On This Day

What Happened in May 1785

Historical Events

  • May 9 British inventor Joseph Bramah patents beer-pump handle

InventionHistoric Invention

May 23 Benjamin Franklin announces his invention of bifocals

United States Founding Father Benjamin Franklin
United States Founding Father
Benjamin Franklin

Famous Birthdays

  • May 9 James Pollard Espy, American meteorologist (Philosophy of Storms), born in Pennsylvania (d. 1860)
  • May 18 John Wilson, Scottish writer (d. 1854)

Famous Deaths

  • May 8 Pietro Longhi, Venetian painter, dies at 83
  • May 8 Étienne François, duc de Choiseul, French statesman, dies at 65
  • May 9 Franz Xaver Schnitzer, German composer, dies at 44
  • May 10 Etienne Joseph Floquet, French opera composer, dies at 36
  • May 15 Karel Blazej Kopriva, Czech organist and composer, dies at 29
  • May 23 William Woollett, engraver, dies