On This Day

What Happened in May 1855

Historical Events

  • May 3 Antwerp-Rotterdam railway opens
  • May 5 New York State Commission on Emigration assumes lease of Castle Garden (now known as Castle Clinton), at the lower tip of Manhattan, to be used for immigration [1]

Famous Birthdays

  • May 1 Cecilia Beaux, American portrait painter, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • May 2 Theodore Moses Tobani, German composer, born in Hamburg, Germany (d. 1933)
  • May 7 Willie Fernie, Scottish golfer (British Open 1883), born in St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland (d. 1924)
  • May 8 John Gates ("Bet-a-million" Gates), American inventor and industrialist who established the market for barbed wire fencing, born in Chicago, Illinois
  • May 9 Julius Röntgen, German-Dutch composer, born in Leipzig, Germany (d. 1932)
  • May 12 Anatoly Lyadov, Russian composer (From the Apocalypse; Bewitched Lake), conductor, and pedagogue (St. Petersburg Conservatory, 1878-1914), born in Saint Petersburg, Russia (d. 1914)
  • May 15 Eduard von Keyserling, Baltic German writer (Dritte Stiege)
  • May 21 Emile Verhaeren, Belgian poet and writer (Les Flammes Hautes), born in Sint-Amands, Belgium (d. 1916)
  • May 24 Arthur Wing Pinero, English actor and playwright, born in London (d. 1934)

Famous Deaths

  • May 4 Camille Pleyel, Austrian piano builder, and composer, dies at 66
  • May 5 Sir Robert Inglis, Bt, English politician (b. 1786)
  • May 15 Jan Mazereeuw, Frisian farmer/sect leader, dies at 75
  • May 23 Charles Robert Malden, British naval officer (discoverer of Malden Island, central Pacific), dies at 57
  • May 27 Nikolaj Bestuzhev, Russian Navy officer, writer and painter (Decembrist revolt), dies at 64
  • May 30 Ahmad Pasha Bey, 10th Husainid Bey of Tunis, (1837–1855) who abolished slavery, dies at 49