On This Day

What Happened in October 1781

Historical Events


Victory in BattleSurrender at Yorktown

Oct 9 Americans under George Washington and the French under comte de Rochambeau begin bombardment of Yorktown, the last battle of American Revolutionary War
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'Surrender of Lord Cornwallis' by John Trumbull depicting the British surrender which ended the American Revolutionary War
'Surrender of Lord Cornwallis' by John Trumbull depicting the British surrender which ended the American Revolutionary War

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 19 British forces under General Charles Cornwallis sign terms of surrender to George Washington and Comte de Rochambeau at Yorktown at 2 pm, ending the US Revolutionary War

General and Colonial Administrator Charles Cornwallis
General and Colonial Administrator
Charles Cornwallis
Financier Haym Salomon
Financier
Haym Salomon
Military Leader Comte de Rochambeau
Military Leader
Comte de Rochambeau
  • Oct 19 Edit of Toleration issued by Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II, providing limited freedom of worship for non-Roman Catholic Christians

Famous Birthdays

  • Oct 1 James Lawrence, American naval hero (War of 1812-"Don't give up the ship!"), born in Burlington, New Jersey (d. 1813)
  • Oct 5 Bernard Bolzano, Czech mathematician and philosopher, born in Prague, Bohemia (d. 1848)

Famous Deaths

  • Oct 9 Thomas Erskine, 6th earl of Kellie, Scottish composer and musician, dies at 49
  • Oct 16 Edward Hawke, 1st Baron Hawke, British naval officer (b. 1705)
  • Oct 27 Herman-Francois Delange, Belgian composer, dies at 66