What Happened in May 1884

Historical Events

  • May 1 Catcher Moses Walker is acknowledged as the first African-American to play major league baseball joining the Toledo Blue Stockings
  • May 1 Construction begins on Chicago's 1st skyscraper (10 stories)
  • May 1 Proclamation of the demand for eight-hour workday in the United States.
  • May 13 Institute for Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE) forms in New York
  • May 14 Anti-Monopoly party forms in US
  • May 16 10th Kentucky Derby: Isaac Murphy aboard Buchanan wins in 2:40.25
  • May 16 Italian inventor Angelo Moriondo receives patent for 1st espresso machine
  • May 17 Alaska becomes a US territory
  • May 19 Ringling Brothers circus premieres
  • May 22 1-armed pitcher Hugh Daily fanned 13 hitters
  • May 23 12th Preakness: S Fisher aboard Knight of Ellerslie wins in 2:39.5
  • May 24 Anti-Monopoly party & Greenback Party forms People's Party in US

Sports History

May 26 Australian cricket fast bowler Fred Spofforth takes 7-34 & 7-3 against an England XI in a tour match in Birmingham; match over in just 4 hours

  • May 29 Europe's first steam cable trams start in Highgate, London

Famous Birthdays

  • May 1 Felipe Boero, Argentine composer, born in Buenos Aires, Argentina (d. 1958)
  • May 1 Francis Curzon, 5th Earl Howe, British politician, naval officer and auto racer (1931 Le Mans), born in Mayfair, London (d. 1964)
  • May 2 François de Vries, Dutch economist, born in Groningen, Netherlands (d. 1958)
  • May 4 Wang Jingwei, Chinese politician (21st Premier of the Republic of China 1932-35), born in Sanshui, Guangdong, Qing Dynasty (d. 1944)

Harry Truman

May 8 Harry Truman, 33rd US President (Democrat: 1945-53), born in Lamar, Missouri (d. 1972)

  • May 19 Arthur Meulemans, Flemish composer, conductor, and music teacher (Adriaen Brouwer), born in Aarschot, Belgium (d. 1966)
  • May 21 Manuel Pérez y Curis, Uruguayan poet (d. 1920)
  • May 22 Alceo Toni, Italian composer, born in Lugo di Romagna (d. 1969)
  • May 23 Corrado Gini, Italian sociologist (d. 1965)
  • May 26 Charles Winninger, American actor (Cafe Metropole, Coney Island, Charlie Farrell Show), born in Athens, Wisconsin (d. 1969)
  • May 27 Max Brod, Czech-born Israeli composer, writer, and biographer of Kafka, born in Prague (d. 1968)

Edvard Beneš

May 28 Edvard Beneš, Czech politician, statesman, and 2nd President of Czechoslovakia (1935-38, 1945-48), born in Kožlany, Bohemia, Austria-Hungary (d. 1948)

  • May 28 Theo van Reijn, Dutch sculptor and lithographer, born in Breda, Netherlands (d. 1954)

Famous Weddings

  • May 1 "Poems of Passion" author Ella Wheeler Wilcox (33) weds Robert M. Wilcox in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Oscar Wilde

May 29 Irish writer Oscar Wilde marries Constance Lloyd at St. James Church, Paddington, London


Famous Deaths

  • May 4 Maria Anna of Savoy, Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia, dies at 80
  • May 7 Judah P. Benjamin, 3rd Confederate States Secretary of State and 2nd Confederate States Secretary of War, dies at 72
  • May 9 Hermanus Willem Witteveen, Dutch theologist, dies at 69
  • May 12 [Friedrich] Bedřich Smetana, Czech composer (The Bartered Bride; Má Vlast; Moldau), dies at 60

Cyrus McCormick

May 13 Cyrus McCormick, American inventor and businessman (mechanical reaper), dies at 75

  • May 17 Louis Brassin, Belgian pianist, composer and music educator, dies at 43
  • May 22 William T. Wofford, Brigadier General (Confederate Army-American Civil War), dies at 59