On This Day

What Happened in January 1885

Historical Events

  • Jan 2 General Wolseley receives last distress signal of General Gordon in Khartoum
  • Jan 3 The beginning of the Battle of Nui Bop in the Sino-French War
  • Jan 4 Dr William Grant of Iowa, performs 1st appendectomy in America on Mary Gartside, aged 22

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 11 Henrik Ibsen's "Vildauden," premieres in Oslo

Playwright Henrik Ibsen
Playwright
Henrik Ibsen
  • Jan 17 Battle of Abu Klea (Battle of Abu Tulayh), Sudan: British Desert Column defeat Mahdist forces: 76 British and 1,100 Mahdists killed
  • Jan 19 Battle of Abu Kru (Battle of Gubat), Sudan: British Desert Column defeat Mahdist forces: 121 British and untold Mahdists killed

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 25 Vincent d'Indy's "Saugefleurie" premieres

Composer Vincent d'Indy
Composer
Vincent d'Indy
  • Jan 26 Muhammad Ahmed ("Mahdi") rebels conquer Khartoum

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 28 Commission for Auguste Rodin's sculpture 'The Burghers of Calais' signed by the Municipal Council of Calais.

Sculptor Auguste Rodin
Sculptor
Auguste Rodin

Famous Birthdays

  • Jan 1 Roland Diggle, English-born American composer and organist (d. 1954)
  • Jan 2 Johannes Ringers, Dutch water engineer (dikes)
  • Jan 5 Humbert Wolfe, Italian-born British poet, born in Milan, Italy (d. 1940)
  • Jan 8 John Curtin, Victoria, 14th Prime Minister of Australia (Labor: 1941-45), born in Creswick, Colony of Victoria (d. 1945)
  • Jan 8 A. J. Muste, Dutch pacifist and activist (d. 1967)

Person of interestAlice Paul

Jan 11 Alice Paul, American suffragist (National Woman's Party), born in Mount Laurel Township, New Jersey (d. 1977)

Suffragist Alice Paul
Suffragist
Alice Paul
  • Jan 11 Jack Hoxie, American actor, rodeo performer (The White Outlaw), born in Kingfisher Creek, Oklahoma (d. 1965)
  • Jan 13 Alfred Fuller, CEO (Fuller Brush Man)
  • Jan 15 Lorenz Böhler, Austrian physician, born in Wolfurt, Austria (d. 1973)
  • Jan 15 Huang Yuanyong, Chinese writer, born in Jiujiang, China (d. 1915)
  • Jan 15 Grover Lowdermilk, American baseball player, born in Sandborn, Illinois (d. 1968)
  • Jan 16 Wladyslaw Raczkiewicz, president of Poland (1939-40)
  • Jan 16 Zhou Zuoren, Chinese writer (d. 1967)
  • Jan 17 Emmy Hennings-Ball [Emma Cordsen], German poet and performer, born in Flensburg, German Empire (d. 1948)
  • Jan 17 Joseph Arendt, Belgian worker's union leader
  • Jan 21 Umberto Nobile, Italian general
  • Jan 23 Boleslaw Wallek-Walewski, Polish composer and conductor, born in Lviv, Ukraine (d. 1944)
  • Jan 25 Else Mauhs [Alwine Julie Else Mauhs], German-Dutch actress (Eline Vere, L'aiglon), born in Mülheim an der Ruhr (d. 1959)
  • Jan 25 Kitahara Hakushū, Japanese poet & children's writers, born in Nankan, Japan (d. 1942)

Person of interestJerome Kern

Jan 27 Jerome Kern, American Broadway composer (Showboat, Roberta), born in NYC, New York

Broadway Composer Jerome Kern
Broadway Composer
Jerome Kern
  • Jan 27 Eduard Künneke, German composer (d. 1953)
  • Jan 27 Maeda Seison, Japanese painter (d. 1977)
  • Jan 30 John Henry Towers, American naval aviator, born in Rome, Georgia (d. 1955)

Famous Deaths

  • Jan 4 Iosif Kotek, Russian composer and violinist, dies at 29
  • Jan 6 Peter C Asbjornsen, Norwegian fairy tale writer, dies at 72
  • Jan 6 Harishchandra, Indian poet, dramatist and commonly referred as "father of modern Hindi", dies at 34
  • Jan 13 Schuyler Colfax, American politician (b.1823)
  • Jan 15 Levin Minn Powell, American Commander (Union Navy), dies at 81
  • Jan 16 Edmond François Valentin About, French writer (Le Roi des montagnes), dies at 56
  • Jan 19 Fred Burnaby, English colonel/balloon pioneer, dies in battle
  • Jan 24 Martin Delany, African-American abolitionist and physician (1st African American major in US Army), dies at 72
  • Jan 26 Charles George Gordon, British Governor-General of Sudan, executed at 51
  • Jan 26 Edward Davy, English inventor (b. 1806)