What Happened in October 1869

Historical Events

  • Oct 1 1st postcards are issued in Vienna, Austria
  • Oct 5 A strong hurricane known as the Saxby Gale devastates the Bay of Fundy region in Maritime Canada. Incredibly British naval officer Stephen Martin Saxby predicted the storm 10 months earlier in December 1868 via astronomy.
  • Oct 5 Man-made tunnel under St. Anthony Falls, Minnesota collapses, threatening the Minneapolis riverfront
  • Oct 16 Hotel in Boston becomes 1st to have indoor plumbing

Historic Event

Oct 18 Henrik Ibsen's "De Unges Forbund" (The League of Youth) premieres in Christiania (Oslo), Norway

  • Oct 21 1st shipment of fresh oysters comes overland from Baltimore
  • Oct 26 1st American steeplechase horserace at Westchester, NY

Famous Birthdays

Mahatma GandhiMahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)

Oct 2 Indian independence activist and Spiritual Leader, born in Porbandar, Kathiawar Agency, British India

  • Oct 3 Alfred Flatow, German gymnast (Olympic gold 1896), born in Danzig, Prussia (d. 1942)
  • Oct 3 Clara Noyes, American nurse (head of the American Red Cross WW1), born in Port Deposit, Maryland (d. 1936)
  • Oct 8 J. Frank Duryea, American inventor (Duryea Motor Wagon Company, first auto built in the US), born in Washburn, Illinois (d. 1967)
  • Oct 8 Komitas [Soghomon Soghomonian], Armenian priest, composer (Patarag), and musicologist, born in Kütahya, Ottoman Empire (now Turkey) (d. 1935) [O.S. birth 09-26]
  • Oct 9 Harry Lawrence Freeman, African-American composer, born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 1954)
  • Oct 11 Frederic Norton, English composer (Chu Chin Chow), born in Broughton-in-Salford (d. 1946)
  • Oct 14 Joseph Duveen, British art connoisseur (Elgin marbles), born in Hull, Yorkshire, England (d. 1939)
  • Oct 23 Jacobus H "Koos" Speenhoff, Dutch cabaret singer, born in Kralingen, Holland (d. 1945)

John HeismanJohn Heisman (1869-1936)

Oct 23 American football coach (legalised forward pass, originated the center-snap; Heisman Trophy named after him), born in Cleveland, Ohio

  • Oct 26 August Halm, German composer, born in Vellberg, Germany (d. 1929)
  • Oct 26 Washington Luís, President of Brazil (1926-30), born in Macaé, Rio de Janeiro (d. 1957)
  • Oct 30 Lawrence Grant [Percy Reginald], British actor (Bulldog Drummond), born in Bournemouth, England (d. 1952)

Famous Weddings

Victor Emmanuel II

Oct 18 Sardinia king Victor Emmanuel II (49) weds his mistress Rosa Vercellana (36) in Italy

Charles Brooke

Oct 28 Sarawak's head of state Charles Brooke (40) weds Margaret Alice Lili de Windt (20) at Highworth, Wiltshire


Famous Deaths

  • Oct 13 Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve, French writer (Tableau Historique), dies at 64
  • Oct 22 Michael Sars, Norwegian zoologist, dies at 64

Edward Smith-StanleyEdward Smith-Stanley (1799-1869)

Oct 23 14th Earl of Derby, British Prime Minister (Conservative: 1852, 1858-59, 1866-68), dies at 70

  • Oct 23 Jean-Baptiste-Joseph Tolbecque, Belgian-French composer, dies at 72
  • Oct 24 Joseph Jackson Lister, British optician who perfected the optical microscope by designing the achromatic objective lens, dies at 83