On This Day

What Happened in May 1842

Historical Events

  • May 5 City-wide fire burns for over 100 hours in Hamburg, Germany
  • May 8 Versailles to Paris train catches fire; 50 die
  • May 14 Illustrated London News; the world's first illustrated weekly newspaper, begins publication
  • May 22 Farmers Lester Howe and Henry Wetsel discover Howe Caverns in New York state when they stumble upon a large gaping hole in the ground

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 25 Christian Doppler presents his idea, now known as the Doppler Effect, to the Royal Bohemian Society, Prague

MurderAssassination Attempt

May 30 John Francis attempts to assassinate Queen Victoria

Queen of the United Kingdom Queen Victoria
Queen of the United Kingdom
Queen Victoria

Famous Birthdays

  • May 5 Johann Nepomuk Fuchs, Austrian composer, born in Frauental, Styria, Austria (d. 1899)
  • May 7 Isla van Diest, Belgian physician, 1st female doctor and 1st female university graduate in Belgium, born in Louvain, Belgiun (d. 1916)
  • May 8 Emil Christian Hansen, Danish physiologist, born in Ribe, Denmark (d. 1909)
  • May 12 Jules Massenet, French composer (Manon, Le Cid), born in Montaud, France (d. 1912)
  • May 13 Arthur Sullivan, English operatic composer (Pirates of Penzance, H.M.S Pinafore), born in London (d. 1900)

Famous Deaths

  • May 8 Jules Dumont d'Urville, French explorer and naval officer, dies at 51
  • May 15 Emanuel A D M J count de las Cases, French historian (Napoleon), dies at 76
  • May 23 Jose de Espronceda y Delgado, Spanish revolutionary/poet, dies at 34