On This Day

Events in History in 1869

Historic Event

Jan 1 War of the Triple Alliance: Paraguay's capital Asunción falls to Brazilian forces led by General João de Souza da Fonseca Costa

  • Jan 13 Colored National Labor Union, 1st Black labor convention meets in Washington, D.C.
  • Jan 18 Elegant California Theater opens in San Francisco

Historic Event

Jan 20 Elizabeth Cady Stanton becomes 1st woman to testify before US Congress

  • Feb 2 James Oliver invents removable tempered steel plow blade
  • Feb 3 Booth Theater at 23rd & 6th opens in NYC (Romeo & Juliet)
  • Feb 5 World's largest alluvial gold nugget, the Welcome Stranger, found by John Deason and Richard Oates (weighting 97.14kg) in Moliagul, Australia
  • Feb 6 Harper's Weekly publishes 1st picture of Uncle Sam with chin whiskers

Historic Event

Feb 15 Charges of Treason against Jefferson Davis are dropped

  • Feb 19 US Assay Office in Boise, Idaho authorized
  • Feb 20 Tennessee Governor W C Brownlow declares martial law in Ku Klux Klan crisis
  • Feb 23 Louisiana governor signs public accommodations law
  • Feb 26 US 15th Amendment guaranteeing right to vote sent to states to ratify
  • Feb 27 John Menard is 1st African American to make a speech in the US Congress
  • Mar 1 US Postage stamps showing scenes issued for 1st time. These pictorials showed a post horse and rider, a locomotive, a shield, an eagle and a ship, the Adriatic.
  • Mar 3 University of South Carolina opens to all races

President Inaugurated

Mar 4 Ulysses S. Grant inaugurated as 18th US President

Historic Event

Mar 6 Dmitri Mendeleev presents the first periodic table of the elements to the Russian Chemical Society

  • Mar 11 The West first learns of the Giant Panda via French missionary Armand David who receives a skin from a hunter
  • Mar 13 Arkansas legislature passes anti-Ku Klux Klan law
  • Mar 14 Defeat of Maori Ngāti Ruanui leader Riwha Titokowaru in Taranaki, New Zealand by British forces

Historic Event

Mar 16 Hiram R. Revels makes 1st official speech by an African American in the Senate

  • Apr 8 American Museum of Natural History opens in New York City
  • Apr 9 Hudson Bay Company cedes its territory to Canada
  • Apr 10 Congress increases number of Supreme Court judges from 7 to 9
  • Apr 10 José Martí founds the Cuban Revolutionary Party.
  • Apr 12 North Carolina legislature passes anti-Ku Klux Klan Law

Historic Invention

Apr 13 Steam power brake patented (George Westinghouse)

  • Apr 16 Ebenezer Bassett, 1st African American diplomat, begins service as Minister to Haiti
  • Apr 30 Hawaiian YMCA organized
  • May 1 Folies Bergère opens in Paris
  • May 4 The Naval Battle of Hakodate takes place in Japan.

The Golden Spike

May 10 Golden Spike driven, completing the 1st US Transcontinental Railroad at Promontory Summit, Utah and connecting the Central Pacific Railroad with the Union Pacific

  • May 15 National Woman Suffrage Association forms in New York, founded by Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  • May 18 Robert Tanner Freeman is 1st African American to graduate from Harvard Dental School
  • May 18 Surrender and dissolution of the Ezo Republic to Japan
  • May 26 Boston University is chartered by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Historic Invention

Jun 1 Thomas Edison granted his first patent for the Electric Vote Recorder (U.S. Patent 90,646)

  • Jun 8 Ives W. McGaffey of Chicago patents the 1st vacuum cleaner, calls it a "sweeping machine"
  • Jun 10 'Agnes' arrives in New Orleans with 1st ever shipment of frozen beef
  • Jun 15 World's 1st plastic celluloid is patented by John Wesley Hyatt in Albany, NY
  • Jun 15 Mike McCoole (US) defeats Tom Allen (England) in bare-knuckle bout

Historic Event

Jun 21 William James 'the Father of American Psychology' passes his medical examination at Harvard Medical School

  • Jun 28 Amsterdam typographer strike
  • Jul 1 Dutch newspaper stamp tax repealed
  • Jul 1 US mint at Carson City, Nevada opens
  • Jul 6 Black candidate for lieutenant governor of Virginia, Dr J. H. Harris defeated
  • Jul 15 Margarine is patented by Hippolye Méga-Mouriès for use by French Navy

Historic Event

Jul 19 Louis Riel speaks at a meeting of Metis residents about rights, setting in motion the events now referred to as the Red River Rebellion

  • Jul 30 The Charles, considered the world’s first "oil tanker", departs from the United States headed for Europe with a bulk capacity of 7,000 barrels of oil
  • Aug 1 1st voyage down Colorado River
  • Aug 10 O B Brown patents moving picture projector
  • Aug 12 Self-proclaimed Emperor Joshua Abraham Norton of the USA issues edict abolishing the Democratic and Republican parties
  • Aug 15 The Meiji government in Japan establishes six new ministries, including one for Shinto.
  • Aug 16 War of the Triple Alliance: A Paraguay battalion made up of children is massacred by the Brazilian Army during the Battle of Acosta Ñu
  • Aug 23 1st carload of rail freight (boots & shoes) arrives in San Francisco, from Boston after a 16-day trip
  • Aug 24 American inventor Cornelius Swarthout patents stove-top waffle iron
  • Aug 27 1st international boat race (River Thames, Oxford beats Harvard)

Historic Event

Sep 1 Construction begins on the Grand Central Depot for Cornelius Vanderbilt's New York and Harlem Railroad (later replaced by Grand Central Station)

  • Sep 6 1st westbound train arrives in San Francisco
  • Sep 6 Mine fire kills 110 at Avondale, Pennsylvania
  • Sep 10 Baptist minister supposedly invents rickshaw in Yokohama, Japan
  • Sep 13 Jay Gould & James Fisk attempt to control US gold market
  • Sep 24 Black Friday; Wall St panic after Gould & Fisk attempt to corner gold
  • Oct 1 1st postcards are issued (Vienna, Austria)
  • Oct 5 A strong hurricane known as the Saxby Gale devastates the Bay of Fundy region in Maritime Canada. Incredibly British naval officer Stephen Martin Saxby predicted the storm 10 months earlier in December 1868 via astronomy.
  • Oct 5 Man-made tunnel under St. Anthony Falls, Minnesota collapses, threatening the Minneapolis riverfront
  • Oct 16 Hotel in Boston becomes 1st to have indoor plumbing

Historic Event

Oct 18 Henrik Ibsen's "De Unges Forbund" (The League of Youth) premieres in Christiania (Oslo), Norway

  • Oct 21 1st shipment of fresh oysters comes overland from Baltimore
  • Nov 1 Deli Me forms T B V tobacco in Sumatra
  • Nov 3 Canada's Hamilton Football Club forms
  • Nov 15 Free postal delivery formally inaugurated
  • Nov 17 Suez Canal in Egypt opens, linking Mediterranean and Red seas
  • Nov 23 The clipper Cutty Sark is launched In Dumbarton, Scotland, one of the last clippers ever built and the only one still surviving
  • Nov 24 American Woman's Suffrage Association forms (Cleveland)
  • Dec 8 20th Roman Catholic ecumenical council, Vatican I, opens in Rome
  • Dec 8 Timothy Eaton founds T. Eaton Co. Limited in Toronto, Canada.
  • Dec 9 Noble Order of Knights of Labor founded, Philadelphia
  • Dec 10 Women suffrage (right to vote) granted in Wyoming Territory (US 1st)
  • Dec 10 The first American chapter of Kappa Sigma is founded at the University of Virginia.
  • Dec 18 Canada's Hamilton Football Club plays its 1st game
  • Dec 28 William Finley Semple of Mount Vernon, Ohio, patents chewing gum
  • Dec 30 Philadelphia Knights of Labor forms