On This Day

What Happened in May 1803

Historical Events

  • May 16 Peace of Amiens between French Republic and Great Britain ends
  • May 17 John Hawkins & Richard French patent the Reaping Machine

BattleDeclaration of War

May 18 Britain declares war on France after Napoleon Bonaparte continues interfering in Italy and Switzerland

French Emperor Napoléon Bonaparte
French Emperor
Napoléon Bonaparte
  • May 22 1st US public library opens in Connecticut

Famous Birthdays

  • May 7 Johan Peter Cronhamm, Swedish composer, born in Östra Karup, Skåne, Sweden (d. 1875)
  • May 8 Joseph Napoleon Ney, French politician, born in Paris (d. 1857)
  • May 12 Justus von Liebig, German agricultural and biological chemist who is considered the founder of organic chemistry, born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany (d. 1873)
  • May 17 Robert Smith Surtees, British novelist (Jorrocks’s Jaunts and Jollities), born in The Riding, England (d. 1864)
  • May 24 Charles Lucien Bonaparte, French prince of Canino and Musignano, born in Paris (d. 1857)
  • May 24 Alexander von Nordmann, Finnish zoologist, born in Kotka, Finland (d. 1866)

Person of interestRalph Waldo Emerson

May 25 Ralph Waldo Emerson, American essayist and philosopher (Concord Hymn), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1882)

Lecturer and Poet Ralph Waldo Emerson
Lecturer and Poet
Ralph Waldo Emerson