What Happened in 1896

Important Events

  • Jan 1 German physicist Wilhelm Röntgen announces his discovery of x-rays
  • Jan 29 Emile Grubbe is the first doctor to use radiation treatment for breast cancer
  • May 18 Khodynka Tragedy: A mass panic on Khodynka Field, Moscow, during the festivities of the coronation of Russian Tsar Nicholas II, results in the deaths of 1,389 people
  • May 26 Dow Jones begins an index of 12 industrial stocks (closing is 40.94)
  • Jun 2 Guglielmo Marconi applies to patent the radio, accepted 2 July 1897
  • Jun 15 Tsunami strikes Shinto festival on beach at Sanriku, Japan; 27,000 are killed, 9,000 injured and 13,000 houses destroyed
  • Aug 16 Gold first discovered in Klondike, found at Bonanza Creek, Alaska by George Carmack
  • Nov 14 Power plant at Niagara Falls begins operation
More Historical Events

1896 in Film & TV

  • Apr 23 Vitascope system of movie projection 1st shown at Koster & Bial's Music Hall (NYC)
  • Jul 26 Vitascope Hall, 1st permanent for-profit movie theatre, opens in New Orleans

1896 in Music

  • Feb 1 Giacomo Puccini's Opera "La Boheme" premieres in Turin
  • Mar 28 Umberto Giordano's opera "Andrea Chenier" premieres at La Scala, Milan with Giuseppe Borgatti singing the title role
  • Apr 20 1st public film showing in US John Philip Sousa's "El Capitan" premieres in NYC
  • Apr 23 Vitascope system of movie projection 1st shown at Koster & Bial's Music Hall (NYC)

1896 in Sport

  • Mar 22 Charilaos Vasilakos of Greece wins 1st modern marathon in 3:18 at the Panhellenic Games
  • Apr 6 I Summer Olympic Games open in Athens, Greece; American athlete James Connolly Olympic becomes first modern Olympic champion when he wins the triple jump (then 2 hops and a jump); later 3rd in the long jump, 2nd in the high jump
  • Apr 10 Spyridon Louis of Greece wins inaugural Olympic marathon (2:58:50) in Athens; runs last lap accompanied by Constantine I
  • Apr 15 I Summer Olympic Games close in Athens, Greece; USA wins gold medal count, 11; Greece wins total medal count, 46; IOC has retroactively assigned gold, silver & bronze medals to 3 best placed athletes in each event

World Leaders in 1896

Famous People in 1896

Would You Believe?

Samuel Pierpont Langley flies his unpiloted Number 5 aircraft using a catapult launch from a boat on the Potomac River, USA. The aircraft travels almost 3/4 of a mile - ten times further than any previous heavier-than-air flying machine.

On May 6, 1896

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