On This Day

What Happened in May 1789

Historical Events

Meeting of Interest

May 5 French Estates-General meets for the first time since 1614 at Versailles, summoned King Louis XVI

Historic Event

May 7 First US Presidential inaugural ball (for George Washington in NYC)

  • May 12 Society of St Tammany is formed by Revolutionary War soldiers. It later becomes an infamous group of NYC political bosses

Britain Abolishes the Slave Trade

May 12 William Wilberforce makes his first major speech on abolition in the UK House of Commons, reasoning the slave trade morally reprehensible and an issue of natural justice


Famous Birthdays

  • May 28 Bernhard Severin Ingemann, Danish author (Tomorrow- og Aftensange), born in Torkilstrup, Denmark (d. 1862)

Famous Deaths

  • May 10 Guillaume-Gommaire Kennis, Belgian violinist and composer, dies at 72
  • May 25 Anders Dahl, Swedish botanist (b. 1751)