Events in History in 1839

Famous Photo

Jan 2 1st photo of the Moon (French photographer Louis Daguerre)

  • Jan 6 2 day storm off Irish & English coast immortalized as the "Big Wind"
  • Jan 9 Thomas Henderson measures 1st stellar parallax (Alpha Centauri)
  • Jan 10 First tea from leaves of indigenous plants of Assam, India arrives in the United Kingdom [date approximate] [1]
  • Jan 11 Earthquake at Martinique destroys half of Port Royal - 700 die
  • Jan 12 Anthracite coal 1st used to smelt iron, Mauch Chunk, Penn
  • Jan 19 Aden conquered by British East India Company
  • Jan 20 Battle of Yungay, Chile defeats a Peruvian and Bolivian alliance

Election of Interest

Jan 24 Charles Darwin elected Fellow of the Royal Society

Famous Photo

Jan 25 Henry Fox Talbot exhibits early photographs to the Royal Institution in the UK

Historic Event

Feb 7 Henry Clay declares in Senate "I had rather be right than president"

  • Feb 12 Aroostoock (or "Pork & Beans) War: Boundary dispute between Maine & New Brunswick
  • Feb 18 Detroit Boat Club forms (& still exists)
  • Feb 20 Congress prohibits dueling in District of Columbia
  • Feb 24 Steam shovel patented by William Otis, Philadelphia
  • Feb 25 Seminoles & black allies shipped from Tampa Bay Florida, to the West
  • Mar 9 Prussian government limits work week for children to 51 hours
  • Mar 23 1st recorded use of "OK" [oll korrect] (Boston's Morning Post)
  • Mar 26 1st Henley Royal Regatta on the river Thames, England
  • Apr 17 Guatemala forms a republic
  • Apr 19 Treaty of London constitutes Belgium an independent kingdom & Luxembourg a Grand Duchy
  • May 4 The Cunard Steamship Company Ltd forms San Bonifacio
  • Jun 7 Hawaiian Declaration of Rights is signed
  • Jun 14 First Henley Regatta held (it became the Henley Royal Regatta in 1851)
  • Jun 17 King of Hawaii Kamehameha III issues Edict of toleration which gives Roman Catholics freedom to worship in the Hawaiian Islands. The Hawaii Catholic Church and the Cathedral of Our Lady of Peace is later established

Historic Event

Jul 1 Abdul-Medjid succeeds Mahmud II as Sultan of the Ottoman Empire

  • Jul 2 Slaves aboard a Spanish schooner La Amistad revolt to secure their freedom while being transported from one Cuban port to another
  • Jul 3 1st state normal school in US opens, Lexington, Massachusetts, with 3 students
  • Jul 27 Chartist riots break out in Birmingham, England
  • Aug 8 Beta Theta Pi is founded in Oxford, Ohio.
  • Aug 19 Details of Louis Daguerre's 1st practical photographic process are released in Paris
  • Aug 23 British capture Hong Kong from China
  • Sep 2 Salon of Varietes opens in Amsterdam
  • Sep 5 The First Opium War begins in China

Trail of Tears

Sep 6 Cherokee Nation unites and ratifies constitution at Tahlequah, Oklahoma

  • Sep 6 Great fire in New York

Famous Photo

Sep 9 English scientist and astronomer John Herschel takes 1st glass plate photograph

  • Sep 20 1st railroad in Netherland opens (Amsterdam-Haarlem)
  • Sep 28 British Association expedition to Antarctica ships Erebus and Terror set sail from England, to attempt to locate magnetic South Pole

Historic Event

Oct 10 British troops under General Charles Napier occupy Beirut

  • Oct 16 Joseph Saxton, a machine inspector at the US Mint, takes 1st daguerrotype photograph in US, of Central High School building in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Oct 20 Margaret Fuller is appointed editor of new US Transcendental Magazine "The Dial"
  • Nov 3 First Opium War - 2 British frigates engage several Chinese junks
  • Nov 3 Palace of Gulhane Turkey, freedom of religion proclaimed
  • Nov 4 The Newport Rising is the last large-scale armed rebellion against authority in mainland Britain
  • Nov 11 The Virginia Military Institute is founded in Lexington, Virginia.
  • Nov 13 1st US anti-slavery party, Liberty Party, convenes in NY
  • Nov 25 Cyclone slams south eastern India with high winds and a 40 foot storm surge, destroying city of Coringa. Storm waves sweep inland, destroying 20,000 ships and killing an estimated 300,000 people.
  • Nov 27 American Statistical Association organizes in Boston
  • Dec 18 John William Draper takes 1st portrait photograph of a female face made in US