meteors seen in 1 hour near Andromeda
  • Sep 2 In Rock Springs, Wyoming, 150 white miners, who were struggling to unionize so they could strike for better wages and work conditions, attack their Chinese fellow workers, killing 28, wounding 15, and forcing several hundred more out of town.
  • Sep 4 1st cafeteria opens (NYC)
  • Sep 5 1st gasoline pump is delivered to a gasoline dealer (Ft Wayne, Ind)
  • Sep 6 Eastern Rumelia declares its union with Bulgaria. The Unification of Bulgaria is accomplished.
  • Sep 11 Moses Hopkins, named minister to Liberia
  • Sep 12 Highest score (35) recorded in any 1st-class soccer match is set
  • Sep 16 Puritan (US) beats Genesta (England) in 6th running of America's Cup
  • Sep 18 Riots break out in Montreal to protest against compulsory smallpox vaccination.
  • Sep 21 Dutch demonstrate for general voting right
  • Sep 22 Lord Randolph Churchill makes a speech in Ulster in opposition to Home Rule e.g. "Ulster will fight and Ulster will be right".
  • Sep 24 Five German warships depart to Zanzibar
  • Sep 29 The first practical public electric tramway in the world is opened in Blackpool, England.
  • Sep 30 Bechuanaland becomes a British protectorate
  • Oct 1 Special delivery mail service begins in US
  • Oct 3 25th British Golf Open: Bob Martin shoots a 171 at St Andrews
  • Oct 13 The Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) is founded in Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Oct 15 Hoss Radbourne pitches his 60th win of season
  • Oct 17 Baseball sets all players salaries at $1,000-$2,000 for 1885 season
  • Oct 22 John Ward & several teammates secretly form Brotherhood of Prof Base Ball Players, 1st baseball union
  • Oct 24 Johann Strauss' operetta "Zigeunerbaron (Gypsy Baron)" premieres in Vienna
  • Oct 25 John Brahms' 4th Symphony in E premieres
  • Nov 1 Pope Leo XIII publishes encyclical Immortale Dei
  • Nov 3 Tacoma vigilantes drive out Chinese, burn their homes & businesses
  • Nov 6 US mint at Carson City, Nevada, directed to close
  • Nov 7 Canadian Pacific Railway completed at Craigellachie
  • Nov 9 Opera "Ermine" premieres in London
  • Nov 10 Gottlieb Daimler unveils the world's first motorcycle
  • Nov 12 Montreal & Britannia Football Clubs (QRFU) defeat Ontario Combined Team (ORFU) 3-0 in CRFU Championship game
  • Nov 13 Serbian army occupies Bulgaria
  • Nov 17 The Serbian Army, with Russian support, invades Bulgaria
  • Nov 19 Bulgarians, led by Stefan Stambolov, repulse a larger Serbian invasion force at Slivinitza
  • Nov 23 Amsterdam police attack meeting of social-democrats united
  • Nov 27 1st meteor photograph taken by Austro-Hungarian photographer Ladislaus Weinek in Prague
  • Nov 27 Earliest photograph of a meteor shower taken
  • Nov 30 Opera "El Cid" premieres (Paris)
  • Dec 2 Opera "Regina di Saba" premieres in Vienna
  • Dec 7 49th Congress (1885-87) convenes
  • Dec 17 France declares Madagascar a protectorate
  • Dec 22 Pope Leo XIII proclaims extraordinary jubilee
  • Dec 22 Itō Hirobumi, a samurai, becomes the first Prime Minister of Japan.