On This Day

1887 in History

Events in History

  • Jan 5 1st US school of librarianship opens at Columbia University

BattleBattle of Interest

Jan 6 `Abd-allah II of Harar opens the Battle of Chelenqo with an attack on the camp of the Shewan army of Negus Menelik II

Emperor of Ethiopia Menelik II
Emperor of Ethiopia
Menelik II
  • Jan 16 Cliff House damaged when powder cargo of schooner "Parallel" explodes
  • Jan 20 US Senate approves naval base lease of Pearl Harbor
  • Jan 21 Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) forms
  • Jan 21 Brisbane receives a daily rainfall of 465 millimetres (18.3 inches), a record for any Australian capital city
  • Jan 26 Battle of Dogali: Abyssinian Emperor John IV defeats Italians
  • Jan 28 England all out for 45 v Aust SCG, their lowest total ever
  • Jan 28 In a snowstorm at Fort Keogh, Montana, the world's largest snowflakes are reported, being 15 inches (38 cm) wide and 8 inches (20 cm) thick.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 28 Work begins on the Eiffel Tower in Paris

Engineer and Architect Gustave Eiffel
Engineer and Architect
Gustave Eiffel
  • Feb 2 In Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, the first Groundhog Day is observed.
  • Feb 3 To avoid disputed national elections, the US Congress creates Electoral Count Act
  • Feb 4 Interstate Commerce Act authorizes federal regulation of railroads
  • Feb 5 Snow falls on San Francisco
  • Feb 8 Aurora Ski Club of Red Wing, Minn became the 1st US ski club
  • Feb 8 The Dawes Act authorizes the President of the United States to survey Native American tribal land and divide it into individual allotments. Those who accepted allotments and lived separately from the tribe were granted United States citizenship.

  • Feb 16 1st newspaper convention (Rochester NY)
  • Feb 16 Eduard Douwes Dekker writes his last text (Lf8-c5)
  • Feb 20 Germany, Austria-Hungary & France end Triple Alliance
  • Feb 21 1st US bacteriology laboratory opens (Brooklyn)
  • Feb 21 Oregon becomes 1st US state to make Labor Day a holiday
  • Feb 22 Union Labor Party organized in Cincinnati
  • Feb 23 US Congress grants Seal Rocks to San Francisco
  • Feb 23 French/Italian Riviera struck by Earthquake; 2,000 die
  • Mar 3 American Protective Association forms (anti-Catholic) in Clinton Iowa

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 3 Anne Sullivan begins teaching 6 year old blind-deaf Helen Keller

Author Helen Keller
Author
Helen Keller
  • Mar 7 North Carolina State University is founded by the North Carolina General Assembly.
  • Mar 8 Everett Horton, CT, patents fishing rod of telescoping steel tubes
  • Mar 15 1st salaried fish & game warden (William Alden Smith in Michigan)
  • Mar 24 Oscar Straus appointed 1st Jewish ambassador from US (to Turkey)
  • Apr 4 Susanna Madora Salter elected 1st US woman mayor in Argonia, Kansas
  • Apr 5 Anne Sullivan teaches "water" to Helen Keller

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 10 US President Abraham Lincoln's re-buried with his wife in Springfield, Illinois

16th US President Abraham Lincoln
16th US President
Abraham Lincoln

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 12 Henrik Ibsen's "Rosmersholm" premieres in Oslo

Playwright Henrik Ibsen
Playwright
Henrik Ibsen
  • Apr 26 Huntsville Electric Co forms to sell electricity

InventionHistoric Invention

May 2 Hannibal Goodwin patents celluloid photographic film (used in Thomas Edison's Kinetoscope)

Inventor Thomas Edison
Inventor
Thomas Edison

  • May 9 Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West Show opens in London
  • May 23 1st transcontinental train arrives in Vancouver, British Columbia
  • May 24 Sultan Bargash of Zanzibar grants E African Association at East African harbors
  • May 26 Racetrack betting becomes legal in NY state

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jun 4 Pasteur Institute founded by French biologist Louis Pasteur in Paris

Bacteriologist Louis Pasteur
Bacteriologist
Louis Pasteur
  • Jun 7 Monotype type-casting machine patented by Tolbert Lanston, Washington, D.C.
  • Jun 8 Herman Hollerith receives a patent for his punch card calculator
  • Jun 15 Carlisle D Graham survives 2nd ride in Niagara waterfall in barrel
  • Jun 15 Stanley's expedition reaches Yambuya waterfalls Congo
  • Jun 18 The Reinsurance Treaty between Germany and Russia is signed

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jun 21 Britain celebrates golden jubilee of Queen Victoria

Queen of the United Kingdom Queen Victoria
Queen of the United Kingdom
Queen Victoria

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 4 Future founder of Pakistan, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, begins his studies at Sindh Madressatul Islam University in Karachi

Founder of Pakistan Mohammed Ali Jinnah
Founder of Pakistan
Mohammed Ali Jinnah
  • Jul 5 Columbia University 4's crew becomes first American boat to win at London's Henley Regatta (Visitors Challenge Cup)
  • Jul 26 1st Esperanto book published
  • Aug 2 Rowell Hodge patents barbed wire
  • Aug 10 Excursion train crashes killing 101. (Chatsworth, Illinois)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 19 Dmitri Mendeleev makes a solo ascent by balloon to an altitude of 11,500 feet (3.5 km) above Klin, Russia to observe an eclipse

Chemist and Inventor Dmitri Mendeleev
Chemist and Inventor
Dmitri Mendeleev
  • Sep 1 Dutch Amateur Photography Cooperation established
  • Sep 5 Gas lamp at Theatre Royal in Exeter catches fire killing about 200
  • Sep 15 Philadelphia celebrates 100th anniversary of US Constitution
  • Sep 26 Emile Berliner patents the Gramophone
  • Sep 28 Yellow River or Huáng Hé floods in China, killing between 900,000 and 2 million people, one of the deadliest natural disasters in history
  • Oct 1 Balochistan conquered by the British Empire.
  • Oct 11 A Miles patents elevator
  • Oct 21 Detroit clinches best-of-15 touring World Championship with its 8th victory in Game 11 this afternoon in Baltimore, 13-3
  • Nov 11 Anarchist Haymarket Martyrs August Spies (b. 1855), Albert Parsons (b. 1848), Adolph Fischer (b. 1858) and George Engel (b. 1836) are executed.
  • Nov 11 Construction of the Manchester Ship Canal starts at Eastham.
  • Nov 13 Bloody Sunday clashes in central London
  • Nov 15 British SS Wah Yeung catches fire on Canton River off Hong Kong
  • Nov 23 Notre Dame loses its 1st football game 8-0 to Michigan
  • Nov 24 Victorien Sardou's "La Tosca" premieres in Paris
  • Nov 29 US receives rights to Pearl Harbor, on Oahu, Hawaii
  • Nov 30 1st indoor softball game in Chicago

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 1 Sherlock Holmes first appears in print in "Study in Scarlet" by Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Dec 1 Sino-Portuguese treaty recognizes Portugal's control of Macao
  • Dec 2 Amsterdam's Oscar Carrés Circus Theater opens
  • Dec 2 French president Jules Grévy resigns
  • Dec 5 Stanley's expedition reaches plateau at Lake Albert Congo
  • Dec 10 Austria-Hungary, Italy and Great Britain sign Balkan military treaty
  • Dec 17 Georges Feydeau's "Tailleur Pour Dames" premieres in Paris
  • Dec 19 Jake Kilrain & Jem Smith fight 106 round bare knuckle draw

Birthdays in History

  • Jan 1 Wilhelm Canaris, German admiral/head German military intelligence
  • Jan 3 Helen Parkhurst, US educator (Education on the Dalton plan)
  • Jan 3 August Macke, German painter (d. 1914)
  • Jan 10 Robinson Jeffers, American poet & playwright (Tamar & Other Poems, Medea), born in Allegheny, Pennsylvania (d. 1962)
  • Jan 11 Aldo Leopold, American conservationist, professor and co-founder of the Wilderness Society, born in Burlington, Iowa (d. 1949)
  • Jan 13 George Gurdjieff, Armenian-Greek mystic (d. 1949)
  • Jan 17 Ola Raknes, Norwegian psychoanalyst and philologist (d. 1975)
  • Jan 19 Alexander Woollcott, American critic and short story writer (The Man Who Came to Dinner), born in Phalanx, New Jersey (d. 1943)
  • Jan 22 Helen Hoyt, American poet (d. 1972)
  • Jan 25 Diego Valeri, Italian author & poet (Le Gaie Tristezze), born in Piove di Sacco, Italy (d. 1976)
  • Jan 26 Enrique E Ecker, Curacao, bacteriologist
  • Jan 26 Marc A "Pete" Mitscher, US lt-admiral (WW II-Task Force 58)
  • Jan 26 Arnout Colnot, Dutch painter and graphic artist, born in Amsterdam (d. 1983)
  • Jan 27 Carl Blegen, archaeologist (excavator at Troy, Pylos), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Feb 1 Dirk Roosenburg, Dutch architect
  • Feb 1 Charles Nordhoff, English-born author (d. 1947)
  • Feb 3 Georg Trakl, Austrian poet (Autumn of the Lonely)
  • Feb 3 Silvio d'Amico, Italian theater critic (Tramonto del grande attore)
  • Feb 3 Juan Negrín, Spanish Prime Minister (d. 1956)
  • Feb 6 Josef Frings, German Archbishop of Cologne, born in Neuss, Germany (d. 1978)
  • Feb 9 Vital Celen, Flemish writer (Puppy Love)
  • Feb 10 [Fran J] Vital Celen, Flemish literary/author [or Feb 9]
  • Feb 11 John van Melle, South African writer (Dawid Booysen)
  • Feb 15 H M Bateman, Sutton Forest NSW, cartoonist
  • Feb 20 Hesketh Pearson, England, biographer/playwright (Writ for Libel)

Person of interestVincent Massey

Feb 20 Vincent Massey, Canadian diplomat, first Canadian-born Governor General of Canada (1952-59), born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 1967)

Governor General of Canada Vincent Massey
Governor General of Canada
Vincent Massey
  • Feb 22 Mary Ellen Chase, educator/author (Windswept, 1959 Sarah Hale Award)
  • Feb 24 Mary Ellen Chase, US linguistic/author (White Gate)
  • Feb 26 Benegal Narsing Rau, Indian lawyer and civil servant, President of UN Security Council (1950), helped draft India's constitution, born in Mangalore, India (d. 1953)
  • Feb 26 Stefan Grabinski, Polish writer (d. 1936)
  • Feb 27 James D Innes, English painter
  • Feb 28 William Zorach, Lithuanian-American sculptor (Spirit of the Dance), born in Jurbarkas, Lithuania, Russian Empire (d. 1966)
  • Mar 9 Fritz Lenz, German geneticist, born in Redło, Goleniów County, Poland (d. 1976)
  • Mar 10 Toshitsugu Takamatsu, Grandmaster of Ninjutsu (d. 1972)
  • Mar 14 George Creten, Belgian sculptor and painter, born in Saint-Gilles, Belgium (d. 1966)
  • Mar 14 Sylvia Beach, American publisher and bookseller (Shakespeare and Company), born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 1962)
  • Mar 15 Marjorie Merriweather Post, American socialite and businesswoman (d. 1973)
  • Mar 17 Ben Sajet, Dutch physician/politician
  • Mar 21 Edwin Scharff, German "entartet" painter/sculptor
  • Mar 23 Felix Yussupov, Russian aristocrat, best known for participating in the assassination of Grigori Rasputin, born in Moika Palace, Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire (d. 1967)
  • Mar 23 Juan Gris, Spanish cubist painter (Still Life Before an Open Window)
  • Mar 23 Sidney Hillman, union leader (Sidney Hillman Foundation)
  • Mar 30 Albert P Termote, Flemish/Dutch sculptor (Charles the Great)
  • Apr 1 Leonard Bloomfield, US linguist
  • Apr 4 William Cumming Rose, American biochemist who discovered threonine (an amino acid), born in Greenville, South Carolina (d. 1985)
  • Apr 5 Hedwig Kohn, Jewish physics pioneer, born in Breslau, Province of Silesia (Poland) (d. 1964)
  • Apr 10 Bernardo Houssay, Argentine physiologist (Nobel 1947), born in Buenos Aires, Argentina (d. 1971)
  • Apr 13 Gordon S. Fahrni, Canadian physician and President of the Canadian Medical Association, born in Gladstone, Manitoba (d. 1995)
  • Apr 24 Denys Finch Hatton, English big-game hunter, born in Kensington, London (d. 1931)
  • May 1 Alan Cunningham, British general and last High Commissioner of Palestine (1945-48), born in Dublin, Ireland (d. 1983)
  • May 5 Geoffrey Fisher, Baron Fisher of Lambeth, Archbishop of Canterbury (1945-61), born in Nuneaton, Warwickshire, England (d. 1972)
  • May 7 Henri Pourrat, French writer (Gaspard of the Montagnes), born in Ambert, France (d. 1959)
  • May 9 Jules Van de Leene, Belgian painter, born in Ixelles, Belgium (d. 1962)
  • May 10 Jacobus C Bloem, Dutch poet (Sintels)
  • May 16 Jakob van Hoddis [Hans Davidsohn], German Jewish poet (d. 1942?)
  • May 18 Ernst Wiechert, German writer (The Simple Life), born in Kleinort, East Prussia (d. 1950)
  • May 23 Thoralf Skolem, Norwegian mathematician (d. 1963)
  • May 24 Edward "Mick" Mannock, British WWI flying ace (Victoria Cross), born in British Isles (d. 1918)
  • May 25 Padre Pio, Roman Catholic saint, born in Pietrelcina, Benevento, Kingdom of Italy (d. 1968)
  • May 27 Emiel van der Straeten, Flemish playwright (Sudanese legends) (d. 1918)
  • May 27 Erich Kuttner, German journalist and historian (Vorwarts), born in Berlin (d. 1942)
  • May 30 Alexander Archipenko, Ukrainian-American sculptor and lithographer, born in Kyiv, Russian Empire (d. 1964)
  • May 31 Saint-John Perse, French diplomat and poet (Nobel 1960), born in Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe (d. 1975)
  • Jun 5 Ruth Benedict, American anthropologist (Patterns of Culture), born in NYC, New York (d. 1948)
  • Jun 7 William Walraven, Dutch journalist and writer (Indian Daily) (d. 1943)
  • Jun 13 Bruno Frank, German-born writer, born in Stuttgart (d. 1945)
  • Jun 20 Kurt Schwitters, German-British dada-artist and poet (collages), born in Hanover (d. 1948)
  • Jun 21 Norman L. Bowen, Canadian petrologist, born in Kingston, Ontario, Canada (d. 1956)
  • Jun 22 Julian S. Huxley, English biologist/philosopher, Darwin's Bulldog, born in London, England (d. 1975)
  • Jun 23 Ernst Rowohlt, German publisher (Rowohlt-Verlag)
  • Jun 26 Anthony Gustav de Rothschild, British philanthropist, born in London (d. 1961)
  • Jul 2 Marcel Tabuteau, French-American oboist (Philadelphia Orch 1915-54), born in Compiègne, Oise, France (d. 1966)
  • Jul 6 Marc Chagall, Russian-French artist (I & The Village), born in Vitebsk, Russian Empire (d. 1985)
  • Jul 7 Dirk Koster, literary (New Noises)
  • Jul 9 Samuel Eliot Morison, American historian (Admiral of the Ocean Sea), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1976)

Person of interestVidkun Quisling

Jul 18 Vidkun Quisling, Norwegian Minister of Defense and Prime Minister (1942-45), born in Fyresdal, Norway (d. 1945)

Prime Minister of Norway and Nazi Collaborator Vidkun Quisling
Prime Minister of Norway and Nazi Collaborator
Vidkun Quisling
  • Jul 20 Willem H Drucker, Dutch lawyer
  • Jul 22 Gustav Hertz, German quantum physicist (Nobel 1925)

Person of interestMarcel Duchamp

Jul 28 Marcel Duchamp, French sculptor and painter (Nude Descending a Staircase), born in Blainville-Crevon, France (d. 1968)

Painter and Sculptor Marcel Duchamp
Painter and Sculptor
Marcel Duchamp
  • Jul 30 Felix Andries Vening Meinesz, Dutch geophysicist (gravity), born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1966)
  • Jul 31 Hans Freyer, German sociologist and philosopher, born in Leipzig, Germany (d. 1969)
  • Aug 3 Rupert Brooke, British WW I poet (Lithuania, The Soldier), born in Rugby, England (d. 1915)
  • Aug 7 Jan HA Eman, Aruban politician
  • Aug 8 J C Heldring, Dutch businessman
  • Aug 9 Abraham Schierbeek, Dutch biologist (Swammerdam)

Person of interestErwin Schrödinger

Aug 12 Erwin Schrodinger, Austrian physicist and Nobel Prize Laureate (wave mechanics), born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1961)

Physicist and Nobel Laureate Erwin Schrödinger
Physicist and Nobel Laureate
Erwin Schrödinger
  • Aug 13 Julius Freed, American inventor and banker (d. 1952)
  • Aug 17 Charles I, last emperor of Austria-Hungary (1916-18)

Person of interestMarcus Garvey

Aug 17 Marcus Garvey, Jamaican-born black nationalist who began the back-to-Africa movement among US African Americans, born in Saint Ann's Bay, Jamaica (d. 1940)

Black Nationalist Marcus Garvey
Black Nationalist
Marcus Garvey
  • Aug 18 Nico J. Polak, Dutch economist, born in Rotterdam, Netherlands (d. 1948)
  • Aug 30 Adam Kuckhoff, German writer and resistance fighter, born in Aachen, Germany (d. 1943)
  • Aug 31 Friedrich A Paneth, Austrian-British chemist, born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1958)
  • Sep 1 Blaise Cendrars [Frederic Sauser-Hall], Swiss poet/writer
  • Sep 1 Otto Eissfeldt, German old testament scholar
  • Sep 7 Edith Sitwell, English poet and author (Wheels), born in Scarborough, North Yorkshire (d. 1964)
  • Sep 8 George, Crown Prince of Serbia, eldest son of King Peter I, born in Cetinje, Montenegro (d. 1972)
  • Sep 9 Alf (Alfred) Landon, (R-Ks) American politician and Presidential candidate (1932, 1936). Dies 1987
  • Sep 10 Giovanni Gronchi, Italian politician, President of Italy (1955-62), born in Pontedera, Italy (d. 1978)
  • Sep 13 Leopold Ružička, Croatian-Swiss chemist (Nobel 1939), born in Vukovar, Croatia (d. 1976)
  • Sep 14 Karl Taylor Compton, American physicist and 9th President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, born in Wooster, Ohio (d. 1954)

Weddings in History


LoveWedding of Interest

Apr 22 Business magnate Andrew Carnegie (51) weds Louise Whitfield (30) in NYC, New York

Industrialist and Philanthropist Andrew Carnegie
Industrialist and Philanthropist
Andrew Carnegie

LoveWedding of Interest

Nov 9 Anna Mary Robertson (27), later to become painter known as Grandma Moses, weds Thomas Salmon Moses in New York

Primitive Painter Grandma Moses
Primitive Painter
Grandma Moses

Deaths in History

  • Jan 1 Johan Hendrik Koelman, Dutch portrait painter, dies at 66
  • Jan 14 Friedrich von Amerling, Austrian painter, dies at 83
  • Jan 14 Peter Donders, Dutch Roman Catholic missionary to Suriname, dies at 77
  • Jan 17 William Giblin, Premier of Tasmania (b. 1840)
  • Feb 10 Ellen Wood, English author (Pomeroy Abbey), dies at 73
  • Feb 10 Pieter Jan Baptist Carel Robidé van der Aa, Dutch Indologist and geographer, dies at 54
  • Feb 19 Multatuli [Eduard Douwes Dekker], Dutch writer (Max Havelaar), dies at 66
  • Mar 2 August W. Eichler, German botanist (developed a new system of classification of plants to reflect the concept of evolution), dies at 47
  • Mar 8 Pavel Annenkov, Russian literature historian/critic, dies at 73 (b. 1813)
  • Mar 8 Henry Ward Beecher, American clergyman (b. 1813)
  • Mar 8 James Buchanan Eads, American engineer and inventor (Eads Bridge-St Louis), dies at 66
  • Mar 24 Ivan Kramskoi, Russian painter and art critic, dies at 49
  • Mar 28 Ditler G Monrad, Danish bishop/premier (1863-..), dies at 75
  • Apr 20 Muhammad Sharif Pasha, Egyptian statesman (b. 1826)
  • May 7 Samuel Cousins, English mezzotint engraver, dies at 85
  • May 7 C. F. W. Walther, American Lutheran theologian (b. 1811)
  • May 8 Alexander Ulyanov, brother of Lenin/hanged for assassination of tsar
  • May 11 Jean Baptiste Boussingault, French chemist, dies at 85
  • May 14 Lysander Spooner, American philosopher (b. 1808)
  • May 14 William Burnham Woods, American politician, judge, and Brevet Major General (Union Army), dies at 62
  • May 27 Coenraad J van Houten, Dutch cocoa manufacturer, dies at 86
  • Jun 4 William A. Wheeler, American politician (19th Vice President of the United States), dies at 67
  • Jul 5 August F Pott, German philological (That Personennamen), dies
  • Jul 14 Alfred Krupp, German arms merchant, dies at 75
  • Jul 16 Nicaise de Keyser, Flemish painter (Battle at Woeringen), dies at 73

Person of interestDorothea Dix

Jul 17 Dorothea Dix, American pioneering nurse and social activist who created the first American mental asylums, dies at 85

Nurse and Social Activist Dorothea Dix
Nurse and Social Activist
Dorothea Dix
  • Jul 25 John Taylor, American religious leader (3rd President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), dies at 78
  • Jul 29 Agostino Depretis, Italian statesman, Prime Minister of Italy (1876-78, 1778-79, 1881-87), dies at 74
  • Aug 1 Joseph Rainey, American politician, 1st African American in US House of Representatives (1870-1879), dies at 55
  • Aug 8 Alexander William Doniphan, American lawyer and soldier, dies at 79
  • Aug 14 Richard Jefferies, English naturalist and essayist, dies of tuberculosis at 38
  • Aug 18 Orson Squire Fowler, American phrenologist and lecturer, dies at 77
  • Aug 19 Alvan Clark, American astronomer and maker of the Dearborn Observatory telescope, the largest telescope in the world at the time, dies at 83
  • Aug 20 Jules Laforgue, French poet (Les Complaintas), dies at 27
  • Sep 14 Friedrich Theodor Vischer, German philosopher and writer (Auch einer), dies at 80
  • Sep 21 William Preston, American lawyer, politician and Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 70
  • Sep 29 Bernhard von Langenbeck, German surgeon and founder of Langenbeck's Archives of Surgery, dies at 76
  • Oct 12 Dinah Craik, English writer (John Halifax, Gentleman), dies at 61
  • Oct 17 Gustav Kirchhoff, German physicist (spectroscopy, coined "black body" radiation), dies at 63

Person of interestDoc Holliday

Nov 8 Doc Holliday, American gambler and gunfighter, dies at 36

Gunfighter in the American Old West Doc Holliday
Gunfighter in the American Old West
Doc Holliday
  • Nov 18 Gustav Fechner, German psychologist and physicist (Weber–Fechner law), dies at 86

Person of interestEmma Lazarus

Nov 19 Emma Lazarus, American poet ("Give us your tired & poor"), dies in New York at 38

  • Nov 20 Louis Gallait, Belgian historical painter (Egmont & Receiver), dies at 77
  • Nov 25 Johann J Bachofen, Swiss historic rights, dies at 71
  • Dec 1 Albertus J Duymaer van Twist, gov-gen of Dutch-Indies, dies at 78
  • Dec 5 Eliza Roxcy Snow, American poet (b. 1804)
  • Dec 9 Mahmadu Lamine, Senegalese marabout and military leader