On This Day

What Happened in January 1855

Historical Events

  • Jan 9 Clipper "Guiding Star" disappears in Atlantic, 480 dead
  • Jan 23 1st bridge over the Mississippi River in what is now Minneapolis, Minnesota, opens; today made by the Father Louis Hennepin Bridge
  • Jan 28 The first locomotive runs from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean on the Panama Railway
  • Jan 31 Western railroads blocked by snow
  • Jan 31 The government of Lord Aberdeen in the United Kingdom falls following heavy scrutiny of the Crimean War
  • Jan 31 Treaty of Neah Bay: Makah Reservation established in US Territory of Washington for Makah nation, preserving tribal rights but ceding over 300,000 acres to the US government [1]

Famous Birthdays

  • Jan 2 Frank Hadow, British tennis player (Wimbledon 1878; first exponent of the lob), born in London, England (d. 1946)
  • Jan 3 Hubert Bland, English socialist (d. 1914)

King C. Gillette

Jan 5 King C. Gillette, American businessman and inventor of inexpensive and disposable safety razor blades, born in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin (d. 1932)

  • Jan 10 Peter J. Blok, Dutch historian (History of the Dutch People)
  • Jan 15 Jacques Damala [Aristides Damalas], Greek military officer and actor, born in Piraeus, Greece (d. 1889)
  • Jan 20 Ernest Chausson, French Romantic composer (Poème; Solitude dance le bois), born in Paris, France (d. 1899)
  • Jan 22 Ernst Kullak, German pianist, and composer of parlor music, born in Berlin, Germany (d. 1914)
  • Jan 22 Albert Neisser, German physician who discovered the bacteria that cause gonorrhea and leprosy, born in Schweidnitz, Prussian Empire (d. 1916)
  • Jan 23 John Moses Browning, American weapons manufacturer, born in Ogden, Utah Territory (d. 1926)
  • Jan 26 Arthur Hervey, Irish orchestral and operatic composer, and musicologist, born in Paris, France (d. 1922)
  • Jan 28 William Seward Burroughs, American inventor of the 1st workable adding machine, born in rural New York (d. 1898)

Famous Deaths

  • Jan 6 Giacomo Beltrami, Italian explorer (b. 1779)
  • Jan 8 Diponegoro, Javanese prince who opposed Dutch colonial rule and Indonesian national hero, dies at 69
  • Jan 10 Mary Russell Mitford, English playwright and poet (Julian), dies at 67
  • Jan 25 Dorothy Wordsworth, English poet, diarist and sister of William Wordsworth, dies at 83
  • Jan 26 Gérard de Nerval, French writer (b. 1808)