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Drift stately canals of Mars.

Escort caravans through the desert domains of the steppe nomads. Fight the winged warriors and cloud ships of the Martian Sky Lords.

Undertake a secret mission for the crown on Venus.

Elude the agents of the Kaiser; avoid capture by the German war zeppelins; survive the steaming, Venusian swamps, with their savage amphibious natives and gigantic dinosaurs.
Explore the mysterious caverns and grottos of Luna. Venture deep into the dark interior on search of the Selenites.

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Time Line


Rene Descartes proposed the idea of one all-pervasive ether, believed by 19th-century physicists to be universal and to be the necessary medium for the propagation of electromagnetic radiation.

1667 Robert Hooke writes that color may be explained as differences in the rate of vibration of light in the ether.
1675 Observations of the eclipses of Jupiter's moons show that light transmission is not instantaneous.
1700s Newton's particle interpretation of light is disproven. The theory that light is a wave moving through the ether gains ground.
1762 Land tenure reform leads to the Highland Clearances and massive emigration for several decades. The Highland Clearances (Scottish Gaelic: Fuadach nan Gàidheal, the expulsion of the Gael) were forced displacements of the population of the Scottish Highlands during the 18th and 19th centuries. They led to mass emigration to the sea coast, the Scottish Lowlands, and the North American colonies. The clearances were part of a process of agricultural change throughout the United Kingdom (called enclosure elsewhere), but were particularly notorious as a result of the late timing, the lack of legal protection for year-by-year tenants under Scots law, the abruptness of the change from the traditional clan system, and the brutality of many evictions.

Jacques-Étienne MontgolfierJoseph-Michel Montgolfier

June 4, Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier launched an unmanned hot-air balloon, the first public demonstration of the discovery that hot air in a large lightweight bag rises.

1788 May 28, The Federalist papers—a series of 85 essays on the proposed new U.S. Constitution and on the nature of republican government, written in 1787–88 by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay—were published in book form.
1796 Struck by a milkmaid's observation that she would never develop smallpox as she had once had cowpox, Jenner inoculates a healthy 8-year-old boy with material from a cowpox sore on the hand of the milkmaid. When exposed to smallpox, the boy fails to develop the disease. Jenner begins a series of experiments in transferring cowpox (vaccinia virus) arm to arm. Each vaccinated individual is later proven resistant to smallpox.

The first self-propelling steam engine or steam locomotive made its outing on 13 February 1804 at the Pen-y-Darren ironworks. The machine was designed by Richard Trevithick. The engine was able to pull a load of 15 tons at a speed of about 5 mph. However, adhesion was a problem (iron wheels on iron rails = slipping). This was partially solved by Blenkinsop who in 1811 designed an engine for the Middleton Colliery, using cogged wheels engaging in racks on the railway.
Puffing Billy Front ViewPuffing Billy Side ViewSide and front views of Puffing Billy. Deutches Museum, Munich. Photo by G. P. Landow, June 2000.
The problem of adhesion was finally solved by William Hedley with a design which applied power to the rails through two sets of Driving wheels. The locomotive was called Puffing Billy and operated at the Wylam Colliery near Newcastle. George Stephenson, who lived near this colliery designed his first locomotive -- Blucher in 1814 again, for a colliery.

May, explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark begin the first U.S. overland expedition to the Pacific coast.

May 28, Napoleon proclaimed the establishment of the French Empire.

1806 March 23, Lewis and Clark's return trip begun. Having completed the first U.S. overland expedition to the Pacific coast, explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark this day in 1806 began their return to St. Louis, Missouri, where their journey had begun in May 1804.
1807 The Abolition of the Slave Trade Act was passed by the British Parliament on March 25, 1807. The act imposed a fine of £100 for every slave found aboard a British ship. The intention was to entirely outlaw the slave trade within the British Empire, but the trade continued and captains in danger of being caught by the Royal Navy would often throw slaves into the sea to reduce the fine. After the 1807 act, slaves were still held, though not sold, within the British Empire. In the 1820s, the abolitionist movement again became active, this time campaigning against the institution of slavery itself.
Slaveship Poster

This French poster (click on picture for larger version) depicting the horrific conditions on slave ships was influential in mobilizing public opinion against slavery.

March 29, German astronomer Wilhelm Olbers discovered the minor planet Vesta, the brightest asteroid in the sky.

1810 May 25, having severed ties with Spain and the viceregal government, the municipal council of Buenos Aires, Argentina, established an autonomous government.
The Commissioners' Plan of 1811

The Commissioners' Plan of 1811 was a proposal by the New York State Legislature adopted in 1811 for the orderly development and sale of the land of Manhattan between 14th Street and Washington Heights.

June 18, TheWar of 1812 beguns. U.S. President James Madison signed a declaration of war against Great Britain, initiating the War of 1812, which arose chiefly from U.S. grievances over oppressive maritime practices during the Napoleonic Wars.

June 24, French Emperor Napoleon—who had massed his troops in Poland in the spring to intimidate Russian Tsar Alexander I—and 600,000 troops of his Grand Army launched an ill-fated invasion of Russia.


March 27, at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend (Tohopeka, Alabama) in the Creek War, Andrew Jackson and his 3,000 troops defeated the Creek Indians, slaughtering more than 800 warriors and imprisoning 500 women and children.

Napoleon in His Study, by Jacques-Louis David, 1812; in the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

April 11, on this day, during the French revolutionary and Napoleonic wars, Napoleon was facing an invasion of France by forces bent on his overthrow and, pressed by his own officers, abdicated unconditionally at Fontainebleau.


Louis XVIII Crowned King of France Louis XVIII was crowned king of France on the abdication of Napoleon I in 1814 and returned to France in 1814 after years of exile in Europe. When Napoleon seized power in 1815, Louis returned to exile in Belgium. He was restored to the throne following Napoleon’s exile to Elba, and reigned until 1824.

May 30, the first of the Treaties of Paris was signed, ending the Napoleonic Wars.

September 1814 - June 1815 The Congress of Vienna which convened at the Austrian capital from September 1814 to June 1815, was a major event in the history of international relations. It was a high-powered conference that took place after the downfall of Napoleon I. Its ambition was to reorganize Europe after the disruptions created by the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. Among the notable participants were Metternich (seventh from the left, standing) and Talleyrand (sitting, on his right, his arm resting on the table). It succeeded in re-establishing the balance of power in Europe, politically and territorially, for almost half a century. Its territorial decisions affected almost all European countries: France, the German and Italian states, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Russia, and Scandinavia.

Congress of Vienna

March 20, The Hundred Days—during which Napoleon, having ended his exile by escaping the island of Elba, would try to recapture his empire in France—began with Napoleon's arrival in Paris.

April 11, The eruption of Mount Tambora, a volcano on the island of Sumbawa, Indonesia, killed about 10,000 people.

June 18, Napoleon was defeated in the Battle of Waterloo, ending 23 years of recurrent warfare between France and the other powers of Europe.

November 20, 1815 The Treaty of Paris was signed following the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo and his exile to Elba. Its terms were more severe than those of the 1814 agreement: France was forced to accept the boundaries of 1790, pay a war indemnity, and finance an allied occupation force.

Sir Humphry Davy
Humphry Davy Invents the Miner's Safety Lamp. Sir Humphry Davy, a British chemist, is best known for his invention of the miner’s safety lamp in 1815. Davy also conducted fundamental research in the field of electrochemistry and constructed a large battery with which to pass electric current through solutions of compounds to investigate their composition. He used this method to isolate sodium, potassium, and calcium and went on to discover boron and demonstrate that diamonds are composed of carbon.
1817 Cholera broke out in Calcutta in 1817 with grand - scale results. India's traditional, great Kumbh festival at Hardwar in the Upper Ganges triggered the outbreak. The festival lasts three months, drawing pilgrims from all over the country. Those from the Lower Bengal brought the disease with them as they shared the polluted water of the Ganges and the open, crowded camps on its banks. Cholera was a rare disease, as far as we know, confined to the Ganges delta in India before the 1800s, when it became the world's first truly global disease in a series of epidemics.
When the festival was over, they carried cholera back to their homes in other parts of India. There is no reliable evidence of how many Indians perished during that epidemic, but the British army counted 10,000 fatalities among its imperial troops. Based on those numbers, it's almost certain that at least hundreds of thousands of natives must have fallen victim across that vast land.
When the festival ended, cholera raged along the trade routes to Iran, Baku and Astrakhan and up the Volga into Russia, where merchants gathered for the great autumn fair in Nijni-Novgorod. When the merchants went back to their homes in inner Russia and eastern Europe, the disease went along with them. Cholera sailed from port to port, the bacteria making headway in contaminated kegs of water or in the excrement of infected victims, and transmitted by travelers. The exceptioinally cold winter of 1823-24 is credited for preventing the spread of the disease to western Europe. For the moment, the western world had been spared, but by 1827 cholera had become the most feared disease of the century.
1819 29th January, British East India Company administrator Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles founded modern Singapore and first mooted the idea which led to the establishment of the Raffles Museum on the island.
Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles

Thomas Stamford Raffles was born at sea on board a ship Ann on the 6th of July, 1781 off the coast of Jamaica. In 1795, the young man accepted his first job in the East India Company as a clerk. But he studied hard in his spare time and in 1804, was posted to Penang (then Prince of Wales Island) and promoted to Assistant Secretary to the Presidency of that Malaysian island. His mastery over the Malay language made him indispensable to the British Government, and he was later appointed Malay translator to the Government of India. In 1811, he returned as the Lieutenant Governor of Java, and was soon promoted to Governor of Bencoolen (now Sumatra). Stamford Raffles was deeply fascinated by the immense diversity of strange animals and plants of the East Indies during his tenure there. He soon employed zoologists and botanists to discover all they can about the animals and plants of the region and would pay his assistants out of his own pockets to collect specimens. He also revived and became the president of the Batavian Society which was actively engaged in the study of natural history of Java and adjacent areas.
May 24 The future Queen Victoria born. Victoria was the daughter of Edward, the Duke of Kent and Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg. She was born in Kensington Palace in London on May 24th, 1819.
Oersted Discovers Magnetic Effect of Electric Current. Hans Christian Oersted, a Danish physicist and chemist, is best known for his fundamental research in electromagnetism. In 1819 he observed the deflection of a magnetic needle at right angles to a wire carrying an electric current revealing the connection between magnetism and electricity. This discovery laid the foundations for the study of electromagnetism. In 1844 he summarized the results of his research work in the book, Manual of Mechanical Physics.
Prince Albert
Albert (Prince Consort) (1819-1861), second son of Ernest, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, and husband of Victoria was born at Rosenau, near the town of Coburg. When Albert married Victoria, his first cousin, in 1839—they were both 20—he moved from Europe’s princely periphery, a small German duchy, to what was to become during the 19th century the heart of Europe’s royal network, the Court of London. It was not until 1857, however, that the Privy Council gave him the title of Prince Consort.
Albert, who was educated privately and read law for a year at the University of Bonn before visiting Italy, remained intensely interested in German politics, particularly the politics of constitutionalism and of unification. After his marriage, which from the start was a marriage of love, however, his main commitments and obligations were in Britain. His role was an important, sometimes controversial one. One of his critics complained in 1854 that it was “too much that one man, and he not an Englishman by birth, should be at once Foreign Secretary, Commander-in-Chief, and Prime Minister under all administrations”. Of course, Albert held none of these titles, and the complaint was grossly exaggerated. He was a hard worker and was to die young in December 1861, from typhoid. The Queen, in an “agony of grief”, was “inconsolable”: she did not know what she would do without him. His life and work was commemorated in central London in the Albert Memorial and the Royal Albert Hall, both characteristic monuments of their age, an age of which he was not only an accomplished and distinguished representative; but a guide through what he called “a period of the most wonderful transition”.

August 16th, "Peterloo Massacre". A mass meeting was arranged by the Manchester radicals to hear Richard Carlile and Henry 'Orator' Hunt, a speaker who advocated annual parliaments, universal suffrage, and the ballot. It was a glorious summer's day, and contingents from all those satellite towns poured into Manchester gathering in St. Peter's Fields, Trouble arose between the crowd and the Lancashire militia who were present on the plea of preserving order. The troops charged and killed several persons, to the intense indignation of radical sympathizers in every part of Great Britain.
The incident quickly became known as the Peterloo Massacre - an allusion to the Battle of Waterloo four years earlier. Even some of the mill masters were horrified. Rochdale millowner Thomas Chadwick, who was at the scene, described the massacre as: "An inhuman outrage committed on an unarmed, peaceful assembly."
To add insult to injury, Hunt, Sam Bamford (who had led the Middleton contingent but had taken no part in the speeches), and several others were arrested. Hunt, Bamford and two others were convicted of "being persons of a wicked and turbulent disposition" they had "conspired together to create a disturbance of the peace a formidable and menacing manner, with sticks, clubs and other offensive weapons." Hunt got two and a half years' gaol, the others a year each.
Yeamanry Charge At Peterloo

Manchester Yeomanry charge at Peterloo SABRES aloft, Manchester Yeomanry charge into the crowd at Peterloo
William Parry explores the Northwest Passage
South Shetland Islands discovered by British explorer William Smith

April 1-8, The Radical War, also known as the Scottish Insurrection of 1820, was a week of strikes and unrest, a culmination of Radical demands for reform in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland which had become prominent in the early years of the French Revolution, but had then been repressed during the long Napoleonic Wars.

An economic downturn after the wars ended brought increasing unrest. Artisan workers, particularly weavers in Scotland, sought action to reform an uncaring government, gentry fearing revolutionary horrors recruited militia and the government deployed an apparatus of spies, informers and agents provocateurs to stamp out the movement.

A Committee of Organisation for Forming a Provisional Government put placards around the streets of Glasgow late on Saturday 1 April, calling for an immediate national strike. On Monday 3 April work stopped in a wide area of central Scotland and in a swirl of disorderly events a small group marched towards the Carron Company ironworks to seize weapons, but while stopped at Bonnymuir they were attacked by Hussars. Another small group from Strathaven marched to meet a rumoured larger force, but were warned of an ambush and dispersed. Militia taking prisoners to Greenock jail were attacked by local people and the prisoners released. James Wilson of Strathaven was singled out as a leader of the march there, and at Glasgow was executed by hanging, then decapitated. Of those seized by the British army at Bonnymuir, John Baird and Andrew Hardie were similarly executed at Stirling after making short defiant speeches. Twenty other Radicals were sentenced to penal transportation.

It became evident that government agents had actively fomented the unrest to bring radicals into the open. The insurrection was largely forgotten as attention focussed on better publicised Radical events in England. Two years later, enthusiasm for the visit of King George IV to Scotland successfully boosted loyalist sentiment, ushering in a new-found Scottish national identity.

Difference Engine

Charles Babbage begins work on his Difference Engine British mathematician and inventor Charles Babbage is famed for his pioneering development of calculating machines. In the 1820s he began work on the Difference Engine, a mechanical device capable of carrying out simple mathematical operations. The Difference Engine was designed to produce logarithm tables that could be printed out with great clarity. In the 1830s he designed the Analytical Engine for more complicated calculations.
1821 June 24, South American patriots under Simón Bolívar defeated Spanish royalists on the plains near Caracas, Venezuela, in the Battle of Carabobo.

May 24, part of the Latin American wars of independence from Spanish rule, the Battle of Pichincha took place on the lower slopes of Cerro Pichincha and ended in victory for South American rebels.

Charles Babbage (1792-1871) designed his first mechanical computer, the first prototype for the difference engine. Babbage invented 2 machines the Analytical Engine (a general purpose mathematical device, see 1834) and the Difference Engine (a re-invention of Mueller's 1786 machine for solving polynomials), both machines were too complicated to be built (although attempt was made in 1832) - but the theories worked. The analytical engine (outlined in 1833) involved many processes similar to the early electronic computers - notably the use of punched cards for input.

Georges Cuvier established new standards and methods in stratigraphy and palaeontology
Phillips and Conybeare identify the Carboniferous Period
d'Halloy identifies the Cretaceous Period (creta, chalk). He also proposed the Jurassic System
Liberia established as a country for freed slaves.
Friedrich Mohs introduces his system of classifying minerals and his scale of mineral hardness.
Mary Ann Mantell discovers the first fossil to be recognised as a dinosaur, named iguanodon by her husband Gideon Algernon Mantell
Rene-Just Hauy published Treaty of crystallography, and is regarded as the father of crystallography thanks to his law of rational truncations and with the rigorous writing of the rules of symmetry, which allow the distinction between the 7 crystal systems including some secondary outer shapes

1823 The first public railway was the Stockton and Darlington Railway, which opened in 1823 with Stephenson designed locos, the first of which was called Locomotion.
Mammoth and human bones unearthed together on the Gower Peninsula, Wales, indicating that the two species co-existed.
The Anti-Slavery Society was founded in 1823. Many of the campaigners were those who had previously campaigned against the slave trade.
December 2, The Monroe Doctrine was expressed during President Monroe's seventh annual message to Congress. While the U.S.A. was not yet a world power, the European powers, according to Monroe, were obligated to respect the Western Hemisphere as the United States' sphere of interest.
Transcript of Monroe Doctrine (1823)
At the proposal of the Russian Imperial Government, made through the minister of the Emperor residing here, a full power and instructions have been transmitted to the minister of the United States at St. Petersburg to arrange by amicable negotiation the respective rights and interests of the two nations on the northwest coast of this continent. A similar proposal has been made by His Imperial Majesty to the Government of Great Britain, which has likewise been acceded to. The Government of the United States has been desirous by this friendly proceeding of manifesting the great value which they have invariably attached to the friendship of the Emperor and their solicitude to cultivate the best understanding with his Government. In the discussions to which this interest has given rise and in the arrangements by which they may terminate the occasion has been judged proper for asserting, as a principle in which the rights and interests of the United States are involved, that the American continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers. . .
It was stated at the commencement of the last session that a great effort was then making in Spain and Portugal to improve the condition of the people of those countries, and that it appeared to be conducted with extraordinary moderation. It need scarcely be remarked that the results have been so far very different from what was then anticipated. Of events in that quarter of the globe, with which we have so much intercourse and from which we derive our origin, we have always been anxious and interested spectators. The citizens of the United States cherish sentiments the most friendly in favor of the liberty and happiness of their fellow-men on that side of the Atlantic. In the wars of the European powers in matters relating to themselves we have never taken any part, nor does it comport with our policy to do so. It is only when our rights are invaded or seriously menaced that we resent injuries or make preparation for our defense. With the movements in this hemisphere we are of necessity more immediately connected, and by causes which must be obvious to all enlightened and impartial observers. The political system of the allied powers is essentially different in this respect from that of America. This difference proceeds from that which exists in their respective Governments; and to the defense of our own, which has been achieved by the loss of so much blood and treasure, and matured by the wisdom of their most enlightened citizens, and under which we have enjoyed unexampled felicity, this whole nation is devoted. We owe it, therefore, to candor and to the amicable relations existing between the United States and those powers to declare that we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and safety. With the existing colonies or dependencies of any European power we have not interfered and shall not interfere. But with the Governments who have declared their independence and maintain it, and whose independence we have, on great consideration and on just principles, acknowledged, we could not view any interposition for the purpose of oppressing them, or controlling in any other manner their destiny, by any European power in any other light than as the manifestation of an unfriendly disposition toward the United States. In the war between those new Governments and Spain we declared our neutrality at the time of their recognition, and to this we have adhered, and shall continue to adhere, provided no change shall occur which, in the judgement of the competent authorities of this Government, shall make a corresponding change on the part of the United States indispensable to their security.
The late events in Spain and Portugal show that Europe is still unsettled. Of this important fact no stronger proof can be adduced than that the allied powers should have thought it proper, on any principle satisfactory to themselves, to have interposed by force in the internal concerns of Spain. To what extent such interposition may be carried, on the same principle, is a question in which all independent powers whose governments differ from theirs are interested, even those most remote, and surely none of them more so than the United States. Our policy in regard to Europe, which was adopted at an early stage of the wars which have so long agitated that quarter of the globe, nevertheless remains the same, which is, not to interfere in the internal concerns of any of its powers; to consider the government de facto as the legitimate government for us; to cultivate friendly relations with it, and to preserve those relations by a frank, firm, and manly policy, meeting in all instances the just claims of every power, submitting to injuries from none. But in regard to those continents circumstances are eminently and conspicuously different.
It is impossible that the allied powers should extend their political system to any portion of either continent without endangering our peace and happiness; nor can anyone believe that our southern brethren, if left to themselves, would adopt it of their own accord. It is equally impossible, therefore, that we should behold such interposition in any form with indifference. If we look to the comparative strength and resources of Spain and those new Governments, and their distance from each other, it must be obvious that she can never subdue them. It is still the true policy of the United States to leave the parties to themselves, in hope that other powers will pursue the same course. . . .

Transcription courtesy of the Avalon Project at Yale Law School.
1825 Georges Cuvier announces his catastrophe theory.
September 27, Stockton-Darlington Railway Opened. English engineer George Stephenson is best known as the pioneer of the steam locomotive. On September 27, 1825, the Locomotion, a steam locomotive designed by Stephenson, pulled the first train on the Stockton to Darlington Railway. In 1830, the Liverpool to Manchester Railway was opened, for which he had designed his famous Rocket steam locomotive. Stephenson had thus demonstrated the potential for railway transport. The railways became very popular with passengers. Stephenson was involved in the development of the London to Birmingham, Manchester to Leeds, and other railways.
World population reached 1 billion.
Completion of the Erie Canal, a 360 mile waterway linking Lake Erie to the Atlantic coast and dramatically reducing the cost of bringing goods to the New York area.
Miramichi Fire in New Brunswick burned three million acres and left 160 people dead.
1826 Pierre Dupin produces a cartogram of France, the first chloropleth map (also dated to 1819).
The Zoological Society of London (sometimes known by the abbreviation ZSL) is a learned society founded in April 1826 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, Lord Auckland, Sir Humphry Davy, Joseph Sabine, Nicholas Aylward Vigors and other eminent naturalists. Raffles was also the first President, but died shortly after assuming this office in July 1826. He was succeeded by the Marquess of Lansdowne, who obtained a parcel of land in Regent's Park from the Crown at a nominal rent, and who supervised the building of the first animal houses. It received a Royal Charter from George IV on 27 March 1829.
July 5, Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles passed away a day before his 45th birthday in 1826. A few years earlier, in 1821 and 1822, he contributed two papers in the Transactions of the Zoological Society, London, with descriptions of some 34 species of birds and 13 species of mammals, chiefly from Sumatra. Most of the new species he named are valid today, and these animals will continue to remind us of the contributions he has made. Animals named by Raffles himself include:

March 26, Ludwig van Beethoven died of cirrhosis of the liver in Vienna.

October 20 The Battle of Navarino which is a decisive naval engagement during the Greek War of Independence. The combined fleets of Britain, France, and Russia sailed into Navarino Bay in the south-west of modern-day Greece to stop the Ottoman fleet under Ibrahim Pasha. The Turko-Egyptian fleet was annihilated, which led to the Turkish evacuation of Greece.
Jean-Baptiste Fourier proposed the existence of an atmospheric effect which keeps the Earth warmer than expected (ozone layer).
Niepce takes first picture of nature from a window view of the French countryside using a camera obscura.
In 1827, Britain declared that participation in the slave trade was piracy and punishable by death.


Paul Erman measures the magnetic field of the Earth; his measurements become the basis for Gauss's theory of Earth's magnetic field.

December 24, Trial of the Edinburgh body-snatchers (Resurrection Men) Burke and Hare. The trial opened on the morning of Christmas Eve 1828 and the following morning it took the jury just 50 minutes to find Burke guilty. He was sentenced to hang. Before the execution was carried out, on January 29 1829, he made a full confession of all the 16 crimes but denied that the pair ever robbed a grave.


January 28, William Burke was hanged.

Stephenson's Rocket

The Rocket's claim to fame was that it competed in and won a competition now known as the Rainhill Trials. This was 1829. The directors of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway invited designers to submit their locomotives to a test for a 500 pounds prize. Besides the Rocket, two other machines competed - Sanspareil and Novelty. Rocket won for its all round competence.
French tailor Barthélemy Thimonnier developed the first practical sewing machine. Thimonnier’s machine utilized a needle with a hooked-tip that moved up and down by means of a foot treadle and a return spring. The machine produced a chain stitch. Thimonnier did not benefit from his invention: when he tried to install 80 machines into a clothing factory in Paris, they were sabotaged by tailors worried that they would lose their livelihood.

April 6, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was formed by American prophet Joseph Smith at Fayette, New York.

May 24, the first line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad opened with the maiden trip of Peter Cooper's locomotive Tom Thumb.

May 28, the Indian Removal Act was passed, allowing U.S. President Andrew Jackson to grant American Indian tribes unsettled western prairie land in exchange for their settlements within the borders of extant U.S. states, thereby clearing the way for further white settlement.

Foundation of the Royal Geographical Society.
Charles Lyell published "The principles of geology". He suggests a subdivision of the Tertiary, (Pliocene, Miocene, Eocene) Period based on the relative number of fossils similar to living forms. His subdivision is still largely accepted. His studies show that the Earth must be several million years old.
Colonel Sir George Everest becomes the Surveyor General of India

Michael Faraday
Faraday Discovers Electromagnetic Induction. British physicist and chemist Michael Faraday is renowned for his discovery of electromagnetic induction and for his formulation of the laws of electrolysis. In 1831 he discovered the phenomenon of magnetic induction, and went on to demonstrate the induction of one electric current by another. In his research into electrolysis, he coined the terms “anode”, “cathode”, “anion”, and “cation”, and formulated two fundamental laws. He demonstrated the existence of diamagnetism, and the effect of a magnetic field on polarized light.
Charles Darwin begins his historic Beagle voyages.
James Ross explores the Northwest Passage in both directions.

Omani Busaidi Dynasty relocates its head of government to the island of Zanzibar.

Charles Babbage and Joseph Clement produce a prototype segment of his difference engine, which operates on 6-digit numbers and 2nd-order differences (i.e. can tabulate quadratic polynomials). The complete engine, which would be room-sized, is planned to be able to operate both on 6th-order differences with numbers of about 20 digits, and on 3rd-order differences with numbers of 30 digits. Each addition would be done in two phases, the second one taking care of any carries generated in the first. The output digits would be punched into a soft metal plate, from which a plate for a printing press could be made. But there are various difficulties, and no more than this prototype piece is ever assembled.

1833 August 23, Parliament passed the Slavery Abolition Act. This act gave all slaves in the British Empire their freedom. The British government paid compensation to the slave owners. The amount that the plantation owners received depended on the number of slaves that they had. For example, the Bishop of Exeter's 665 slaves resulted in him receiving £12,700.

August 1, all slaves in the British Empire were emancipated, but still indentured to their former owners in an apprenticeship system which was finally abolished in 1838.

George Scheutz, of Stockholm, produces a small difference engine in wood, after reading a brief description of Babbage's project.

Babbage conceives, and begins to design, his "Analytical Engine". The program was stored on read-only memory, specifically in the form of punch cards. Babbage continues to work on the design for years, though after about 1840 the changes are minor. The machine would operate on 40-digit numbers; the "mill" (CPU) would have 2 main accumulators and some auxiliary ones for specific purposes, while the "store" (memory) would hold perhaps 100 more numbers. There would be several punch card readers, for both programs and data; the cards would be chained and the motion of each chain could be reversed. The machine would be able to perform conditional jumps. There would also be a form of microcoding: the meaning of instructions would depend on the positioning of metal studs in a slotted barrel, called the "control barrel". The machine would do an addition in 3 seconds and a multiplication or division in 2-4 minutes.

1835 November 7, The first Texas provisional government was formed at San Felipe de Austin. This council passed a declaration of support for the 1824 Mexican constitution, and appointed a governor and other officials. This council stopped short of declaring Texas independence.
December 20, The first declaration of independence for modern Texas, by both Anglo-Texian settlers and local Tejanos, was signed in Goliad .
1836 March 2, The Convention of 1836 was convened at Washington-on-the-Brazos with Richard Ellis presiding, and the Texas Declaration of Independence was enacted effectively creating the independent, white-ruled Republic of Texas.
Ten years of independence brought the Texas republic epidemics, financial crises and continued clashes with Mexico. But enduring Texas imagery was born in this period: the American cowboy; Texas Rangers with their Colt six-shooters; the rugged individualism of Sam Houston. On December 29, 1845, Texas joined the United States.
March 6, The thirteen day Siege of the Alamo ended as Mexican General Antonio López de Santa Anna's forces defeated the 183 Texans defending the small mission (which would eventually become the center of the city of San Antonio). Remember the Alamo! became the battle cry of the Texas Revolution.
April 21, Sam Houston defeated the Mexican Army at the Battle of San Jacinto, near the present-day city of Houston. General Santa Anna's entire force of 1,600 men were killed or captured by Texas General Sam Houston's army of 800 Texans; only nine Texans died.

General Sam Houston, President of the Republic of Texas

May 1836, Texas claimed the Rio Grande as its southern and western limit, according to the Treaties of Velasco. Mexico rejected the treaty as invalid and refused to recognize the existence of the Republic of Texas, although it was recognized by every other major power. Mexico insisted that Texas remained its province. Texas tried to gain recognition from Mexico as an independent state, putting the Nueces as the territorial limit in the negotiation table, to no avail. The British tried to mediate but the Mexican government refused to accept mediation.

Map of the Republic of Texas

The Republic of Texas
The map includes the following headings:
A Map of TEXAS
John Arrowsmith

The master criminal and genius, Professor James Moriarty is born. He was the son of Dr. James Noel, and Morcar Moriarty.


February 10, Russian author Aleksandr Pushkin was killed in a duel defending his wife's honour.

Coronation of Queen Victoria
June 20 1837 Queen Victoria ascended to the throne after the death of her uncle William IV. Due to her secluded childhood, she displayed a personality marked by strong prejudices and a willful stubbornness. Barely eighteen, she refused any further influence from her domineering mother and ruled in her own stead. When Victoria ascended the throne the monarchy had fallen into disrepute and Popular respect for the Crown was at a low point at her coronation. Victoria was just over 18 years old when she became Queen of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, an unknown figure but with the help of her chief adviser, Lord Melbourne, and of her husband, Albert, Prince of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, whom she married in 1840, Victoria set out to restore the monarchy's respectability. The modest and straightforward young Queen won the hearts of her subjects. She wished to be informed of political matters, although she had no direct input in policy decisions. The Reform Act of 1832 had set the standard of legislative authority residing in the House of Lords, with executive authority resting within a cabinet formed of members of the House of Commons; the monarch was essentially removed from the loop. She respected and worked well with Lord Melbourne (Prime Minister in the early years of her reign) and England grew both socially and economically.
Omani Muzrui Dynasty wrestles control of Mombasa from the Busaidi.


April 8, The Great Western, the earliest regular transatlantic steamer, embarked on its maiden voyage from Bristol, England, to New York City.

Regular steamship service begins across the Atlantic Ocean.

1839 Former slave-owning sugar planters riot in Jamaica, forcing a showdown between Prime Minister Robert Peel and Queen Victoria. The Queen triumphs and order is soon restored.

February 6, Maori tribes of New Zealand signed the Treaty of Waitangi with Great Britain, a historic agreement purported to protect Maori rights that was the immediate basis of the British annexation of New Zealand.

February 10, only three years after taking the throne, Victoria took her first vow and married her cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. Their relationship was one of great love and admiration. Together they bore nine children - four sons and five daughters: Victoria, Bertie, Alice, Alfred, Helena, Louise, Arthur, Leopold, and Beatrice. Prince Albert replaced Melbourne as the dominant male influence in Victoria's life. She was thoroughly devoted to him, and completely submitted to his will. Victoria did nothing without her husband's approval. Albert assisted in her royal duties. He introduced a strict decorum in court and made a point of straitlaced behavior. Albert also gave a more conservative tinge to Victoria’s politics. If Victoria was to insistently interject her opinions and make her views felt in the cabinet, it was only because of Albert’s teachings of hard work.

Birth of Fu Manchu, son of Sir William Clayton and Ling Ju Hai. Destined to become a master criminal, Fu Manchu's murderous plots are marked by the extensive use of arcane methods; he disdains guns or explosives, preferring dacoits, Thuggee, and members of other secret societies as his agents armed with knives, or using "pythons and hamadryads... fungi and my tiny allies, the bacilli... my black spiders" and other peculiar animals or natural chemical weapons. According to some authorities on Chinese customs "Fu Manchu" is a title of honor, which means "the Warlike Manchu." In the early years of his career, Fu Manchu is an assassin sent on missions by the Si-Fan, but he quickly rises to become head of that dreaded secret society. At first, the Si-Fan's goal is to throw the Europeans out of Asia; later, the group attempts to intervene more generally in world politics, while funding itself by more ordinary crime. Dr. Fu Manchu is believed to be working to extend his considerable lifespan by use of the elixir vitae, a formula he has already spent decades trying to perfect.

March 30, The English dandy Beau Brummell died, destitute and mad, in Caen, France.

Penny Black

1 May 1840, The first official adhesive postage stamp is introduced by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland for use from 6 May. It depicts Queen Victoria and is called the "Penny Black". Although all London post offices received official issues of the new stamps, other offices throughout the United Kingdom did not, and continued to accept postage payments in cash only for some time. Post offices in some other localities, such as those in the city of Bath, began offering the stamp unofficially after 2 May.
June, China bans the lucrative British practice of opium trading. The Opium Wars between Britain and China begin.
23 July, in an effort to prevent American expansion into British territory, Canada is granted partial independence from Britain.

14 October, Dr. Gottlieb Wilhelm Leitner (1840–1899) was born. He was the builder of the Shah Jehan Mosque, and founder of the Oriental Institute, at Woking, Surrey, England. As a child he showed an extraordinary ability in languages. At the age of eight he went to Constantinople to learn Arabic and Turkish, and by the age of ten he was fluent in Turkish, Arabic and most European languages. At fifteen, he was appointed Interpreter (First Class) to the British Commissariat in the Crimea, with the rank of colonel. When the Crimean War ended, he wanted to become a priest and went to London to study at King’s College. He returned to Europe in the late 1870s to pursue studies at Heidelberg University (Holland), and he also undertook work for the Austrian, Prussian and British Governments. His ambition now was to found a centre for the study in Europe of Oriental languages, culture and history. On his return to England in 1881, he sought a suitable site for his proposed institution, and in 1883 came upon the vacant Royal Dramatic College in Woking, a building admirably suited for the purpose.


The Opium Wars between Great Britain and China end. China cedes Hong Kong back to the British, who reopen the city's ports for trade.

Babbage's difference engine project is officially cancelled. (The cost overruns have been considerable, and Babbage is spending too much time on redesigning the Analytical Engine.)


Brunel Tunnel
Opening of the Thames Tunnel, constructed by Sir Marc Brunel and his son Isambard in London.
Geologist Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin is one of the first people to realize that there were several ice ages.

The Disruption of 1843 was a schism within the established Church of Scotland, in which 450 ministers of the Church broke away, over the issue of the Church's relationship with the State, to form the Free Church of Scotland, being commonly known as the 'Wee Free'. It came at the end of a bitter conflict within the established Church, and had huge effects not only within the Church, but also upon Scottish civic life. The evangelical element had been demanding the purification of the Church, and attacked the patronage system that allowed rich landowners to select the local ministers. It became a political battle between evangelicals on one side and the "Moderates" and gentry on the other.


24 May, Inventor Samuel Finley Breese Morse (April 27, 1791 – April 2, 1872), an American, painter of portraits and historic scenes, and co-inventor (with Alfred Vail) of the Morse Code, sends his famous first telegraph message, "What hath God wrought" to officially open the first telegraph line which ran along the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad between the US Capitol and Baltimore.

6 June, George Williams originated the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in London.

Johann Ludwig Krapf establishes a mission on the outskirts of Mombasa.

1845 February 28, The U.S. Congress passed a bill that would authorize the United States to annex the Republic of Texas over Mexican and British objections.
Two companies, the East Indian Railway Company operating from Calcutta, and the Great Indian Peninsula Railway (GIPR) operating from Bombay, are formed.
March 1, U.S. President John Tyler signed the bill that would authorize the United States to annex the Republic of Texas. The legislation set the date for annexation for December 29 of the same year.
October 13, a majority of voters in the Republic of Texas approved a proposed constitution that was later accepted by the US Congress, making Texas a U.S. state on the same day annexation took effect (therefore bypassing a territorial phase). One of the primary motivations for annexation was that the Texas government had incurred huge debts which the United States agreed to assume upon annexation.
Republic of Texas Flag

The red, white and blue flag with its lone star adopted by the republic in 1839 became the state flag.

Sam Houston favored the annexation of Texas to the United States, and was elected its first United States Senator in 1846. In that station he remained until 1859, when he was chosen governor of Texas.
The annexation resolution has been the topic of some incorrect historical beliefs—chiefly, that the resolution granted Texas the explicit right to secede from the Union. This was a right argued by some to be implicitly held by all states at the time, up until the conclusion of the Civil War. However, no such right was explicitly enumerated in the resolution. The resolution did include two unique provisions: first, it gave the new state of Texas the right to divide itself into as many as five states with approval of its legislature. Second, Texas did not have to surrender its public lands to the federal government. While Texas did cede all territory outside of its current area to the federal government in 1850, it did not cede any public lands within its current boundaries. This means that generally, the only lands owned by the federal government within Texas have actually been purchased by the government.
Blight strikes the potato crop in Ireland. The Great Famine or the Great Hunger (Irish: An Gorta Mór or An Drochshaol) is the name given to the famine in Ireland between 1845 and 1849. The Famine was partly due to "the (potato) Blight" (also known as phytophthora)– the oomycete that almost instantly destroyed the primary food source for many Irish people. Serious famine develops because, at the time, over six million people in Britain and Ireland subsist almost completely on potatoes. The Potato Famine leads to a massive Irish emigration to Great Britain, the United States, Canada, and Australia.
First Arab slave traders arrive in Uganda.

February 10, The British beat the Sikhs in northwestern India at the Battle of Sobraon, the most decisive engagement of the First Sikh War.

May 13, tensions between Mexico and the United States—stemming from the U.S. annexation of Texas (1845)—led the U.S. Congress on this day in 1846 to approve overwhelmingly a declaration of war against its southern neighbour.

June 14, The Bear Flag Republic was declared in California in an informal rebellion that lasted less than a month. Before the Bear Flag Republic was declared, California was a department of Mexico called Alta California. In the 1840's, American pioneers traveled in large wagon trains from Missouri to Alta California only to be met by this frustrating news.
At dawn on June 14, 1846, thirty-three heavily-armed Americans gathered at the fortified adobe home of General Mariano Vallejo, on the north side of Sonoma's Plaza in California. These rebellious white settlers from the Grigsby-Ide party, some mountain men and explorers, but all displeased with Mexican rule pounded on the adobe door and loudly demanded the General come out and surrender the little fortress to them. Vallejo quickly donned his dress uniform, then opened the door and invited three representatives of the group in for breakfast and wine. The General's military bearing and immaculate uniform must have contrasted starkly with the clothing of his "visitors." Some of the Americans wore buckskins, others wore their work clothes, still others wore only what rags they had picked up or made during their travels. Robert Semple, a member of the group, later noted in his memoirs that the party "was as rough a looking set of men as one could imagine."
Because Vallejo realized that Mexican rule was inadequate to manage an area as large and rich as California, he had been hoping the United States would annex the region. He told the Americans that morning to consider him one of them. The group was wary; they respectfully informed him he was under arrest and sent him to Sutter's Fort for safeguarding. Vallejo would eventually return to Sonoma after the U.S. took control of California. He would go on to serve as a delegate to the California Constitutional Convention, and later as a State Senator.
Having won such a surprising and effortless victory, the Americans, (now twenty-four strong), were at a temporary loss. Some suggested looting the adobe, which was also an arsenal, but William Ide made an impassioned plea for restraint, "Choose ye this day what you will be! We are robbers, or we must be conquerors!"
To legitimize their conquest, the rebels decided to raise a new flag over the plaza. By most accounts, the making of this flag was overseen by William L. Todd, a nephew of Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of the future president. A Californio woman donated a rectangular piece of very light brown muslin. The wife of John Sears, one of the Grigsby-Ide party, tore a four-inch wide strip from a red petticoat and sewed it to the muslin, making a stripe along the bottom reminiscent of the stripes on the American flag. Todd then drew a star in the upper left corner (some say in solidarity with Texas, then also fighting a war with Mexico) and a crude rendition of a grizzly bear next to it, using for both a brownish mixture of brick dust, linseed oil, and Venetian Red paint. The words CALIFORNIA REPUBLIC were written in black in the middle, to the right of the star.
Ten days later, U.S. Army Captain John C. Frémont took control. The republic's first and only president was William B. Ide, whose term lasted twenty-five days.

June 19, Alexander Joy Cartwright arranged a baseball game between the New York Knickerbockers and the New York Nine at Hoboken, New Jersey—the first baseball game to use the set of rules on which today's game is based.

July 7, a frigate and two sloops of the U.S. Navy, commanded by John D. Sloat, routed the detachment of the Mexican Coast Guard garrisoning the port of Monterey, California in a minor skirmish (the Battle of Monterey), and alerted Frémont and his men that the Mexican-American War had begun. The "Bear Flaggers" joined the war effort and replaced their flag with the Stars and Stripes.


January 30, The town of Yerba Beuna officially renamed as San Fransisco.
AN ORDINANCE WHEREAS, the local name of Yerba Buena, as applied to the settlement or town of San Francisco, is unknown beyond the district; and has been applied from the local name of the cove, on which the town is built: Therefore, to prevent confusion and mistakes in public documents, and that the town may have the advantage of the name given on the public map;
IT IS HEREBY ORDAINED, that the name of SAN FRANCISCO shall hereafter be used in all official communications and public documents, or records appertaining to the town. – Washington Bartlett, Chief magistrate January 30, 1847

February 2, The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo signedbetween the United States and Mexico ending the Mexican War. It was signed at Villa de Guadalupe Hidalgo, which is a northern neighbourhood of Mexico City. The treaty drew the boundary between the United States and Mexico at the Rio Grande and the Gila River; for a payment of $15,000,000 the United States received more than 525,000 square miles (1,360,000 square km) of land (now Arizona, California, western Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Utah) from Mexico and in return agreed to settle the more than $3,000,000 in claims made by U.S. citizens against Mexico. With this annexation, the continental expansion of the United States was completed except for the land added in the Gadsden Purchase (1853).

The treaty helped precipitate civil war in both Mexico and the United States. In Mexico it left many citizens unsure of their country's future as an independent state; political extremism followed, and civil war broke out at the end of 1857. The expansion of slavery in the United States had been settled by the Missouri Compromise (1820), but addition of the vast Mexican tract as new U.S. territory reopened the question. Attempts to settle it led to the uneasy Compromise of 1850 and the Kansas–Nebraska Act (1854).

February 11 Thomas Alva Edison, inventor of the ether propellor, phonograph, the incandescent light bulb, and many other devices that make our lives fuller and simpler, was born in Milan, Ohio.

June 10, The Chicago Tribune, one of the leading daily American newspapers and long the dominant, sometimes strident, voice of the Midwest, began publication.

Babbage designs an improved, simpler difference engine, a project which took 2 years. The machine could operate on 7th-order differences and 31-digit numbers, this device would become the first product of Babbage's newly formed Imperial Business Machines (IBM) company.

Chloroform, also known as trichloromethane and methyl trichloride, is a chemical compound with formula CHCl3. is used for the first time by the Edinburgh obstetrician James Young Simpson to provide general anesthesia during childbirth. The use of chloroform during surgery expanded rapidly thereafter in Europe.

The United Presbyterian Church of Scotland is established.


January, Gold discovered in California. "It was in the first part of January, 1848, when the gold was discovered at Coloma, where I was then building a saw-mill. -- The Discovery of Gold in California" - by Gen. John A. Sutter
Kelvin temperature scale established.
'Science' magazine first published.

May 29, Wisconsin became the 30th state of the Union.

Queen's College for Women is founded in London.
First attempt to survey "Peak b" (now known as Everest) records a height of 30,200 feet.
General public admitted to zoological gardens in Regents Park for the first time.
Johann Rebmann, in the employment of the Church Missionary Society, sights the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. Johann Ludwig Krapf, a collegue of Rebmann's, becomes the first European to sight Mount Kenya.


24 Jan, Carpenter James Wilson Marshall found nuggets of gold in California's American River near the site of a sawmill he was building for John Sutter, ushering in the California gold rush.

23 March, At the Battle of Novara, during the first Italian War of Independence, outnumbered Austrian troops under Field Marshal Joseph Radetzky destroyed the poorly trained Italian troops of Charles Albert, king of Sardinia-Piedmont.

The first of the great fires that visited San Francisco occurred at 6 o’clock on the morning of December 24, 1849, when it was estimated that $1,000,000 worth of property was destroyed.

San Francisco Street Map 1849

Discovery of the continental slope and the continental shelf break.
Start of major drought in Arizona; it lasts until 1905.
Harrod's department store is founded in London's Knightsbridge.
The world's first women's rights conventionis held in New York.
The first machine gun is introduced.
Gold is discovered in California and Australia.

April 4, With a population totaling about 1,600, Los Angeles was incorporated as an American city.

A telegraph cable is laid along the seabed of the English Channel.

1851 May 1, The Great Exhibition of 1851 opened in Hyde Park, London in the Crystal Palace, a cast-iron and plate-glass building, which was designed by Sir Joseph Paxton.
Crystal Palace
In 1851 Great Britain was arguably the leader of the industrial revolution, with a population of 21 million, and feeling very secure in that ideal. The Great Exhibition of 1851 in London was conceived to symbolize this industrial, military and economic superiority of Great Britain. Just representing the feats of Britain itself would have excluded many of the technological achievements pioneered by the British in its many colonies and protectorates, so it was decided to make the exhibit truly international with invitations being extended to almost all of the colonized world. The British also felt that it was important to show their achievements right alongside those of "less civilized" countries. The prevailing attitude in England at the time was ripe for the somewhat arrogant parading of accomplishments. Many felt secure, economically and politically, and Queen Victoria was eager to reinforce the feeling of contentment with her reign. It was during the mid-1850s that the word "Victorian" began to be employed to express a new self-consciousness, both in relation to the nation and to the period through which it was passing.

The exhibition was also a triumph for Victoria's German husband, Albert, whom she had married in 1840. Despite outbursts of opposition to Albert by the press the family life of the Victorian court began to be considered increasingly as a model for the whole country. Albert had appreciated the achievements of Prime Minister Robert Peel's political and military advances and publicly advocated the advancement of industry and science. These facts began to sway opinion in his favor as respectable foundations of family life and industrial supremacy were becoming rapidly acquainted with the monarchy of Victoria and Albert. Conceived by prince Albert, the Great Exhibition was held in Hyde Park in London in the specially constructed Crystal Palace.

The Crystal Palace was originally designed by Sir Joseph Paxton in only 10 days and was a huge iron goliath with over a million feet of glass. It was important that the building used to showcase these achievements be grandiose and innovative.

Over 13,000 exhibits were displayed and viewed by over 6,200,000 visitors to the exhibition. The millions of visitors that journeyed to the Great Exhibition of 1851 marveled at the industrial revolution that was propelling Britain into the greatest power of the time. Among the 13,000 exhibits from all around the world were the Jacquard loom, an envelope machine, tools, kitchen appliances, steel-making displays and a reaping machine from the United States. The objects on display came from all parts of the world, including India and the countries with recent white settlements, such as Australia and New Zealand, that constituted the new empire. Many of the visitors who flocked to London came from European cities. The profits from the event allowed for the foundation of public works such as the Albert Hall, the Science Museum, the National History Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

This "bigger and better" building was divided into a series of courts depicting the history of art and architecture from ancient Egypt through the Renaissance, as well as exhibits from industry and the natural world. Major concerts were held in the Palace's huge arched Centre Transept, which also contained the world's largest organ. The Centre Transept also housed a circus and was the scene of daring feats by world famous acts such as the tightrope walker Blondin. National exhibitions were also staged within its glass and iron walls, including the world's first aeronautical exhibition (held in 1868) and the first national motor show, plus cat shows, dog shows, pigeon shows, honey, flower and other shows.

The Crystal Palace itself was almost outshone by the park in which it stood, which contained a magnificent series of fountains, comprising almost 12,000 individual jets. The largest of these threw water to a height of 250ft. Some 120,000 gallons of water flowed through the system when it was in full play. The park also contained unrivaled collections of statues, many of which were copies of great works from around the world, and a geological display which included a replica lead mine and the first attempts anywhere in the world to portray life-size restorations of extinct animals, including dinosaurs. Crystal Palace park was also the scene of spectacular Brock's fireworks displays.

After the Great Exhibition closed, the Crystal Palace was moved to Sydenham Hill in South London and reconstructed in what was, in effect, a 200 acre Victorian theme park. The new Crystal Palace park at Sydenham was opened by Queen Victoria on June 10th, 1854.
Ginger ale created in Ireland.
22 December, The first train in India becomes operational. It is used for the hauling of construction material in Roorkee.

March 20, American author Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin was published in book form.

Anton Gaudí was born in Catalonia, Spain, in 1852 though no one knows exactly where. While many believe his birthplace to be the town of Reus, others claim it was in fact Riudoms. It is known, however, that he was baptized in Reus a day after his birth. The artist's parents, Francesc Gaudí Serra and Antonia Cornet Bertran, both came from families of metalsmiths.
Anton Gaudi
One of the primary motivations for the US annexation of the Republic of texas was that the Texas government had incurred huge debts which the United States agreed to assume upon annexation. In 1852, in return for this assumption of debt, a large portion of Texas-claimed territory, now parts of Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Wyoming, was ceded to the Federal government.


April 7, Queen Victoria's son, Leopold George Duncan Albert (7 April 1853 – 28 March 1884) later Prince Leopold and Duke of Albany, is born. His birth is highly publicized, mainly because Queen Victoria herself used chloroform during childbirth. Dr. John Snow gave her chloroform, but using an open-drop method rather than the inhaler he had earlier invented.
April 16, the first passenger train between Bori Bunder, Bombay and Thana covering a distance of 34 km (21 miles) was inaugurated, formally heralding the birth of railways in India.
The British government encouraged the setting up of railways by private investors under a scheme that would guarantee an annual return of 5% during the initial years of operation. Once completed, the company would be passed under government ownership, but would be operated by the company that built them.

To Babbage's delight, the Scheutzes complete the first full-scale difference engine, which they call a Tabulating Machine. It operates on 15-digit numbers and 4th-order differences, and produces printed output as Babbage's would have. A second machine is later built to the same design by the firm of Brian Donkin of London.

October, The Crimean War (October 1853–February 1856), war fought mainly on the Crimean Peninsula between the Russians and the British, French, and Ottoman Turkish, with support, from January 1855, by the army of Sardinia-Piedmont. The war arose from the conflict of great powers in the Middle East and was more directly caused by Russian demands to exercise protection over the Orthodox subjects of the Ottoman Empire.


Beginning in 1854, American warships conducted cruises along the Yangtze River in China. Initially the mission of these cruises was to show the American flag and support American consular officers. The mission became more complex over time with the added trappings of supporting American foreign policy in defining the relationship between the USA and China and later with Japan.

March 20, A meeting of Whigs, anti-Nebraska Democrats, and Free-Soilers in Ripon, Wisconsin, proposed the formation of what became the Republican Party in the United States.

March 31, U.S. Commodore Matthew Perry and representatives of Japan signed the Convention of Kanagawa (日米和親条約, Nichibei Washin Jōyaku) or Kanagawa Treaty (神奈川条約, Kanagawa Jōyaku) was signed at Kanagawa (now part of Yokohama) in Japan, ending that country's period of seclusion known as Sakoku (Japanese: 鎖国, literally "country in chains" or "lock up of country") which lasted from 1639 until 1854. The treaty was signed as a result of pressure from U.S. Commodore Matthew C. Perry, who sailed into Tokyo Bay with a fleet of warships in July 1853 and demanded the opening of the Japanese ports of Shimoda and Hakodate to United States trade, guaranteed the safety of shipwrecked U.S. sailors and established a permanent consul. This was an unequal treaty imposed on Japan by the superior strength of Perry's fleet. However, it remained illegal for Japanese people to leave Japan until the Meiji Restoration (1868).

May 30, the Kansas-Nebraska Act was passed, providing for the territorial organization of Kansas and Nebraska under the principle of popular sovereignty.

October, The Crimean War (1854–1856) was fought between Imperial Russia on one side and an alliance of France, the United Kingdom, the Kingdom of Sardinia, and the Ottoman Empire on the other. The majority of the conflict took place on the Crimean Peninsula, with additional actions occurring in western Turkey, the Baltic Sea region, and in the Russian Far East.


March 30, The Treaty of Paris was signed, ending the Crimean War.

May 21, During the small civil war known as Bleeding Kansas—a dispute over control of the new U.S. territory of Kansas under the doctrine of popular sovereignty—the town of Lawrence was sacked by a proslavery mob intent on destroying the “hotbed of abolitionism.”

May 24, a group of abolitionists led by John Brown launched a nighttime raid on a proslavery settlement at Pottawatomie Creek in Kansas Territory during which five men were murdered.

James Maxwell demonstrates that all electromagnetic and optical phenomenon were explainable in terms of stresses in the one ether.

July 3, The U.S. House of Representatives voted to admit Kansas to statehood under the antislavery resolution known as the Topeka Constitution, despite the opposition of the Senate and President Franklin Pierce.

Nikola Tesla

July 9/10 Nikola Tesla born in Smiljan, Lika (Austria-Hungary).
William Thomas Blanford notes that the "Talchir conglomerates" in India were caused by glaciation. This idea will lead to the realisation that ice ages occurred many times in the past - and in both hemispheres.
The state of Awadh/Oudh was annexed by the British East India Company. Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar was told that he would be the last Emperor and the Mughal Empire would cease to exist after him.
Excavations in Germany uncover Neanderthal fossils.
Surveyor Andrew Waugh measures Peak XV (Everest) at 29,002 feet (8,840 m)

March 6, U.S. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney announced the Dred Scott decision, making slavery legal in all U.S. territories.

May, 1857, the famous Sepoy Rebellion erupted, a mutiny by native troops that swept across northern India, weakened the British Raj, and set up future confrontations between India and Britain. Small precursors of brewing discontent involving incidences of arson in cantonment areas, began to manifest themselves in January. When the native troops of the Bengal army rose against their colonial masters in May, the ensuing insurrection was to become the bloodiest in the history of the British Empire. This war brought about the end of the British East India Company's rule in India, and led to direct rule by the British government (British Raj) of much of the Indian subcontinent, although some states retained nominal independence under their respective princes.
There is no agreed name for the events of this period, but terms in use include First War of Independence, War of Independence of 1857, Indian Mutiny, the Great Indian Mutiny, the Sepoy Mutiny, the Sepoy Rebellion, the Great Mutiny, and the Revolt of 1857. It is probably fair to say that First War of Independence and War of Independence of 1857 have, for the moment, greater prominence in India than elsewhere.
British explorers Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton KCMG FRGS (March 19, 1821 – October 20, 1890) and John Hanning Speke (May 4, 1827 – September 15, 1864) lead a Royal Geographical Society backed expedition into Central Africa seeking the source of the Nile. The journey was extremely strenuous and both men fell ill from a variety of tropical diseases. Speke suffered severely when he became temporarily deaf after a beetle crawled into his ear and he had to remove it with a knife. He also later went temporarily blind. After an arduous journey the two became the first Europeans to discover Lake Tanganyika (although Speke was still blind at this point and could not properly see the lake). Burton and Speke's exploration to Tanganyika and Victoria was, arguably, their most celebrated exploration but what followed was a prolonged public quarrel between the two men which damaged Burton's reputation severely. From surviving letters it seems that Speke already distrusted and disliked Burton before the start of their second expedition. There are several reasons why they became estranged. It seems obvious that the two men were very different in character with Speke being more in tune with the prevailing morality of Victorian England. There was obviously a great element of professional rivalry.

September 11, the Mountain Meadows massacre of the Baker-Fancher emigrant party at Mountain Meadows by Mormon militia and some Paiute supporters. The emigrants mostly from four northwestern counties in Arkansas were travelling through the Utah Territory during the Utah War to California. Sources estimate that between 100 and 140 men, women and children were killed at Mountain Meadows, a rest stop on the Old Spanish Trail, in the Utah territory. Mormons along the way had mistakenly linked them with a number of crimes and past Mormon persecutions. The emigrants stopped to rest at Mountain Meadows, near where anxious members of the Iron County Military District of the Nauvoo Legion (the Mormon militia in the Utah Territory) had been mustered to fight the approaching United States Army, which Mormons thought intended to destroy them. Initially intending to orchestrate an Indian massacre, the local leaders of church and state directed Indian agent John D. Lee to lead an auxiliary contingent of Paiute tribesmen along with some militiamen disguised as Native Americans in a raid. The emigrants fought back, and a siege ensued. Believing that complicity in the siege by Mormons would complicate the Utah War, the militia induced the party to surrender and give up their weapons. After escorting the emigrants out of their fortification, the militiamen then executed an estimated 120 men, women and children. Seventeen smaller children were spared. Investigations, interrupted by the U.S. Civil War, resulted eventually in nine indictments being issued in 1874. Despite others' involvement, only John D. Lee was tried and convicted. Lee was executed by firing squad at the location of the massacre in 1877.

Members of the ill-fated Baker-Fancher wagon train

The Fancher party's constituent trains left from four northwestern Arkansas counties.

  • From Benton county left the original Fancher train—as did the Huff
  • while from Johnson county left the Cameron, the Miller, and (a trio of cousins) the Poteet-Tackett-Jones trains;
  • from Marion county left the Mitchell, the Dunlap, and the Prewitt trains
  • while from Beller's Stand near Harrison in Carroll county (today Boone county) left the (John Twitty) Baker train—the wagon-master/captain historians reference when they call the grand company the "Baker-Fancher trains".


Believed murdered at Mountain Meadows

  1. Aden, William Allen, 19
  2. Baker, Abel, 19
  3. Baker, George W., 27
  4. Baker, John T., 52
  5. Baker, Manerva A. Beller, 25
  6. Baker, Mary Lovina, 7
  7. Beach, John, 21
  8. Beller, David W., 12
  9. Beller, Melissa Ann, 14
  10. Cameron, Henry, 16
  11. Cameron, Isom, 18
  12. Cameron, James, 14
  13. Cameron, Larkin, 8
  14. Cameron, Martha, 11
  15. Cameron, Martha, 51
  16. Cameron, Tillman, 24
  17. Cameron, William, 51
  18. Cameron?, Nancy (William Cameron's niece), 12
  19. Deshazo, Allen P., 20
  20. Dunlap, Mary Wharton, 39
  21. Dunlap, Ellender, 18
  22. Dunlap, Nancy M., 16
  23. Fancher, Alexander, 45
  24. Fancher, Eliza Ingrum, 32
  25. Fancher, Frances "Fanny" Fulfer,
  26. Fancher, Hampton, 19
  27. Fancher, James Mathew, 25
  28. Fancher, Margaret A., 7
  29. Fancher, Martha, 10
  30. Fancher, Mary, 15
  31. Fancher, Robert, 19
  32. Fancher, Sarah G., 7
  33. Fancher, Thomas, 14
  34. Fancher, William, 17
  35. Huff, Elisha,
  36. Huff, Saladia Ann Brown,
  37. Huff, William
  38. Huff, Possible unknown son
  39. Jones, Eloah Angeline Tackitt, 27
  40. Jones, John Milum, 32
  41. Jones, Newton
  42. Jones, Possible unknown daughter
  43. Jr., Jesse Dunlap, 39
  44. McEntire, Lawson A., 21
  45. Miller, James William, 9
  46. Miller, Josiah (Joseph), 30
  47. Miller, Matilda Cameron, 26
  48. Mitchell, Charles R., 25
  49. Mitchell, Infant (possible)
  50. Mitchell, Joel D., 23
  51. Mitchell, John,
  52. Mitchell, Sarah C. Baker, 21
  53. Prewit, John, 20
  54. Prewit, William, 18
  55. Tackitt, Pleasant, 25
  56. Wood, Solomon R., 38
  57. Wood, William Edward, 26

Children who were returned to live with relatives

Seventeen small children, all under the age of seven, survived the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Two years after the Massacre, the orphans were returned to their families. These children were: Mary Elizabeth, Sarah Frances and William Twitty Baker, the children of George and Minerva Baker; Rebecca, Louisa and Sarah Dunlap, the daughters of Jesse and Mary Dunlap; Prudence Angeline and Georgia Ann Dunlap, the daughters of Lorenzo and Nancy Dunlap; Christopher and Tryphenia Fancher, the children of Alexander and Elizabeth Fancher; Nancy Sophronia Huff, the daughter of Peter and Saleta Huff; Felix Marion Jones, the son of John and Eloah Jones; John Calvin, Mary and Joseph Miller, the children of Josh and Matilda Miller; and Emberson Milum and William Henry Tackitt, the sons of Pleasant and Armilda Tackitt.

  1. Baker, Mary Elizabeth, 5
  2. Baker, Sarah Frances, 3
  3. Baker, William Twitty, 9 months
  4. Dunlap, Georgia Ann, 18 months
  5. Dunlap, Louisa, 4
  6. Dunlap, Prudence Angeline, 5
  7. Dunlap, Rebecca J., 6
  8. Dunlap, Sarah E., 1
  9. Fancher, Christopher "Kit" Carson, 5
  10. Fancher, Triphenia D., 22 months
  11. Huff, Nancy Saphrona, 4 (A photograph of Nancy Saphrona Huff, taken when she was a young woman back in Arkansas, is featured in the documentary Burying the Past. (Note: it can be viewed by clicking on the footnote.))
  12. Jones, Felix Marion, 18 months
  13. Miller, John Calvin, 6
  14. Miller, Joseph, 1
  15. Miller, Mary, 4
  16. Tackitt, Emberson Milum, 4
  17. Tackitt, William Henry, 19 months

Fate unknown or evidence of survivorship in Utah Territory or Wyoming

  1. Dunlap, Lorenzo Dow, 42
  2. Dunlap, John H.,16
  3. Dunlap, Mary Ann, 13
  4. Dunlap, Talitha Emaline, 11
  5. Dunlap, Mary Ann, 9
  6. Dunlap, Thomas J., 17
  7. Dunlap, Nancy M., 16
  8. Dunlap, James D., 14
  9. Dunlap, Susannah, 12
  10. Dunlap, Lucinda, 12
  11. Dunlap, Margerette, 11
  12. Dunlap, Nancy, 9
  13. Dunlap, America Jane, 7
  14. Tackitt, Cynthia, 49
  15. Tackitt, Marion, 20
  16. Tackitt, Armilda Miller, 22
  17. Tackitt, Sebron, 18
  18. Tackitt, Matilda, 16
  19. Tackitt, James, 14
  20. Tackitt, Jones M., 12

Alfred Russel Wallace's Theory of Evolution. Alfred Russel Wallace, a British naturalist, is best known for his formulation of a theory of evolution by natural selection, at the same time as Charles Darwin. Wallace formulated his ideas during an expedition to the Malay Archipelago, where he noted differences between the animal species of Asia and Australia. He corresponded with Darwin on his ideas. Both men produced a joint paper on the theory of natural selection.
In the hot summer of 1858, the stench from the Thames was so bad that Members of Parliament fled from rooms adjacent to the river, handkerchiefs to noses, terrified that the smell itself would make them victims of the cholera epidemics that had carried off 40,000 Londoners. In the early 19th century the River Thames was practically an open sewer, with disastrous consequences for public health in London, including a seemingly endless sequence of cholera epidemics. The press called the crisis “the Great Stink”. Benjamin Disraeli introduced a Bill to Parliament that gave Sir Joseph William Bazalgette (1819-1891),the authority to construct the intercepting sewers he had designed two years earlier but had been held up by arguments over cost and design. The “Great Stink” concentrated MPs’ minds wonderfully. The Bill passed into law within 16 days.
Bazalgette subscribbed to the Miasma theory which held that disease was spead by the smell of sewage. Medical opinion at the time held that cholera was caused by foul air: a so-called miasma. Dr John Snow had earlier advanced the explanation that we now know to be correct: cholera was spread by contaminated water, but his view was not generally accepted. However, moving the smell out of London ironically also fixed the actual cause as it moved the contaminants from the London water supply.
Bazalgette's scheme consisted of three major elements:
* the intercepting sewers
* the pumping stations and the outfall sewers
* the pumping stations at Beckton and Crossness.
Over the next 16 years Bazalgette built 132 km (82 mi) of main intercepting sewers, 1,770 km (1,100 mi) of street sewers, 4 pumping stations, and the 2 treatment works at Beckton and Crossness that Thames Water still operates. The system has been extended and updated as London has expanded but the system constructed by Bazalgette continues to serve the city. He designed systems for many other communities including Cambridge, Norwich, Budapest, and Port Louis, Mauritius.
Bazalgette did much else besides. He built the Victoria Embankment between Westminster and Blackfriars Bridges (see London’s Bridges) to house the northern low-level sewer and the underground railway (now the District and Circle Lines of the London Underground). It also provided a much-needed route from Westminster to the City of London to bypass the grossly congested Strand, Fleet Street, and Ludgate Hill route and furnished that part of the capital with a much-needed green space, Victoria Embankment gardens. Bazalgette also built the Chelsea Embankment and the Albert Embankment on which St Thomas’s Hospital and the MI6 building now stand. These embankments reclaimed 52 acres from the Thames.
He re-housed 40,000 Londoners from foul tenements that he demolished to construct Charing Cross Road as well as creating other famous London streets including Garrick Street, Queen Victoria Street, Northumberland Avenue, and Shaftesbury Avenue. He built the present Hammersmith, Putney, and Battersea bridges. Towards the end of his career Bazalgette identified the need for river crossings below London Bridge, resulting in the creation of the Woolwich Free Ferry and the design of the Blackwall Tunnel (see Thames Tunnels). He laid out many of London’s parks and squares and proposed a high-level bridge near the Tower of London that we know today as Tower Bridge.
Aerial picture of Paris taken from a balloon.
Speke is the first European to sight Lake Victoria which he names afer the Queen. After discovering Lake Tanganika Burton and Speke heard of a second lake in the area, but Burton was too sick to make the voyage. Speke thus went alone, and found the lake, which he christened Lake Victoria. It was this lake which eventually proved to be the source of the river Nile. However, much of the expedition's survey equipment had been lost at this point and thus vital questions about the height and extent of the lake could not be answered.
25 August, the first transatlantic telegraph cable was successfully completed on which was sent by the United States and recieved by Great Britain, allowing transatlantic telegraph communications for the first time. Earlier transatlanticsubmarine cables installed in 1857 and 1858 only operated for a few days or weeks before they failed. The study of underwater telegraph cables accelerated interest in mathematical analysis of these transmission lines.
Hadrosaurus skeleton discovered in the US by Joseph Leidy
November 1, the Governor-General of India appointed the first Viceroy in token of the direct responsibility assumed by the Crown, announced the terms of the Queen's Proclamation in great state at Allahabad. The gracious message lost none of its force by being delivered while the clash of arms, resulting from the Indian Mutiny, was yet being heard in central India and on the frontiers of Nipal. Her Majesty accepted all treaties and engagements made by the Company with the native princes and promised to respect their rights, dignity, and honour. In an impressive passage, inserted by her own special desire, the Queen acknowledged with gratitude the solace of religion, and declared that all her Indian subjects should be protected in the exercise of their religious observances. A principle already enunciated in the Charter Act of 1833 was reinforced, and all, of every race or creed, were to be admitted as far as possible to those offices in her service for which they might be qualified. The Viceroy's proclamation of amnesty was confirmed, and the royal clemency extended to all rebels save those convicted of taking a direct part in the murder of British subjects. The aim of the Queen's government was to be that which had so frequently been announced by the Company, the benefit of all her subjects resident in India" In their prosperity will be our strength, in their contentment our security, and in their gratitude our best reward."

The first Tabulating Machine (see 1853) is bought by the Dudley Observatory in Albany, New York, and the second one by the British government. The Albany machine is used to produce a set of astronomical tables; but the observatory's director is then fired for this extravagant purchase, and the machine is never seriously used again, eventually ending up in a museum. The second machine, however, has a long and useful life.

The Fenian Brotherhood was initially founded in 1858 as the Irish Republican Brotherhood's American branch by John O'Mahony, James Stephens, and Michael Doheny. In the face of nativist suspicion, it quickly established an independent existence, although it still worked to gain Irish-American support for armed rebellion in Ireland. Initially, O'Mahony ran operations in the USA, sending funds to Stephens and the IRB in Ireland, disagreement over O'Mahony's leadership led to the formation of two Fenian Brotherhoods in 1865. The U.S. chapter of the movement was also sometimes referred to as the IRB. After the failed invasion of Canada, it was replaced by Clan na Gael.

The term Fenian derives from the Irish ''Na Fianna'' or ''Na Fianna Éireann'' who in Celtic mythology were a band of warriors formed to protect Ireland, Fionn Mac Cumhaill being the most famous of its warriors.

Sir Clements Markham of the British India Office organised a botanical expedition in 1858 to obtain seeds of the Cinchona tree for cultivation in India. The bark of the Cinchona tree is the best source of Quinine, the cure for Malaria. The botanist Richard Spruce collected for several years in south-western Ecuador and in 1860 seeds and plants were sent to both India and Kew Gardens in London. This was still at a time when local people kept the location of the trees a secret. The first plants sent to India in 1861 from Kew died, but later plantations in Travancore and Sikkim, and in Sri Lanka were successful. About the same time seeds, originally collected by Charles Ledger in Bolivia in 1864 and bought by the Dutch from an Australian in a private sale in London, were sent to Java. From these some 12,000 seedlings were produced; these were plants of Cinchona calisaya, which has a higher content of quinine than Cinchona pubescens grown by the British. In 1864 India and Java exchanged planting material.


April 8, German philosopher Edmund Husserl, founder of phenomenology, was born.

June 30, Jean-François Gravelet, known as Blondin, crossed Niagara Falls on a tightrope that was 335 metres (1,100 feet) long and 49 metres (160 feet) above the water.

Charles Darwin

August 28, Edwin Laurentine Drake (March 29, 1819 – November 9, 1880), also known as Colonel Drake, discovers oil in Titusville, Pennsylvania starting the American Petroleum industry. This so-called "Rock Oil" would replace whale oil in lamps. At one time Northwest Pennsylvania would produce half the world's oil.

Oct 14, Francois-Claudius Koeningstein, known to posterity as the anarchist Ravachol, was born to Dutch and French parents at Saint-Chamond, near St. Etienne in Eastern France.

Charles Darwin
November 1859 Charles Darwin: On the Origin of Species published. Charles Darwin revolutionized understanding of life on Earth by the publication of his highly influential work, On the Origin of Species, explaining his theory of evolution by natural selection, in 1859. Darwin had been preparing a longer work and was stimulated to publish what he regarded as this sketch of his theory by receiving communication of independent work by the naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, who had come to similar conclusions. Darwin had developed his theory of evolution from his observations of the small differences between species of animals on different islands of the Galápagos archipelago during his voyage aboard the Beagle. The idea that species evolve over time in response to selection pressures from their environment radically challenged the traditional religious view of the creation of individual species by a deity. Darwin’s theory has been central to the great modern advances in the biological sciences.
Edwin Laurentine Drake drills the world's first oil well in Titusville, Philadelphia
Harry Reid develops the elastic rebound theory of the cause of earthquakes, in which one fault moving against another causes the quakes.
Egyptian workers started working on the construction of the Canal in conditions described by historians as slave labor. The canal project was undertaken by former French Consul in Cairo and famous Canal digger Ferdinand de Lesseps.

French photographer Gaspard Felix Tournachon, also known as Nadar, carried out the first land surveys from aerial photographs taken from a balloon.

April 3, The Pony Express mail delivery system, which used continuous horse-and-rider relays along a 1,800-mile (2,900-km) route between St. Joseph, Missouri, and Sacramento, California, was launched in the United States. The Pony Express reduced the time for mail to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the USA to around ten days. The service only operated for 18 months closing in October 1861.

May 18, Abraham Lincoln became the Republican candidate for the U.S. presidency on the third ballot at the Republican National Convention in Chicago.

The Pacific Telegraph Act of 1860 called for the facilitation of communication between the east and west coasts of the United States of America. Hiram Sibley of the Western Union Telegraph Company won the contract. In 1861, Benjamin Franklin Ficklin joined Hiram Sibley in helping to form the Pacific Telegraph Company of Nebraska. At the same time, Jeptha Wade was asked by Hiram Sibley to consolidate smaller telegraph companies in California. While the Pacific Telegraph Company built west from Omaha, Nebraska, the Overland Telegraph Company of California was thus formed and built east from Carson City, Nevada. With their connection in Salt Lake City, Utah on October 24, 1861, the final link between the east and west coasts of the United States of America was made by telegraph.The Pacific Telegraph Company and the Overland Telegraph Company of California were eventually absorbed into the Western Union Telegraph Company.

Etienne Moreau theorized on the properties and distribution of ether. Edison begins research on a prototype Ether Propeller.
Abraham Lincoln 1858
Abraham Lincoln wins the election for president of the United States of America
South Carolina, seceded from the Union on December 20, 1860.
Burke and Wills led Great Northern Exploration Expedition to cross Australia from South to North.
Herman von Meyer discovers a rare fossil of soft tissue; in this case, it is the feather, the first part of what Meyer names Archaeopteryx.
Speke returns to Lake Victoria accompanied by explorer the Scottish explorer James Augustus Grant (April 11, 1827 — February 11, 1892) .
By this date, almost 500 telegraph stations across the US are recording weather observations for the Smithsonian.


Mississippi seceded from the Union on January 9, 1861, and Florida on the 10th. Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas followed.
March 3, The Russian emancipation of the serfs by Tsar Alexander II of Russia is known as 'the abolition of slavery' in Russia. Although serfs in Imperial Russia were technically not slaves, they were nonetheless forced to work and were forbidden to leave their assigned land.
March 17 Kingdom of Italy Proclaimed. The movement for the unification of Italy, called the Risorgimento, began early in the 19th century. Having gone through a revolutionary and military phase by 1848, the movement entered a diplomatic stage, which, together with Guiseppe Garibaldi’s campaigns, culminated in a successful proclamation of a united Kingdom of Italy, on March 17, 1861. Victor Emmanuel II was declared king. Rome and Venice remained outside the kingdom.
April 12 Staret of the American Cil War. The sitting US President, James Buchanan felt himself powerless to act. Federal arsenals and fortifications throughout the South were occupied by southern authorities without a shot being fired. In the four months between Lincoln’s election and his inauguration the South was allowed to strengthen its position undisturbed. Lincoln’s inaugural address was at once firm and conciliatory. Unwilling to strike the initial blow to compel the southern states back into the Union, he decided to bide his time. When a Federal ship carrying supplies was dispatched to reprovision Fort Sumter, in Charleston Harbor, the secessionist hand was forced. To forestall the resupply of the fort the Rebel batteries ringing it opened fire at 4:30 a.m. on the 12th of April, 1861, forcing its rapid capitulation.
President Lincoln immediately called upon the states to supply 75,000 troops to serve for ninety days against “combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings.” Virginia, Arkansas, and Tennessee promptly seceded. The war was on in earnest. Ironically, the combination of political events, southern pride, and willfulness succeeded in paving the way to the abolition of slavery; a condition that no combination of legal action on the part of the most virulent abolitionist could possibly have accomplished.
April 19 Lincoln proclaimed a blockade of the South.
May 21 Richmond, Va. was chosen as the Confederate capital.
Francis Galton produces the first modern weather map.
July sees 366 inches of rainfall at Cherrapunji, India, the highest figure recorded.
July 21 Northern troops retreated in disorder after the first battle of Bull Run(Manassas).

October 24, With the connection of the lines being built by the Pacific Telegraph Company building west from Omaha, Nebraska, and the Overland Telegraph Company of California building east from Carson City, Nevada in Salt Lake City, Utah the final link between the east and west coasts of the United States of America was made by telegraph.The Pacific Telegraph Company and the Overland Telegraph Company of California were eventually absorbed into the Western Union Telegraph Company.

October 26, Closure of the Pony Express service. Since its replacement by the First Transcontinental Telegraph, the Pony Express has entered the romance of the American West. Its reliance on the ability and endurance of the individual riders and horses over technological innovation is part of "American rugged individualism".
December 14 The Death of the Prince Consort, Prince Albert dies of typhoid fever. Following the death of Prince Albert in 1861, Queen Victoria withdrew into a protracted period of mourning. Nevertheless, her image, a familiar, steadying, and traditional element in a rapidly changing world, was immensely popular.
The Gatling gun, patented in 1861 by Richard Jordan Gatling, is the first machine gun to offer controlled, sequential automatic fire with automatic loading.


February 6 Grant's Northern troops cunder the command of Union naval commodore Andrew Foote, leading a flotilla of ironclads, captured Fort Henry, Tennessee, a strategic Confederate position during the American Civil War.
February 16 Fort Donelson fell to Union Forces.
March 9 In the first ever battle of ironclad ships, the ironclad ships Monitor and Merrimack battled to a draw. Ironclad ships Monitor and Merrimack fired cannonades at on another at point-blank range during the historic battle of Hampton Roads in the U.S. Civil War. The Union Monitor was designed by Swedish-American engineer John Ericsson. It was smaller and lighter than its Confederate counterpart and had a revolving gun turret with two heavy guns. Although the two armored ships fought each other for several hours, the Merrimack withdrew because of low tides, and the battle was considered a draw. Earlier, the Merrimack had been successful in breaking the Union blockade of the Chesapeake Bay and caused the United States to warn Britain about supplying warships to the Confederacy. In May of 1862, the Merrimack was destroyed so it could not be captured. The Monitor foundered and sank several months later during a storm off Cape Hatteras.

April 4, Union forces under George B. McClellan began the unsuccessful Peninsular Campaign to capture the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.
April 6-7, Both sides suffered heavy losses in the Battle of Shiloh in southwestern Tennessee, won by the Union.
April 16, The Confederacy began to draft soldiers.
April 18-29, A Union Fleet under Farragut captures New Orleans.
May 4, McClellan's Union troops occupied Yorktown, Va., and advanced on Richmond.

May 5,Mexico repelled the French forces of Napoleon III at the Battle of Puebla, a victory that became a symbol of resistance to foreign domination and is now celebrated as a national holiday, Cinco de Mayo.

May 20, U.S. President Abraham Lincoln signed the Homestead Act, which provided 160 acres of public land virtually free of charge to those who had lived on and cultivated the land for at least five years.

May 30, Northern forces occupied Corinth, Miss.
June 6, Memphis fell to Union Armies.
June 25-July 1, Confederate forces under Lee saved Richmond in the Battles of the Seven Days.
July 1, The Pacific Railway Act passed by the US Congress beginning work on the Trans-Continental railroad.
August The Minnesota massacre, which killed 700 settlers and 100 soldiers, occurred because the Indians had been denied money pledged them by treaty and were starving. A military commission sentenced 303 Sioux to death by hanging, but Abraham Lincoln overturned most of the sentences. On December 26, 1862, thirty-eight Santees were executed, including Tehedo Necha
August 29-30, Lee and Jackson led Southern troops to victory in the second Battle of Bull Run.
September 17, Confederate forces retreated in defeat after the Bloody Battle of Antietam(Sharpsburg).

Abraham Lincoln 1862

September 22, Lincoln issued a Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.
October 8, Buell's forces ended Bragg's invasion of Kentucky in the Battle of Perryville.
December 13, Burnside's Union forces received a crushing blow in the Battle of Fredericksburg.
December 31-January 2, 1863 Union troops under Rosecrans forced the Confederates to retreat after the Battle of Murfreesboro (Stones River).
Speke and Grant are the first European explorers to visit the Buganda people in Uganda. Speke reaches the source of the White Nile, at Ripon falls issuing from Lake Victoria's north.
Angstrom Discovers Existence of Hydrogen in the Sun. Anders Jonas Ångström, a Swedish astronomer and physicist, is credited with the discovery of the presence of hydrogen in the atmosphere of the Sun. Ångström pioneered the study of spectroscopy, publishing Optiska Undersökningar (Optical Investigations) in 1853. In 1868 he published Recherches Sur le Spectre Solaire (Researches on the Solar Spectrum), in which he set out measurements of over 1,000 spectral lines in an atlas of the solar spectrum. The unit of measurement of wavelengths introduced in his work has been generally accepted as the angstrom.
First multispectral imagery taken by Du Hauron with a single-lens beam splitter technique.
Kelvin uses the Earth's cooling time to propose an age in the range 20-400 million years.
1863 January 1 Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.
10 January,the Metropolitan Railway opened the world's first underground railway between Paddington (Bishop's Road) and Farringdon Street in London in an attempt to ease the traffic through the centre of London. It ran from Paddington to Farringdon, linking three mainline termini with the City, London’s central business district. Most of this 6 km (3? mi) line, still used today, runs under main roads and was built using “cut and cover” construction. This entails digging out a wide trench along the street, building retaining walls, and roofing over the trackbed before reinstating the roadway above. Locomotives with special condensing equipment were used to minimize steam emission in the tunnels.
March 3 The North passed a draft law.
May 1-4 Northern troops under Hooker were defeated in the Battle of Chancellorsville.
May 1-19 Grant's army defeated Confederates in Mississippi and began to besiege Vicksburg.
May 6 The Pacific Railroad bill passed the House of Representatives, and the Senate on June 20. Lincoln signed it into law on July 1 1862. The act called for several companies to build the railroad: from the west, the Central Pacific and the Nevada Central; and from the east, the newly chartered Union Pacific. Each was required to build only 50 miles in the first year; after that, only 50 more miles were required each year. Besides land grants along the right-of-way, each railroad was subsidized $16,000 for each mile built over an easy grade, $32,000 in the high plains, and $48,000 for each mile in the mountains. The race was on to see which road could build the furthest.
July 1-3 The Battle of Gettysburg ended in a Southern defeat and marked a turning point in the war.
July 4 Vicksburg fell to Northern troops.
July 8 Northern forces occupied Port Hudson, La.
September 19-20 Southern troops under Bragg won the Battle of Chickamauga.
Abraham Lincoln 1863
November 19 Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg address at the dedication of the Civil War cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
Gettysburg Address

November 23-25 Grant and Thomas led Union armies to victory in the Battle of Chattanooga.
US National Academy of Sciences initiated by Abraham Lincoln.
Granula was the first manufactured breakfast cereal invented by James Caleb Jackson in 1863. Granula was an early version of Grape-Nuts, comprising of heavy grains of bran-rich Graham flour. The grains had to be soaked overnight before use. The cereal was manufactured from a dough of Graham flour rolled into sheets and baked. The dried sheets were then broken into pieces, baked again, and broken into smaller pieces.

January 8 in Sacramento, California, Governor Leland Stanford ceremoniously broke ground to begin construction of the Central Pacific Railroad. The Central Pacific made great progress along the Sacramento Valley, however construction was later slowed; first by the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, then by the mountains themselves and most importantly by winter snow storms. As a result, the Central Pacific expanded its efforts to hire immigrant laborers (many of which were Chinese). The immigrants seemed to be more willing to tolerate the horrible conditions, and progress continued. Unfortunately, the increasing necessity for tunneling then began to slow progess of the line yet again. To combat this, Central Pacific began to use the newly-invented and very unstable nitroglycerin explosives — which accelerated both the rate of construction and the mortality of the laborers. Appalled by the losses, the Central Pacific began to use less volatile explosives. Construction began again in earnest.
March 9 Grant became general in chief of the North.
April 8-9 Federal troops under Banks met defeat in the Red River expedition.
May 5-6 Union and Confederate troops clashed in the Battle of the Wilderness.
May 8-12 Grant and Lee held their position in the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House.
June 3 The Union suffered heavy losses in the Battle of Cold Harbor.
June 20 Grant's Troops laid siege to Petersburg, Va.
July 11-12 Early's Confederate forces almost reached Washington, but retreated after brief fighting.
August 5 Farragut won the Battle of Mobile Bay.
September 2 Northern troops under Sherman captured Atlanta.
October 2, Launch of the Ictineo II: World's First Steam Powered Submarine.
Ictineo II Submarine Plans
The Ictineo II was invented and built by Narcis Monturiol, an engineer born in Figueres (Girona, Spain) on September 28, 1819. Monturiol was a utopian social revolutionary, political misfit and self-taught engineer, he studied Law and wrote about Geography, Physics and Natural History. He first conceived the Ictineo to help coral fishermen in their rough job. He started to build the submarine on February 10, 1862. It was 17 meter long and 65 tons of weight, and was launched on October 2, 1864. In the beginning it worked with a propeller operated by sixteen men, but owe to its poor performance he decided to change the human power for a 6 Hp steam engine.
Ictineo II Submarine
The re-launching took place on October 22, 1867, once the difficulties were overcome. The submarine did thirteen immersions to as much as to 30 meters deep and the longest one lasted for seven and a half hours, while underwater it was propelled by a one-cylinder machine set on the ship's stern. Narcis Monturiol was ahead of his time and amongst other things, he invented the double hull as well as the bulb-shaped bow. In 1868 because of financial problems the Ictineo II was seized by creditors, broken up and sold as scrap metal. Narcis Monturiol died on September 6, 1885.
November 8 Lincoln was re-elected President.
November 15 Sherman began his march to the sea.
November 16 Hood invaded Tennessee.
November 30 Schofield's Union forces inflicted heavy losses on Hood in the Battle of Franklin.
December 15-16 The Battle of Nashville smashed Hood's army.
December 21 Sherman's troops occupied Savannah, Ga.
Massive cyclone near Calcutta, India, killed an estimated 70,000 of the population.
Photographs taken from a balloon used for military purposes during the American civil war.
First oil pipeline constructed by van Syckel in Pennsylvania; it was rebuilt after a rival group destroyed it.

James Clerk Maxwell presents equations describing electromagnetic fields.


February 3 The Hampton Roads Peace Conference failed to end the American Civil War.
February 6 Lee became general in chief of the South.
April 2 Confederate troops gave up Petersburg and Richmond.
April 9 Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox.
Abraham Lincoln 1865
April 14 President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.
April 26 Johnston surrendered to Sherman.
May 4 Confederate forces in Alabama and Mississippi surrendered.
May 26 The last Confederate troops surrendered.

William Booth

July 2, In London's East End, William Booth founded the ministry later called the Salvation Army.

July 4, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was published.

Joseph Lister

Joseph Lister Discovers Antiseptics. In 1865 British surgeon Joseph Lister encountered the germ theory, developed by Louis Pasteur, that fermentation and putrefaction were caused by micro-organisms brought into contact with organic matter. Lister applied carbolic acid to clean instruments, and directly to wounds and dressings. Lister’s development of the technique of sterilization greatly reduced mortality in surgery. related links © 1993-2003 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Founding of the Commons Preservation Society in England to protect woodlands and heaths used by communities for recreation.
Peak XV is renamed Mount Everest.
French doctor Louis Pasteur (December 27, 1822 – September 28, 1895) publishes his Germ Theory of Disease. While Pasteur was not the first to propose germ theory (Girolamo Fracastoro, Agostino Bassi, Friedrich Henle and others had suggested it earlier), he developed it and conducted experiments that clearly indicated its correctness and managed to convince most of Europe it was true. Today he is often regarded as the father of germ theory and bacteriology, together with Robert Koch.

December 18, by proclamation of the U.S. secretary of state, the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, outlawing slavery, officially entered into force, having been ratified by the requisite states on December 6 1865.


June 14 - August 23, Seven Weeks' War. The Seven Weeks’ War was an armed conflict between Austria and Prussia. The war was fought for control over the 39-state German Confederation, following the unsatisfactory conclusion of the Convention of Gastein (1865). The speed of victory demonstrated the effectiveness of the Prussian military system.
September 21 H.G. Wells was born

1866-1868, Captain Nemo begins his campaign of destruction against the warships of the British Empire using the submarine Nautilus. The Nautilus caused many ships to sink by ramming them. In fact Nemo is Latin for "no one" and the real name of this mysterious individual is unknown. The impression is that Nemo was an anarchist philosopher rebelling against what he sees as the repressive governments of the world.  He has also supplied gold to people on the island of Crete who are fighting for independence from Turkey. He is also a scientific genius who roams the depths of the sea in his submarine, the Nautilus, which he helped build on a deserted island. Nemo tries to project a stern, controlled confidence, but he is driven by a thirst for vengeance, and wracked by remorse over the deaths of his crewmembers and even by the deaths of enemy sailors. He eschews dry land having forsworn all ties with it, and when he does step on it, does so only when the land is uninhabited, such as with Antarctica and desert islands such as Lincoln Island. He, is quite enamored by the sea and holds that true freedom exists only beneath the waves. In keeping with his detestation for the nations of the surface he uses no products that are not marine in nature, be it food, clothing, furnishing or even, tobacco.

1867 July 1, Dominion of Canada established on this day in 1867, with the British North America Act, the British colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Canada were united as the Dominion of Canada, and the province of Canada was separated into Quebec and Ontario.

Alfred Nobel

Alfred Nobel Invents Dynamite. Swedish chemist and philanthropist Alfred Nobel is remembered for his invention of dynamite and for the endowment of the Alfred Nobel Foundation that awards prizes annually in a number of categories. Nobel had sought a safe way to handle the highly volatile nitroglycerine in industry, so he mixed nitroglycerin with kieselguhr to produce dynamite, a safer explosive, which he patented in 1867. He went on to develop gelignite in 1875 and a smokeless form of gunpowder, named ballistite, in 1887.


June 19, The archduke of Austria and emperor of Mexico, a man whose naive liberalism proved unequal to the international intrigues that had put him on the throne and to the brutal struggles within Mexico, Maximilian, was executed by a firing squad.

Karl Marx
Karl Marx published Das Kapital. Das Kapital, one of the most influential treatises of the 19th century, represents a key analysis of the capitalist system. In it, the German philosopher and political author Karl Marx introduced the idea of “surplus value”; the concepts of class struggle and the exploitation of the working class; and the prediction of socialism’s victory over capitalism. Further volumes were published in 1885 and 1894.
Karl Marx, along with Friedrich Engels, defined communism. In the Communist Manifesto, which they wrote and published themselves in London in 1848, Marx and Engels portrayed the natural evolution of a communist utopia from capitalism. This revolutionary theory added fuel to the social struggles that characterized Europe during the latter half of the 19th century. Marx theorized that competition among capitalists would force more and more of them to be enveloped by the growing masses. A proletarian dictatorship would rule until all vestiges of capitalism had been eliminated; a communist utopia would then naturally emerge. Marx and Engels founded the International Workingman’s Association in 1864 to actively advocate their position and consider ways to speed the process.
The United States Geological Survey established.
March 30, William H. Seward, secretary of state under U.S. President Andrew Johnson, signed the Alaska Purchase, a treaty ceding Russian North America to the United States for a price—$7.2 million—that amounted to about two cents per acre.

April 6, The Japanese emperor Meiji issued the Charter Oath, which served to modernize the country during the Meiji Restoration.

May 16, The first of two key votes was held in the Senate impeachment trial of U.S. President Andrew Johnson, who was ultimately acquitted of all charges.

First working ether flyer mechanism demonstrated by Thomas A. Edison.

Sir Clements Markham of the British India Office organised a botanical expedition in 1858 to obtain seeds of the Cinchona tree for cultivation in India. The bark of the Cinchona tree is the best source of Quinine, the cure for Malaria. The botanist Richard Spruce collected for several years in south-western Ecuador and in 1860 seeds and plants were sent to both India and Kew Gardens in London. This was still at a time when local people kept the location of the trees a secret. The first plants sent to India in 1861 from Kew died, but later plantations in Travancore and Sikkim, and in Sri Lanka were successful. About the same time seeds, originally collected by Charles Ledger in Bolivia in 1864 and bought by the Dutch from an Australian in a private sale in London, were sent to Java. From these some 12,000 seedlings were produced; these were plants of Cinchona calisaya, which has a higher content of quinine than Cinchona pubescens grown by the British. In 1864 India and Java exchanged planting material.

June 10, Serbian Prince Michael III was assassinated, derailing the Balkan League's plans for a coordinated rebellion against the Ottomans and destroying the league.

High Street Kensington
Opening of the first section of the Metropolitan District Railway from South Kensington to Westminster (now part of the District and Circle Lines) in London.
Sir Edward Frankland, a British chemist, is credited, together with British astronomer Sir Joseph Lockyer, with the discovery of helium as a separate element. They undertook research into the spectrum of the Sun, identifying helium as a chemical element in its own right, whereas hitherto it had been viewed as a line in the spectrum. Frankland is perhaps better known for his development of the theory of chemical valency.
Life discovered at 2,400 fathoms depth, disproving earlier theories of life not existing below 300 fathoms.

2 June, Captain Nemo's submarine the Nautilus goes down in the Maelstrom, a large whirlpool off the coast of Norway.

15 October, Captian Nemo is said to have died, on board the Nautilus, at Dakkar Grotto under Lincoln Island in the South Pacific. The last rites were administered by Cyrus Harding, one of the castaways on the island who had been saved by the Captain himself, and the ship then submerged into the waters of the grotto.


May 10 Completion of the Trans-Continental Railroad in the USA.
Joining the Rails
Joining of the rails linking the Central and Union Pacific Railroads, May 10, 1869, Promontory Summit, Utah. CPRR's "Jupiter" engine on the left, UPRR's engine "No. 119" on the right. "One of the classic icons of American imagery." Less well known is that Dr. Arliss Loveless tried to disrupt the event and kidnap President Ulysses S. Grant using a giant mechanical spider. Whilst his attempt was foild by two unknown Feral agents President Grant was unable to attend the joining ceremony.
Poster announcing railroad's opening
Poster announcing railroad's opening

November 17 Suez Canal Opened. The Suez Canal (Arabic: transliteration: Qana al-Suways), is a large artificial canal in Egypt, west of the Sinai Peninsula. It is 163 km (101 miles) long and 300 m (984 ft) wide at its narrowest point, and runs between Port Said (Bur Sa'id) on the Mediterranean Sea, and Suez (al-Suways) on the Red Sea. The canal allows two-way water transportation, most importantly between Europe and Asia without circumnavigation of Africa. Before its opening in 1869, goods were sometimes offloaded from ships and carried over land between the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. The canal comprises two parts, north and south of the Great Bitter Lake, linking the Mediterranean Sea to the Gulf of Suez on the Red Sea.
Providing a shortcut for ships travelling from the Mediterranean Sea to ports in east Africa, the Middle East, and India; The canal was designed by Vicomte Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps, a French diplomat and engineer. The Canal was officially inaugurated by Khedive Ismail in an extravagant and lavish ceremony. French, British, Russian, and other Royalty were invited for the inauguration which coincided with the re-planning of Cairo. A highway was constructed linking Cairo to the new city of Ismailia, an Opera House was built, and Verdi was commissioned to compose his famous opera, "Aida" for the opening ceremony. Ironically, Verdi did not complete the work in time and "Aida" premiered at the Cairo Opera a year later.

Ferdinand De Lesseps

Ferdinand de Lesseps was born on November 19, 1805 in Versailles, France. His Family was long distinguished in the French diplomatic service. At age 19, having studied law, he was appointed eleve-counsel to his uncle, then the French ambassador to Lisbon. He served in Tunis later with his father, until 1832 the year of his fathers death. Then came 7 years in Egypt, later Rotterdam, Malaga, Barcelona and Madrid. With the new Viceroy Mohammed Said in Egypt, whom de Lesseps had befriended years ago, he rushed to Cairo and soon the construction of the Suez Canal under his command began. November 17, 1869 the Gran Opening with luxuries ceremonies, a Cairo opera house had been built for the occasion and Verdi had been commissioned to write Aida. De Lesseps became a hero presented with many decorations. De Lesseps was granted a "firman" or decree by the khedive Said of Egypt to run the Canal for 99 years after completion.De Lesseps died in France in 1894.

Dmitry Mendeleyev’s periodic table was constructed on the basis of the periodic law, which he formulated in 1869. The law stated that the chemical properties of the elements depend on their relative atomic masses. Therefore, in the table the elements were arranged by their related groups by atomic numbers. Mendeleyev formulated a second, improved, version of his table in 1871. His Principles of Chemistry (1868-1870) became a classic. German chemist Julius Lothar Meyer independently formulated the periodic law and a table of elements in Die modernen Theorien der Chemie (Modern Chemical Theories), published in 1864.
1869 - 1870 First Vatican Council Ecumenical council convened by Pope Pius IX which took place in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The council defined papal primacy of jurisdiction and formulated the controversial doctrine of papal infallibility in constitutions Dei Filius and Pastor Aeternus.
Joseph Lockyer founded Nature journal.
Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) discovered. DNA was first isolated by Friedrich Miescher who, in 1869, discovered a microscopic substance in the pus of discarded surgical bandages. As it resided in the nuclei of cells, he called it "nuclein".


February 3, the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was ratified, guaranteeing the right to vote regardless of race and intending to ensure, with the Fourteenth Amendment, the civil rights of former slaves.

Edison's Martian Expedition pilots primitive Ether Flyer to Mars, and returns.
Earth discovers that Mars is inhabited.
March, Robert Maitland Brereton, a British engineer was responsible for the expansion of the Indian peninsula railway from 1857 onwards. In March 1870, he was responsible for the linking of both the rail systems, which by then had a network of 6,400 km (4,000 miles).

Extent of Great Indian Peninsular Railway network in 1870

March 31, Thomas Peterson-Mundy of Perth Amboy, New Jersey, became the first African American to vote under the Fifteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Discovery of liftwood on Mars revolutionizes flight. The Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, London begins to offer rewards for viable liftwood plants and seeds.

June 21, Tientsin Massacre occurs in Tientsin, China. This was a violent outbreak of Chinese xenophobic sentiment, that nearly precipitated international warfare and signaled the end of the “cooperative policy” between China and the Western treaty powers. Before the incident, rumours circulated in Tientsin that the French Sisters of Charity were kidnapping and mutilating Chinese children.

The telegraph lines from Britain to India were connected in 1870 (those several companies combined to form the Eastern Telegraph Company in 1872).
1870 - 1871 Franco-Prussian War. The Franco-Prussian War was caused by the clash between the desire of Prince Bismarck’s Prussia to be at the heart of a unified Germany and the France of emperor Napoleon III seeking to reaffirm itself as the dominant European power. France, under the leadership of Emperor Napoleon III provoked war with Prussia. France lost badly to Wilhelm I (Wilhelm II's grandfather). Prussia’s victory guaranteed the unification of Germany and confirmed the dominance of the Prussian military system in Europe. The war was ended by the Treaty of Frankfurt of 1871. Among the losses were the provinces of Alsace-Lorraine in western France which were annexed to Germany. Bismarck was against this action fearing the French would never forgive it.

"A generation that has taken a beating is always followed by a generation that deals one."
Bismarck on France

Moltke (the senior) summed it up well: "What our sword has won in half a year our sword must guard for half a century"

Education Act of 1870 passed in England. The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Robert Lowe, remarked that the government would now "have to educate our masters." As a result of this view, the government passed the 1870 Education Act. The act, drafted by William Forster stated: (a) the country would be divided into about 2500 school districts; (b) School Boards were to be elected by ratepayers in each district; (c) the School Boards were to examine the provision of elementary education in their district, provided then by Voluntary Societies, and if there were not enough school places, they could build and maintain schools out of the rates; (d) the school Boards could make their own by-laws which would allow them to charge fees or, if they wanted, to let children in free. The 1870 Education Act allowed women to vote for the School Boards. Women were also granted the right to be candidates to serve on the School Boards. Several feminists saw this as an opportunity to show they were capable of public administration. In 1870, four women, Flora Stevenson, Lydia Becker, Emily Davies and Elizabeth Garrett were elected to local School Boards. Elizabeth Garrett, a popular local doctor, obtained more votes Marylebone than any other candidate in the country.

Opening of the first London Tube tunnel, from the Tower of London to Bermondsey.

Tyndall Effect Explained by British physicist, John Tyndall, who conducted research on colloids, leading to his discovery of what is now known as the Tyndall effect. He investigated the dispersion of light beams through colloidal suspensions. The perceived blue colour of the sky is a result of the Tyndall effect. Tyndall undertook extensive research into the nature of light, sound, and heat and also investigated the structure and development of glaciers.
First all-metal bicycle patented (1870)

1871 Franco-Prussian war ends in German victory.
Wilhelm I
Wilhelm I crowned Emperor of Germany at the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles. William I was Emperor of Germany from 1871 to 1888 and King of Prussia from 1861 to 1888. Wilhelm and the Prussian statesman Otto von Bismarck unified the German states under the Prussian crown in 1867 as the North German Confederation.
Jan 1, The German Second Empire (1871 - 1918) was established at Versailles, France, following the unification of German states, with the king of Prussia as emperor and the architect of German unification, Otto van Bismarck, as chancellor. Under his leadership economic and military expansion led to Germany’s emergence as a major world power.
Otto von Bismark
Prince Otto Edward Leopold von Bismarck, aka The Iron Chancellor, a Prussian statesman, united the German states into one empire. Bismarck is noted for saying that the great problems of Germany would not be settled by speeches and resolutions but by “blood and iron”.
"I am bored. The great things are done. The German Reich is made."
Bismarck after the German unification of 1871

18 Jan , The German Second Empire, forged as a result of diplomacy rather than an outpouring of popular nationalist feeling, was founded on this date in the aftermath of three successful wars by the North German state of Prussia.

18 Mar, The Commune of Paris, which was an insurrection of Parisians against the French government, began, lasting until May 28. The Paris Commune was a short-lived French revolutionary government that took power in 1871 in the aftermath of the defeat of France in the Franco-Prussian War. With the government capitulating to the peace terms of the Prussians, and the victorious Prussian army encamped outside Paris, the city broke into revolt. The insurrection led to the establishment of a proletarian dictatorship and the election of a council, which came to be known as the Commune. The Communards, consisting of followers of the revolutionary socialist Auguste Blanqui, and of Pierre Proudhon, who had died in 1865, began to implement reforms to working conditions but were rapidly and ruthlessly crushed by government forces, who massacred over 20,000 citizens, while the Communards killed many of their hostages in retaliation. The Paris Commune had lasted barely two months, but it became an important symbol to revolutionary Communists. For Karl Marx, who analysed it in The Civil War in France, the Commune vindicated his ideas on the process of history, confirming revolution as a means to liberate the proletariat.
British naturalist Charles Darwin caused a storm of controversy by publishing The Descent of Man (1871), in which he set out his theories on the evolution of human beings, and developed the theory of sexual selection as a means of organic change. This went further than his earlier work, On The Origin of Species, which had deliberately avoided the controversial issues relating to human evolution.

10 May, the Reichsland of Alsace-Lorraine, territory ceded to the German Empire in the Treaty of Frankfurt of 10 May 1871 following the Franco-Prussian war, was given a special status. Contrary to German hopes, the population of Alsace-Lorraine did not merge quickly with the new Empire
November 10, Famous meeting between Livingstone and Henry Morton Stanley, a New York Herald correspondent, at Ujiji, a small village on the shore of Lake Tanganyika and famously greeted him (at least according to his own journal) by saying "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" (which was tongue-in-cheek because Livingstone was the only white person for hundreds of miles).
I would have run to him, only I was a coward in the presence of such a mob--would have embraced him, but that I did not know how he would receive me; so I did what moral cowardice and false pride suggested was the best thing--walked deliberately to him, took off my hat, and said: "DR. LIVINGSTONE, I PRESUME?" "Yes," said he, with a kind, cordial smile, lifting his cap slightly. (from How I Found Livingstone)
In 1871 Stanley had started his expedition to East Africa. To Katie Gough-Roberts, a young woman living in Denbigh, he sent a number of letters, and planned to marry her after the journey. However, she married an architect. Although he was deserted by his bearers, plagued by disease and warring tribes but after he found Livingstone near Lake Tanganyika in Ujiji on November 10, 1871 they explored the northern end of Lake Tangayika - Richard Francis Burton claimed Lake Tangayika as the source of the River Nile. Livingstone had journeyed extensively in central and southern Africa from 1840 and fought to destroy the slave tradeStanley joined him in exploring the region, establishing for certain that there was no connection between Lake Tanganyika and the river Nile. On his return, he wrote a book about his experiences.

May 13, With the Law of Guarantees (Legge Delle Guarentigie), the Italian government attempted to settle the question of its relationship with the Pope, who had been deprived of his lands in central Italy duringthe process of Italian national unification.

May 21, the Commune of Paris revolted against the French national government under Adolphe Thiers, beginning a period of violence known as “Bloody Week.”

Babbage produces a prototype section of the Analytical Engine's mill and printer.


The Royal Ethereal Research Establishment at Farnborough is opened. It is staffed bya collection of Government employed scientists and inventors researching all things Ethereal. It is also, however, a military establishment and as a result most of the employees hold a military commission of some kind, thus making it a potential background site for PC's wishing to combine military and scientific careers.

First American pterosaur fossils discovered by Othniel Charles Marsh.
"P. T. Barnum's Grand Traveling Museum, Menagerie, Caravan & Hippodrome"opens in Brooklyn, New York, , a traveling amalgamation of circus, menagerie and museum of "freaks".

Phineas Taylor Barnum (1810-1891)

Phineas Taylor Barnum's (July 5, 1810 – April 7, 1891) circus by 1872 was billing itself as "The Greatest Show on Earth" went through a number of variants on these names: "P.T. Barnum's Travelling World's Fair, Great Roman Hippodrome and Greatest Show On Earth", and after an 1881 merger with James Bailey and James L. Hutchinson, "P.T. Barnum's Greatest Show On Earth, And The Great London Circus, Sanger's Royal British Menagerie and The Grand International Allied Shows United", soon shortened to "Barnum & London Circus". He and Bailey split up again in 1885, but came back together in 1888 with the "Barnum & Bailey Greatest Show On Earth", later "Barnum & Bailey Circus", which toured around the world. The show's primary attraction was Jumbo, an African elephant he purchased in 1882 from the London Zoo.
October 8 and 9, fire destroys 3.5 square miles of Chicago.
Jesse James robs his first passenger train
Italian unification (called in Italian the Risorgimento, or "Resurgence") was the political and social process that unified disparate states of the Italian peninsula into the single nation of Italy. It is difficult to pin down exact dates for the beginning and end of Italian reunification, but most scholars agree that it began with the end of Napoleonic rule and the Congress of Vienna in 1815, and largely ended with the Franco-Prussian War in 1871, though the last "città irredente" did not join the Kingdom of Italy until the Treaty of Saint-Germain after World War I.
1872 First British foothold on Mars with the establishment of the Permanent British Quarter in Parhoon.
France passes law of Universal Service. (Draft)
March 1, President Ulysses S. Grant signed a bill into law that created Yellowstone National Park.
1873 Edison loses patent suit against Armstrong Ether Flyer Company. Both firms compete vigorously in design and construction of spacecraft.
The Home Rule League was one of the organizations that campaigned for Ireland’s legislative independence from the United Kingdom. In particular, it sought to secure an Irish parliament that would be answerable to Westminster on imperial matters only.
After much British pressure, Sultan Barghash of Zanzibar agrees to halt the slave trade in East Africa.
1873 - 1874 James Starley Invents Early Bicycle. James Starley, British inventor, is best known for his development of the early bicycle. His bicycle, using steel-rimmed wheels with solid rubber tyres, was patented in 1869. Starley developed the geared bicycle, producing a machine that incorporated most of the design features of what has become known as the high-wheel bicycle.
David Livingstone died in 1873 on the Shores of Lake Bagweulu. His body was shipped back to England and buried in Westminster Abbey - Henry Morton Stanley was one of the pall-bearers.
Central Park in New York is completed. The park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, both of whom later created Brooklyn's Prospect Park. While much of the park looks natural, it is in fact almost entirely landscaped and contains several artificial lakes, extensive walking tracks, two ice-skating rinks, a wildlife sanctuary, and grassy areas used for various sporting pursuits, as well as playgrounds for children. The park is a popular oasis for migrating birds, and thus is popular with bird watchers. The park was not part of the Commissioners' Plan of 1811. However, between 1821 and 1855, New York City nearly quadrupled in population.
New York In The 1850s

As the city expanded, people were drawn to the few open spaces, mainly cemeteries, to get away from the noise and chaotic life in the city. Before long, however, New York City's need for a great public park was voiced by the poet and editor of the then-Evening Post (now the New York Post), William Cullen Bryant, and by the first American landscape architect, Andrew Jackson Downing, who began to publicize the city's need for a public park in 1844. A stylish place for open-air driving, like the Bois de Boulogne in Paris or London's Hyde Park, was felt to be needed by many influential New Yorkers, and in 1853 the New York legislature designated a 700 acre (2.8 km²) area from 59th to 106th Streets for the creation of the park, to a cost of more than US$5 million for the land alone.

The first French scientific expedition to Mars, led by Dr. Claude Massigny, lands near Idaeus Fons and establishes friendly relations with it's ruler King Lotmar.


Armstrong expedition to Venus fails to return.
Benjamin Disraeli took office as British Prime minister.
Belgians and French establish enclaves on Mars.
The first ice-cream soda sold.


Collingswood Expedition to Venus fails to return.
France establishes the "Ecole Superieure de Guerre", The War College.
Count von Zeppelin
July First flight of Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin's Luft Zeppelin LZ-1 rigid airship
Edison discovers "Etheric Force," an electric phenomenon that is the foundation of wireless telegraphy.
Lapworth identifies the Ordovician System. The Ordovician System was proposed by Charles Lapworth in 1879 as a compromise to resolve the conflict between Adam Sedgwick and Roderick Murchison over the interval of overlap of their Cambrian and Silurian systems. The Ordovician System was based on fossiliferous rock units (Arenig, Bala, Llandeilo, and Caradoc) long-established in Wales and the Welsh Borderlands, and by 1900 it was widely used in Britain and elsewhere in the world. However, as late as 1976 (Williams et al, 1976), the upper and lower boundaries of the system were subject to substantially different interpretations among Ordovician stratigraphers, and, over time, the traditional British Ordovician series were revised substantially (Fortey et al, 1995). Although the British series became the lingua franca for global correlation, such correlation was greatly hindered by the high level of biogeographic and ecologic differentiation of Ordovician biotas. Accordingly, regional series and stages were established for Ordovician successions on many different paleoplates.
Britain buys the Suez canal. The prime minister Benjamin Disraeli had long been interested in buying part of the Suez for Britain, but so were several other countries. The biggest opposition would come from the French shareholders, but the French knew something that nobody else did. They knew that the Khedive had spent the country's surplus money and needed cash fast. The Khedive had decided that if someone were to offer, he would sell his 177.2 shares of the Suez Canal Company. Since the French didn't think anybody else knew, they took their time raising the money. They did not know that Disraeli was a friend to the world's largest banker at the time, Baron Lionel de Rothschild. Rothschild knew of the Khedive's financial state and when Disraeli asked about it, he told. Disraeli then also asked if he could get a loan for 4 million British pounds to buy the shares, and Rothschild agreed. He immediately sent a courier to propose the buy to the Khedive. French, Turkish, and Russian spies all discovered this information and sent their own people but it was too late. Disraeli had already bought the Khedive's shares. He then convinced the Queen and Parliament to pay off his debt to Rothschild.
Sir Henry Morton Stanley, also known in the Congo as Bula Matari (Breaker of Rocks or, alternatively, Sledge Hammer) , born John Rowlands (January 28, 1841 – May 10, 1904), meets with Kabaka (King) Mutesa I of the Buganda Kingdom and then goes to explore the region around Lake Victoria.
Ferdinand de Lesseps made his first public declaration of interest in an interoceanic canal.
President Ulysses Grant vetoes a bill protecting buffalo and other wildlife.

The Channel Tunnel. There had been numerous proposals for a tunnel under the channel throughout the 19th Century including one by Napoleon, but the first serious attempt to build a tunnel came with an Act of Parliament in 1875 authorising the Channel Tunnel Company Ltd. to start preliminary trials. This was an Anglo French project with a simultaneous Act of Parliament in France.

The first expeditions of the Belgians was led by Henry Morton Stanley to "prove that the Congo natives were susceptible of civilization and that the Congo basin was rich enough to repay exploitation". Stanley's revelation of the commercial possibilities of the region resulted in the setting up of a large trading venture and led to the founding of the Congo Free State in 1885.

The first Martian expeditions of the Belgians were also led by Henry Morton Stanley to "prove that the Coprates natives were susceptible of civilization and that the Coprates valley was rich enough to repay exploitation". Stanley's revelation of the commercial possibilities of the region resulted in the setting up of a large trading venture and led to frequent native rebellions in 1882 as well as the founding of the Upper Coprates State in 1885. While David Livingstone combined geographical, religious, commercial, and humanitarian goals in his exploration journeys, Stanley created the direct link between exploration and colonization, especially in the service of Leopold II of Belgium. Stanley represented Leopold in signing treaties with bewildered Martian chiefs. Leopold II's ruthless exploitation of the natural resources of the Congo ("the rubber atrocities") and Coprates were protested by the international community and the Belgian parliament eventually forced the king to give up personal control of the regions.


February 2, The National League, the oldest existing major-league professional baseball organization in the United States, began play as the National League of Professional Baseball Clubs.

Queen Victoria Aged 66
Queen Victoria proclaimed Emperess of India.
March 10, Alexander Graham Bell Invents the Telephone. Alexander Graham Bell, a British-born American inventor, is famed for his invention of the telephone as a means of transmitting speech. He successfully tested his design for the telephone on March 10, 1876, when he managed to transmit a complete sentence. The following year he founded the Bell Telephone Company to exploit commercially and further develop the invention. Bell also invented the audiometer, the induction balance, and the wax recording cylinder, a forerunner of the gramophone.

Alexander Graham Bell's Telephone

Alexander Graham Bell constructed this prototype telephone consisting of a coil of wire, a magnetic arm and a taut membrane. Any sound causes the membrane, and hence the magnetic arm, to vibrate. The movement of the magnet induces a fluctuating electric current in the coil. This electrical signal can be reconverted into sound by an identical apparatus at the other end of the circuit.

May 26, The Challenger Expedition, a groundbreaking oceanographic exploration cruise carried out by the British Admiralty and the Royal Society, concluded successfully.

June 25th, General George Armstrong Custer and his entire command are wiped out at the battle of the Little Big Horn.
Robert Koch obtains pure cultures of the anthrax bacillus and transmits the disease to laboratory animals; the first time a germ is definitively proven to cause a disease.
The Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland is founded.
Cyclone in Bangladesh kills an estimated 215,000.
The British Royal Society expedition to Mercury, led by Sir Basil Throckmorton planted the British flag for the first time on Mercury.
Root beer mass produced for public sale for the first time.
Start of three year drought and famine in China; an estimated 9 million people die from its effects.

In 1876, The English explorer Sir Henry Wickham (May 29, 1846 – September 27, 1928), at the request of the India Office, collected and shipped from the Portugese controlled Santarém area of Brazil 70,000 seeds from the wild rubber tree ( Hevea brasiliensis). These were rushed to Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew in London and planted in specially prepared hot-houses. The small number, which survived and became seedlings, were taken in 1877 to Ceylon and later to Malaysia and other countries of South-east Asia allowing the establishment of a British controlled Rubber industry. Rubber plantations in Asia were much more efficient and outproduced Brazil. This was because the Asian rubber plantations were organized and well suited for production on a commercial scale whereas in Brazil the process of latex gathering from forest trees remained a difficult extractive process: rubber tappers worked natural rubber groves in the southern Amazon forest, and rubber tree densities were almost always low, as a consequence of high natural forest diversity. Moreover, experiments in cultivating rubber trees in plantations in the Amazon showed them to be vulnerable to South American rubber tree leaf blight fungus and other diseases and pests. Thus Wickham has been accused of dooming the Amazonian rubber boom. In fact, in Brazil, Wickham is labeled as a "bio-pirate" for his role in stealing the rubber seeds that broke the Brazilian monopoly. In 1876, no Brazilian law would have prevented Wickham's collection of the seeds, but it is believed by many that he may have misrepresented his cargo as dead botanical material destined for the herbarium in order to obtain an export license in Belém.

1877 London Times Venus rescue expedition fails to return.
Edison's Phonograph
Thomas Edison invents the phonograph. This was Edison's favorite invention. He sponsored the Edison Phonograph Polka to help popularize the new device. The first reproduced phrase, “hello,” was recorded on a telephone repeater, but Edison invented the more sophisticated phonograph (record player) the same year. Sound passed through the horn (not shown) into the central mouthpiece. This caused a diaphragm to vibrate. The diaphragm’s stylus created indentations on a thin sheet of tinfoil that was wrapped around a revolving drum. The device was arranged so that a second stylus and diaphragm could be attached to play back the recording.
After the development of Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism, several experiments were performed to prove the existence of ether and its motion relative to the Earth. The most famous and successful was the one now known as the Michelson-Morley experiment, performed by Albert Michelson (1852-1931) and Edward Morley (1838-1923) in 1887.
Michelson Interferometer

It had long been posited that the ether filled the whole universe and was a stationary frame of reference, which was rigid to electromagnetic waves but completely permeable to matter. Hooke endorsed the idea of the existence of the ether in his work Micrographia (1665), and several other philosophers of the 17th century, including Huygens, did the same. At the time of Maxwell's mathematical studies of electromagnetism, ether was believed to be the propagation medium and was imbued with physics properties such as permeability and permittivity. From this theory it follows that it should appear to be moving from the perspective of an observer on the sun-orbiting Earth. As a result, light would sometimes travel in the same direction of the ether, and others times in the opposite direction. Thus, the idea was to measure the speed of light in different directions in order to measure speed of the ether relative to Earth.
Michelson and Morley built a Michelson interferometer, which essentially consists of a light source, a half-silvered glass plate, two mirrors, and a telescope. The mirrors are placed at right angles to each other and at equal distance from the glass plate, which is obliquely oriented at an angle of 45° relative to the two mirrors. In the original device, the mirrors were mounted on a rigid base that rotates freely on a basin filled with liquid mercury in order to reduce friction.
Michelson and Morley were able to measure the speed of light by looking for interference fringes between the light which had passed through the two perpendicular arms of their apparatus. These would occur since the light would travel faster along an arm if oriented in the "same" direction as the ether was moving, and slower if oriented in the opposite direction. Since the two arms were perpendicular, the only way that light would travel at the same speed in both arms and therefore arrive simultaneous at the telescope would be if the instrument were motionless with respect to the ether. If not, the crests and troughs of the light waves in the two arms would arrive and interfere slightly out of synchronization, producing a diminution of intensity.
The British Royal Society's 2nd expedition to Mercury, led by Sir Basil Throckmorton drove deep into the Forbidding Desert on a specially insulated Mercurian exploratory aerial flyer, claiming vast tracts of land along the equator for the British Empire.

14 July, As anti-Terran sentiment grows amongst the Martian population of Idaeus Fons, riots break out when a mob of Martians attacked a Bastille Day celebration. Six Frenchmen died in the fighting, and much property was damaged. Tje French Consul demanded a full apology and reparations from the King. When he refused, the French declared war.

November, Five French regiments landed, near Idaeus Fons on Mars, and shattered the city's army in three battles. The French compelled King Lotmar to step down in favour of his nephew Akvan. Several nobles were imprisoned and their lands turned over to the French as compensation.

In 1877 Stanley made the first complete traverse of the Iruri River, whose waters flow some 800 miles before joining the Congo in the vicinity of present-day Kisangani. By the time he abandoned the river to go directly for Lake Edward, fifty-two of his men were so crippled by leg ulcers and malnutrition, that he had to leave them on the riverbank at a place he named Starvation Camp.
First British Protestant missionaries arrive in the Buganda Kingdom and begin converting the Africans to their brand of Christianity.
"Granola" introduced by James Harvey Kellogg, renamed to avoid being sued by Jackson. Kellogg incorporated a rolling process to flake the grain, making it more edible.


German Ether Dirigible lands on Venus and discovers fate of the first three expeditions.
Swan and Edison Independently Invent the Light Bulb. Joseph Swan, a British chemist and inventor, and Thomas Alva Edison, an American inventor, are credited with the invention of the electric light bulb, in 1878 and 1879 respectively. Swan constructed a light bulb by using carbon wire within a vacuum bulb; Edison produced the same invention a year later, but filed a patent. Edison sued Swan, believing him to have copied his idea. As part of the settlement of the action, they formed the Edison and Swan United Electric Light Company in 1883.
March 3, The Preliminary Treaty of San Stefano was a treaty between Russia and the Ottoman Empire signed at the end of the Russo-Turkish War, 1877–78. It was signed at San Stefano (now Yes,ilköy), a village west of Istanbul, by Count Nicholas Pavlovich Ignatiev and Alexander Nelidov on behalf of the Russian Empire and Foreign Minister Safvet Pasha and Ambassador to Germany Sadullah Bey on behalf of the Ottoman Empire. 3 March, the day the Treaty of San Stefano was signed, is the national holiday of the Republic of Bulgaria

King Lotmar, deposed ruler of Idaeus Fons, signed a treaty accepting French military protection and guidance in foreign affairs. Seperate courts for French citizens are set up, and a reduced tariff was set uo for goods brought in on French ether flyers.

April 8, the Criminal Investigation Department of the Metropolitan Police was founded by Howard Vincent. He was replaced by James Monro in 1884 and in 1888 Robert Anderson took charge after Monro's resignation. Initially Vincent was directly responsible to the Home Secretary, but since 1888 the CID has come under the authority of the Commissioner. Vincent inherited a small body of detectives in Scotland Yard, with others in the Divisions under the command of Divisional Superintendents. His new Department proposed for the first time the formal establishment of permanent Divisional Detective sections who would liaise with the central Branch at Scotland Yard. The 60 Divisional Detective patrols and 20 Special Patrols commanded by 159 sergeants and 15 Detective Inspectors would be an improvement on the occasional plain clothes or 'winter patrols' of two working on a monthly shift system in the Divisions. At Scotland Yard the old Detective Branch was remodelled with one Superintendent (Williamson) commanding 3 Chief Inspectors and 20 Inspectors, and an office staff of six Sergeants and constables. The CID were paid slightly more than uniformed police, and could also claim a number of allowances. In 1883 Vincent set up the Special Irish Branch, which, as Special Branch, would become the first of the specialized squads and units spun off from the CID.
June 13-July 13, The Treaty of Berlin was the final Act of the Congress of Berlin, by which the United Kingdom, Austria-Hungary, France, Germany, Italy, Russia and the Ottoman government under Sultan Hamid revised the Treaty of San Stefano signed on March 3 of the same year. The Treaty provided for an autonomous Bulgarian principality comprising Moesia and the region of Sofia. Most of Thrace was included in the autonomous region of Eastern Rumelia, whereas the rest of Thrace along with the whole of Macedonia was returned under the sovereignty of the Ottomans.
British forces marched through the Khyber Pass to launch an offensive against the Afghans in the Second Afghan War (1878-79). It was at Ali Masjid that Sir Neville Chamberlains friendly mission to the amir Shere Ali was stopped in 1878, thus causing the second Afghan War; and on the outbreak of that war Ali Masjid was captured by Sir Samuel Browne; The treaty which closed the war in May 1879 left the Khyber tribes under British control. From that time the pass was protected by jezailchis drawn from the Afridi tribe, who were paid a subsidy by the British government.
September 12, Cleopatra's Needle erected on the north bank of the River Thames at Victoria Embankment in London. This ancient Egyptian obelisk had been given to Britain by the Turkish Viceroy of Egypt, Mohammed Ali, in 1819, although it was not until 1877, when engineer John Dixon built an iron cylindrical pontoon to tow it out to sea, that it arrived in Britain, where it was erected on the north bank of the River Thames at Victoria Embankment, London. It is now believed that Cleopatra’s Needle was originally erected at Heliopolis in Egypt around 1475 BC.
The first Diplodocus skeleton is found at Como Bluff, Wyoming.

A German expedition spends six months exploring the Mercurian World river.

In 1878 representatives of the Colonial Office, the Royal Navy, the Royal Mail and the Army met at the Prince Consort's Library in Aldershot, to discuss the growing problem of communications between the Red Planet and Earth. All four institutions recognised the need for a fast, secure and regular method of communication and personnel transfer between the two planets. After a few days of consultations, in an uncommon show of inter-service unity they devised the Ether Dispatch Service. This service was to consist of a large number of small, but very fast, Ether Flyers shuttling between Earth and Mars. So acute was the need for this service that within the year the necessary budgets had been found and Her Majesty had given the service its Royal Charter as well.

First modern bathymetric map completed after studies in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean.
In 1878, Stanley (who had found Livingstone some years earlier) visited Mombasa and flew to Lake Victoria in an aerial flyer, circumnavigating Lake Victoria from the air.


January 11, Anglo-Zulu War broke out between Britain and the Zulus, and signalled the end of the Zulus as an independent nation. It had complex beginnings, some bad decisions and bloody battles that caused the British to engage earlier than they intended, but played out a common story of colonialism.

Warburton has controlled the Khyber, and for the greater part of that time secured its safety.

1 May, the first of the Town Class of Ether Dispatch Flyers, the Farnborough, was launched from Her Majesty's Ether Dispatch Service's newly built shipyard, cum Headquarters, next to the Royal Ethereal Research Establishment in Farnborough. Under the command of the newly promoted Admiral Sefton Inwood, Her Majesty's Ether Dispatch Flyer Farnborough, completed her 10 days of trials without a hitch , and began her maiden flight to Mars. This was completed in 43 days, a new record as the Farnborough achieved her designed average speed of 5 million miles per day. Inspired by the success of the Farnborough's first flight she was joined within the year by her sister Flyers, the Aldershot and the Portsmouth.

April 3, Sofia, liberated from the Ottoman Empire by Russian troops, was named the capital of Bulgaria.
The British constructed a road through the Khyber Pass.
A revolt flared up on the frontier region and the valleys of Khyber started vibrating with the echoes of war. British forces occupy Khyber Pass. From 1879 onward, Colonel R.
April 29, Alexander Joseph of Battenberg (April 5, 1857 - November 17, 1893) elected Prince Alexander I of Bulgaria, reigned from April 29, 1879 to September 7, 1886).
July 4, The Battle of Ulundi, South Africa took place at the Zulu capital of Ulundi and proved to be the decisive battle that finally broke the military power of the Zulu nation.
3rd September, British legation in Kabul massacred. Lieutenant Walter Hamilton, an Irishman of 22 years, was awarded the Victoria Cross and, with the ending of the first phase of the war, given command of the small party of Queen’s Own Guides Cavalry and Infantry that escorted Cavagnari to Kabul. On 3rd September 1879 mutinous Afghan troops from the Herati regiments, scorning their western colleagues who had lost the war to the British and Indians, stormed the Residency in the Bala Hissar in Kabul and killed Cavagnari and his escort of Guides after a ferocious battle. Hamilton is commemorated by a statue in Dublin.
Germany declares Alsace-Lorraine to be an integral part of the German Empire. Central administration was transferred to Strasbourg and placed in the hands of an imperial governor-general instead of the chancellor of the Reich.
Oct 7, The Dual Alliance is struck between Germany and Austria-Hungary. Not enthusiastic about the alliance and feeling it may offend the Russia that had stood by Prussia, Wilhelm I commented upon signing: "Thinking of what it means I feel like a traitor."
Radical Egyptian elements depose Ismail, the Khedive of Egypt. He is succeeded by Tewfik.
The French Panama Canal Company is organized and headed by Ferdinand de Lesseps.
Ute Indian Uprising at the White River agency in 1879 in which Indian agent Nathan Meeker and other agency employees were murdered, his wife and daughter and another woman, abducted. This "incident," as the contemporary Utes called it, provided the excuse for Governor Frederick Pitkin and other prominent Denver citizens to demand removal of the Utes from Colorado. "The Utes must go," was their rallying cry. What provoked the White River Utes to take up arms was that Meeker, a sincere but unwise Fourierien socialist, he was the principal founder of the Union Colony at Greeley, pushed the Indians too far in his zeal to make model farmers out of these nomadic, horse-loving Indians. The last straw came when Meeker plowed up Ute Johnson's pony pasture and racetrack in Powell Park near the agency headquarters (west of the town of Meeker) as a punitive act to show who was boss.

A committee investigates the feasibility of completing the Analytical Engine and concludes that it is possible even now that Babbage is dead. The project is completed by Imperial Business Machines (IBM).

King Leopold II or Belgium hired the famous explorer Henry Morton Stanley to establish a colony in the Congo region.
October 21, the first successful test of Edison's carbon filament based incandescent light bulb or incandescent lamp, ; it lasted 13.5 hours). Thomas Edison discovers incandescent light which is a source of artificial light that works by incandescence, in which an electric current passes through a thin filament, heating it and causing it to emit light. The "bulb" is the glass enclosure around the filament that often contains a vacuum or is filled with a low-pressure noble gas to prevent the filament from burning out due to evaporation at the high temperature., radically improving dynamos and generators, discovers a system of distribution, regulation, and measurement of electric current-switches, fuses, sockets, and meters.
Sir Basil Throckmorton's Third Expedition to Mercury circumnavigated the planet by following the course of the World River in his aerial flyer. The expedition also undertook several side trips into the frigidity of the Dark Side.
Louis Pasteur grows the fowl cholera bacillus in culture. Returning to his Paris laboratory after a vacation, he inoculates chickens with the aged culture and discovers that the weakened bacillus does not cause disease and that it creates immunity in the chickens to more virulent strains of cholera..

28 December 1879, The Tay Bridge Disaster. When the first Tay Rail Bridge, which crossed the Firth of Tay between Dundee and Wormit in Scotland, collapsed during a violent storm while a train was passing over it. The bridge was designed by the noted railway engineer Sir Thomas Bouch, using a lattice grid that combined wrought and cast iron. During a violent storm on the evening of 28 December 1879, the centre section of the bridge, known as the "High Girders", collapsed, taking with it a train that was running on its single track. All 75 people on the train were killed. The total number was only established by a meticulous examination of ticket sales, some from as far away as King's Cross.Of the 60 known victims, only 46 were found, with two bodies not being recovered until February 1880.


1880 - 1900 Scramble for Africa and the planets Name given to the division of Africa, Mars, Venus and mercury into spheres of influence by the European powers—notably Great Britain, Germany, France, Belgium, and Portugal—and the formalization of the colonization of these areas. The Berlin Conference had been called in 1884 to define the spheres of influence of the European powers, and set the rules for the further colonization of Earth and the Solar System. The Berlin Act of 1885 introduced the doctrine of effective occupation.
On the first day of the new year of 1880, on board a steam launch standing of the mouth of the Rio Grande, de Lesseps young daughter Fernanda dug the first shovel of sand into a champagebox and the Panama Canal was symbolically begun.
Edison continued to improve his incandescent lamp design and by 1880 had the patent for a lamp that could last over 1200 hours using a carbonized bamboo filament. Edison and his team did not find this commercially viable filament until more than 6 months after Edison filed the patent application.
Germany establishes first colony on Venus.
Disraeli steps down as British Prime minister and is succeeded by Gladstone.
Second War of the Parhoon Succession results in establishment of a British crown colony on Mars.
Princess Christina Station established by Great Britain on Mercury. Situated at the Mercurian North Pole, its scientists study the Sun and the local Mercurian environment. This small outpost of the British Empire is home to a faculty of 20 scientists, 50 servants and workers, six government officials, and a score of Royal Marines. Royal Navy ether flyers call on the outpost at irregular intervals, and a supply ship delivers equipment, provisions, and mail every six months. Since the establishment of Princess Christiana Station the British Royal Society has supported a number of small expeditions of scientific and economic importance within 1,000 miles of the Mercurian North Pole.
France annexes Tahiti.
Pacific War breaks out: Chile vs. Peru and Bolivia. Drags on into 1884.
Boers of Transvaal declare their independence from Britain. A republic is established with Krueger as president.
Garfield elected President of the United States.
Carnegie develops the first large steel furnance.
Electricity replaces gaslights on New York streets.
Heidelberg expedition returns from Venus.
First Russian expedition lands on Venus.
First Italian expedition lands on Venus.
The Great Indian Peninsula railway network has a route mileage of about 14,500 km (9,000 miles), mostly radiating inward from the three major port cities of Bombay, Madras and Calcutta.
Canned fruits and meats widely available for the first time in stores.

Channel Tunnel, under the direction of Sir Edward Watkin, Chairman of the South Eastern Railway, a new shaft (No. 1 shaft) was sunk at Abbot's Cliff, between Dover and Folkestone with a horizontal gallery being driven along the cliff, 10 feet above the high water mark. This seven foot diameter pilot tunnel was eventually to be enlarged to standard gauge with a connection to the South Eastern Railway.

Fu Manchu puts into motion his grandiose plot to falsify scientists' deaths & conscript them into his service; he will continue to use these methods for at least sixty years.

Thomas Edison discovers the "Edison Effect," the fundamental principle of electronics.
Airborne cameras placed onaerial flyers, kites and Ether Flyers.
John Milne invents the modern seismograph for measuring earthquakes waves.
December 16, the First Boer War also known as the Transvaal War, was fought from 1880 until March 23, 1881. It was the first clash between the British and the Transvaal Boers. It was precipitated by Sir Theophilus Shepstone who annexed the South African Republic (Transvaal Republic) for the British in 1877. The British consolidated their power over most of the colonies of South Africa in 1879 after the Anglo-Zulu War. The Boers protested and in December 1880 they revolted. The war began on December 16, 1880 with shots fired by Transvaal Boers at Potchefstroom after Transvaal formally declared independence from Great Britain. It led to the action at Bronkhorstspruit on December 20 1880, where the Boers ambushed and destroyed a British army convoy. From December 22 1880 to January 6 1881, British army garrisons all over the Transvaal became besieged. The Boers were dressed in their everyday farming clothes, which were a neutral or earthtone khaki clothing, whereas the British uniforms were still bright scarlet red, a stark contrast to the African landscape, which enabled the Boers, being expert marksmen, to easily snipe at British troops from a distance.


By the end of January 1881, the first group of French engineers of the Compagnie Universelle du Canal Interoceanique arrived at Colon and the great task of construction commenced. In the years to follow men and machinery poured into Panama to confront the geographical obstacles of the Isthmus: the backbone of the continental divide at the Culebra Cut and the mighty Chagres river.At this time the French stood at the pinnacle of 19th century engineering. Their finest engineers and machinery were sent to work. For 8 years a valiant and determined effort was made on the isthmus. The climate, with its torrential rains, incessant heat and fatal disease, took its toll. Financial mismanagement, stock failure and bad publicity eventually forced the failure of the company.
January 28, the Boers of the Transvaal repulse the British at Laing's Nek and inflict a stunning defeat on them at Majuba Hill. Laing's Nek is a pass in the foothills of the Drakensberg mountains on the Newcastle–Standerton road in Natal, South Africa where the British were attempting to fight their way through the Drakensberg range to relieve their besieged garrisons in the Transvaal. The British Natal Field Force, commanded by Major-General Sir George Pomeroy Colley, numbered around 1,216 officers and men, including about 150 cavalry of the Mounted Squadron. The Boers, under the command of Commandant-General Joubert had about 2,000 men in the area, with at least 400 fortifying the heights around Laing's Nek.
The battle began at around 9:25 hours with a heavy bombardment with four 9-pound guns and two 7-pound guns of the British Naval Brigade pounding the Boer positions on Table Mountain. Ten minutes later, the main British force, made up of the 58th Regiment, went forward and had difficulty advancing over the broken ground towards the summit. Further down the line, the Mounted Squadron made a charge against the Boer positions on nearby Brownlow's Kop. But, on reaching the summit, the British cavalry were fired upon by a line of entrenched Boers on the reverse slope and suffered many casualties, forcing them to withdraw.
By 10:30, with their threat to their flank removed, the Boers moved to attack the 58th Regiment still advancing on Table Mountain where at 11:00, at reaching the top of the summit, the British were fired upon by concealed Boers in trenches just 160 yards away and suffered even more casualties, including both commanding officers, Major Hingeston and Colonel Deane being killed. While this was happening, a small party of Boers actually advanced from their positions on the lower slopes of nearby Majuba Hill and engaged the Naval Brigade near the British camp at Mount Prospect. Return rifle fire from the British kept the Boers back. By 11:10, two companies of the 3/60th Rifles moves up Table Mountain to cover the retreat of the 58th Regiment and by noon, the battle was over.
The British lost 84 killed, 113 wounded, and 2 captured during what was perceived as a fiasco. Most of the casualties were in the 58th Regiment with 74 killed and 101 wounded, around 35% of their total strength. The Boers reported their losses at 14 killed and 27 wounded.
April 5, in the Treaty of Pretoria, Britain recognizes the independent Transvaal Republic.
HMS Aphid launched at Syrtis Major.

Channel Tunnel, after Welsh miners had bored 800 feet of No 1 shaft shaft, a second shaft (No 2) was begun at Shakespeare Cliff in February 1881. This tunnel was started under the foreshore heading towards a mid channel meeting with the French pilot tunnel. Both tunnels were bored using a compressed air boring machine invented and built by Colonel Fredrick Beaumont MP. Beaumont had been involved with the Channel Tunnel Company since 1874 and had successfully bored a number of tunnels without the use of explosives and 3 ½ times faster than manual labour. It was not however Beaumont's boring machine that was used. Captain Thomas English of Dartford, Kent patented a far superior rotary boring machine in 1880 capable of cutting nearly half a mile a month and it was this not Beaumont's machine that was used for tunnelling under the channel. The tunnel was credited to Beaumont in 'The Engineer' magazine and despite letters of protest from English the editor refused to correct the mistake and Beaumont did nothing to clarify the situation. The Channel Tunnel Company expected the pilot tunnel to be completed by 1886. Sir Edward Watkin applied to the government for public funds to complete the 11 mile section to meet the French mid channel. These funds were not forthcoming so Sir Edward formed a new company, The Submarine Continental Railway Company that took over the shafts and headings from the South Eastern Railway in 1882. The company prepared a new Bill to put before Parliament but by now the government were getting worried about the military implications of a link to Europe and a new military commission heard evidence from Lieutenant General Sir Garnet Wolseley that the tunnel might be "calamitous for England", he added that "No matter what fortifications and defences were built, there would always be the peril of some continental army seizing the tunnel exit by surprise." However, assurances from Sir Edward that the defence against invasion was adequate by flooding the tunnel, cutting of the ventilation and forcing smoke into the tunnel and cutting the cables on the lifts in the shaft thereby trapping any invader at the bottom, the commission was convinced.

March 13, Tsar Alexander II assassinated in St. Petersburg by Ignacy Hryniewiecki after Nikolai Rysakov had attempted the assassination but missed the tsar. A third bomber in the crowd, Ivan Emelyanov stood ready, clutching a briefcase containing a bomb that would be used if the other two bombs, and bombers, failed.

Sherlock Holmes meets Dr. John H. Watson and the pair take up residence in Baker Street.
Flogging abolished in the British Army and Navy.
July 2, U.S. President James A. Garfield was shot. Hedied several weeks later on September 19, Chester Arthur succeeds him.
The Bey of Tunis accepts status as a French protectorate.
The first political parties are formed in Japan.
Serbia forms an alliance with Austria to strengthen the government's hand against internal unrest.
The Three Emperor's League is formed.
The first cola-flavored beverage introduced for sale in the USA.


March 19 (Saint Joseph day), Bishop Mr. Urquinaona placed the foundation stone of the Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família in Barcelona.Prince Milan Obrenovich of Serbia proclaims himself king.

March 24, Robert Koch announced in Berlin that he had isolated and grown the tubercle bacillus, which he believed to be the cause of all forms of tuberculosis.

Triple Alliance formed between Germany, Italy, and Austria-Hungary.
First German colonial governor takes residence at Venusstadt.
1882 British Occupation of Egypt. During the summer, an international conference of the European powers met in Istanbul, but no agreement was reached. The Ottoman sultan Abdul Hamid boycotted the conference and refused to send troops to Egypt. Eventually, Britain decided to act alone. The French withdrew their naval squadron from Alexandria, and in
25 April, French forces under Captain Henri Rivière seized the citadel of Hanoi, the capital of Tonkin. Rivière was killed while clearing Black Flags from the Red River delta in the spring of 1883, provoking a groundswell of pro-war sentiment in France.
20 May, The Triple Alliance is signed between Italy, Austria-Hungary, and Germany with the express purpose of stopping Italy from attacking Austria-Hungary in the event of war with Russia.
June 18, Bismarck's Russian Reinsurance Treaty is signed with Russia was an attempt to avoid the seemingly inevitable war between Austria-Hungary and Russia.

July 1882, the British fleet began bombarding Alexandria. Following the burning of Alexandria and its occupation by British marines, the British installed the khedive in the Ras at Tin Palace. The khedive obligingly declared Urabi a rebel and deprived him of his political rights. Urabi in turn obtained a religious ruling, a fatwa, signed by three Al Azhar shaykhs, deposing Tawfiq as a traitor who brought about the foreign occupation of his country and betrayed his religion. Urabi also ordered general conscription and declared war on Britain. Thus, as the British army was about to land in August, Egypt had two leaders: the khedive, whose authority was confined to British-controlled Alexandria, and Urabi, who was in full control of Cairo and the provinces. In August Sir Garnet Wolsley and an army of 20,000 invaded the Suez Canal Zone. Wolsley was authorized to crush the Urabi forces and clear the country of rebels. The decisive battle was fought at Al-Tall al-Kabir (September 13, 1882).
25 June, Frederick Gustavus Burnaby became the first man to cross the English Channel in a steam-powered aerial vessel, the Vivian.
September 13, The Urabi forces were routed and the capital captured. The nominal authority of the khedive was restored, and the British occupation of Egypt, which was to last for seventy-two years, had begun. Urabi was captured, and he and his associates were put on trial. An Egyptian court sentenced Urabi to death, but through British intervention the sentence was commuted to banishment to Ceylon. Britain's military intervention in 1882 and its extended, if attenuated, occupation of the country left a legacy of bitterness among the Egyptians that would not be expunged until 1956 when British troops were finally removed from the country.

September 13, British Field Marshal Garnet Joseph Wolseley, 1st Viscount Wolseley, completed hismost brilliant campaign which involved seizing the Suez Canal and, after a night march, surprising and defeating 'Urabi Pasha at Al-Tall al-Kabir (September 13, 1882).

September 14, British troops lead by General Wolseley reach and occupy Cairo, Egypt.
Meepsoor and Moeris Lacus accept status as British protectorates.
Belgian legion involved in frequent fighting in the Coprates Valley on Mars.
Bank of Japan founded.


Paul Krueger elected president of the South African Republic.
French troops control Tunis.

Russian intervention in Hecates Lacus civil war leads to Treaty of Cebrenia recognizing Russia's "special interests" in the region. The treaty allows Russia to take it's first step towards establishing a Martian colony. The treaty established spheres of influence on Mars, dividing the planet between the European powers. The Tsar, eager to enjoy the benefits of Martian trade, and looking for a place even more remote than Siberia to send enemies of the state, sent envoys to the city of Hecate Lacus immediately after the treaty went into effect and a Russian colony is established in the city soon after.

British fight aerial campaign to supress pirates in the Aerian Hills of Mars.During this campaign the term"Red Captain" first gained widespread usage. Because a number of European aerial flyer captain with their own vessels, mostly merchant ships, who were operating in the area of the British colony were issued letters of marque and reprisal (letter of marque for short) by the colonial governor in Syrtis Major. This action was taken as a cheap means of supplementing the small aerial squadron then available to Britain on Mars. In addition to the letters of marque the colonial governor also made available a number of surplus guns to arm the Red Captains' merchant ships. The term "Red Captain" was originally coined by the Aerian pirates to refer to these European privateers that fought against them. Although now the term has come to mean any Earthman who captains his own ship and who is, or has been, engaged as a privateer. These days most Red Captains fly dedicated fighting vessels, that may occaisionally haul cargo to pay the bills between wars, rather than the original converted merchantmen supplementing their income.
Rebellion in the Sudan grows.

May 24, in a brilliant feat of 19th-century engineering, the Brooklyn Bridge, designed by civil engineer John Augustus Roebling, spanning the East River from Brooklyn to Manhattan Island in New York City—opened this day in 1883.

June 5, The "Orient Express" (Paris to Istanbul railroad) makes its first run.

August 25, the Hué treaty, ceding Tonkin to France as a protectorate, was signed between the Emperor of Annam and France. China rejected this treaty, and moved forces into Tonkin province. Although neither China nor France declared war on the other, combat operations began in the autumn of 1883. French riverine forces seized the citadels of Bac Ninh, Son Tay and Tuyen Quang.

August 26- August 27, The volcanic island of Krakatau, situated in south-western Indonesia in the Sunda Strait, was almost completely destroyed by a volcanic eruption on August 26-27, 1883. The volcanic activity had been strong since May of that year. The earthquake resulted in an explosion that was heard about 4,800 km (3,000 mi) away, and in tidal waves 35 m (120 ft) high; about 36,000 people in coastal Sumatra and Java perished in the disaster, and atmospheric changes produced by the earthquake were still visible three years later. The pressure wave generated by the colossal fourth, and final, explosion radiated out from Krakatoa at 1,086 km/h (675 mph). It was so powerful that it ruptured the eardrums of sailors on ships in the Sunda Strait,and caused a spike of more than two and half inches of mercury (ca 85 hPa) in pressure gauges attached to gasometers in the Batavia gasworks, sending them off the scale.The pressure wave radiated across the globe and was recorded on barographs all over the world, which continued to register it up to 5 days after the explosion. Barographic recordings show that the shock-wave from the final explosion reverberated around the globe 7 times in total. Ash was propelled to an estimated height of 80 km (50 mi). The eruptions diminished rapidly after that point, and by the morning of 28 August, Krakatoa was silent. Small eruptions, mostly of mud, continued into October 1883.

October, An extensive article, replete with engravings and interviews, is published in Harper's New Monthly Magazine extolling the panoramic beauty of the twilight setting of Princess Christiana Station. In the words of the editor, "Truly, and at last, the Sun never sets on the British Empire!"


February 1, The first of 10 volumes of the Oxford English Dictionary was published in London, the final volume being published April 19, 1928.

Major-General Charles Gordon reaches Khartoum as governor of the Sudan. The Mahdi refuses to negotiate and brings Khartoum under seige.
Major-General Charles Gordon (Gordon Pasha) was one of the last of the fabled Victorian eccentrics. Short, slight, sunburnt, he seemed to prance on his tiptoes everywhere he went, boundless boyish energy shining from his bright blue eyes. He had fought with distinction in the Crimea; but was far too unorthodox for the steady climb to the top in the British army. In stead he had taken service with other governments, with most of whom he had eventually quarrelled.
Gordon had already gained international fame for his military successes in China during the Taiping Rebellion, where he led the emperor's army. As a result of his daredevil exploits on behalf of the Manchu dynasty in the Taiping rebellion - in which he had shown himself a supreme leader of irregular troops - he had been universally acclaimed as "Chinese" Gordon. Whatever spare time Gordon’s worldly battles allowed had been devoted to the Bible, and to good works among the poor. From his incessant readings of the former he had evolved his own mystical fatalistic approach to Christianity.
He was probably the most brilliant commando officer alive, and at the same time a man of passionate feeling for the underdog. For the task of organizing an abject retreat, of unsparingly abandoning those unable to join it, no one could possibly have been more unsuited. Gordon was no stranger to the Sudan. He had spent nearly six whirlwind years there, in the service of the Khedive Ismail. He had been first, Governor of the southernmost province, Equatoria, where he mapped the Nile to within 60 miles of its source. But Gordon’s compulsive activity had allowed him not a moments rest, and the terrible climate had struck at his health. In a fit of depression he had given up, writing to his sister “I have a sort of wish I could get rid of Col. Gordon”.
Within a few months he was back, this time as Governor-General of the entire Sudan. He refused to accept more than half his £6,000 salary; and as before he drove himself to the limit of his strength against the cruelty and corruption around him. In Khartoum his trim white-clad figure, ceaselessly trotting to and fro, red fez above blazing blue eyes, became for the wretched native population the hope of a better lot. Out on the camel-tracks Gordon became equally familiar as he rode from end to end of the country, grappling with the slavers, rooting out venal officials, appointing young Europeans, his faithful disciples, to posts of responsibility. His appointment at the height of the crisis created by the Mahdi was partly due to the aura of romance that still surrounded him.
February 1, 1st Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is published.
March 13 - The siege of Khartoum, Sudan begins (ends on January 26, 1885). Although the grip of the Mahdi was closing in, the city could still breathe. It had 8,000 defenders, 6 months food, and a flotilla of river steamers. Runners could still get through to Egypt. Gordon himself could easily have slipped out to safety. Now that the outlying garrisons were beyond help it was his duty, in the eyes of the British government for him to do so; but nothing was further from the mind of Gordon. The civilian and military population of Khartoum were, in the sight of the Lord, his personal responsibility.
April 22, Colchester suffered an earthquake that is estimated to have been 5.2 on the Richter Scale. This is the UK's most destructive.
September, the Sino-French War or Franco-Chinese War was fought between the French Third Republic and Qing Empire. Lasting from September 1884 to June 1885, its underlying cause was the French desire for control of the Red River, which linked Hanoi to the resource-wealthy Yunnan province in China.
Gold is discovered in the Transvaal.
Liam O'Connor in the Fenian Ram makes first attack on British shipping on Mars.
British aerial squadron bombards Shastapash. A few letters of marque were issued by the colonial governor to Red Captains for operations against Liam O'Connor and his ship from 1884 to 1887. However few Red Captains took up these letters of marque as there was very little profit involved in attempting to hunt down a warship with a crack crew using only a converted merchantman.

July 4, The Statue of Liberty was presented to the United States by the French in Paris.

August 1884, at the Battle of Foochow, in less than 30 minutes French forces utterly destroyed the anchored and inferior Chinese naval fleet that had been built, ironically, under the supervision of Prosper Gicquel, a French citizen in China. In Tonkin, however, the monsoon season precluded offensive operations by the French, allowing the Chinese to advance to the edge of the Red River delta. During this operation, the Chinese laid siege to the fortress of Tuyen Quang, leading to its celebrated defense by a battalion of the French Foreign Legion.
Completion of what is now the London Subway Circle Line.
Germany occupies South-West Africa.
Grover Cleveland is elected President of the United States.
End of September, A relief force under the command of General Sir garnet Wolseley left Cairo to relieve General Gordon who had been trapped in Khartoun for 7 months by the Sudanese Mahdists. The relief column travelled along the Nile towards Khartoum,a distance of 800 miles. General Wolseley sent a 1800 strong Camel Corp under the command of General Sir Herbert Stewart, directly across country where the nile bends to the east. Frederick Gustavus Burnaby organises an aerial squadron to assist Woleseley's army in its attempt to relieve General Gordon at Khartoum in the Sudan.
November 15, the Berlin conference of 14 colonial powers partitions Africa.
In 1884 at the request of Portugal, German chancellor Otto von Bismark called together the major western powers of the world to negotiate questions and end confusion over the control of Africa. Bismark appreciated the opportunity to expand Germany's sphere of influence over Africa and desired to force Germany's rivals to struggle with one another for territory.
At the time of the conference, 80% of Africa remained under traditional and local control. What ultimately resulted was a hodgepodge of geometric boundaries that divided Africa into fifty irregular countries. This new map of the continent was superimposed over the one thousand indigenous cultures and regions of Africa. The new countries lacked rhyme or reason and divided coherent groups of people and merged together disparate groups who really did not get along.
Fourteen countries were represented by a plethora of ambassadors when the conference opened in Berlin on November 15, 1884. The countries represented at the time included Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden-Norway (unified from 1814-1905), Turkey, and the United States of America. Of these fourteen nations, France, Germany, Great Britain, and Portugal were the major players in the conference, controlling most of colonial Africa at the time.
The initial task of the conference was to agree that the Congo River and Niger River mouths and basins would be considered neutral and open to trade. Despite its neutrality, part of the Congo Basin became a personal kingdom for Belgium's King Leopold II and under his rule, over half of the region's population died.
At the time of the conference, only the coastal areas of Africa were colonized by the European powers. At the Berlin Conference the European colonial powers scrambled to gain control over the interior of the continent. The conference lasted until February 26, 1885 - a three month period where colonial powers haggled over geometric boundaries in the interior of the continent, disregarding the cultural and linguistic boundaries already established by the indigenous African population.
Following the conference, the give and take continued. By 1914, the conference participants had fully divided Africa among themselves into fifty countries. Major colonial holdings included:
* Great Britain desired a Cape-to-Cairo collection of colonies and almost succeeded though their control of Egypt, Sudan (Anglo-Egyptian Sudan), Uganda, Kenya (British East Africa), South Africa, and Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana (Rhodesia). The British also controlled Nigeria and Ghana (Gold Coast).
* France took much of western Africa, from Mauritania to Chad (French West Africa) and Gabon and the Republic of Congo (French Equatorial Africa).
* Belgium and King Leopold II controlled the Democratic Republic of Congo (Belgian Congo).
* Portugal took Mozambique in the east and Angola in the west.
* Italy's holdings were Somalia (Italian Somaliland) and a portion of Ethiopia.
* Germany took Namibia (German Southwest Africa) and Tanzania (German East Africa).
* Spain claimed the smallest territory - Equatorial Guinea (Rio Muni).
Japanese make their first landing on Mars.
Charles Algernon Parsons (1854 - )Develops First Practical Steam Turbine. Sir Charles Algernon Parsons, a British engineer, invented the steam turbine, whose first model was connected to a dynamo that generated 7.5 kW of electricity. His patent was licensed and the turbine scaled up shortly after by an American, George Westinghouse.The steam turbine revolutionized the generation of electricity and marine transport. Parsons developed the use of turbo-generators in power stations on land. At sea, he developed steam turbines to drive ships; his prototype vessel Turbinia was capable of 34 knots, a record in 1897. His turbines were supplied to the navy for the development of warship designs and also powered the Lusitania and Mauretania liners of the Cunard Line.
Mark Twain writes "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn".

Professor James Moriaty writes "The Dynamics of an Asteroid" a book which ascends to such rarefied heights of pure mathematics that it is said that there was no man in the scientific press capable of criticizing it.


January 17, at a caravan stop called Abu Klea (63 miles south of Ed damur. The Camel Corp encountered a mahdist force of 10,000 under the Command of Mohammed Ahmed. A desperate hand to hand battle took place on the 17th of January. But the Mahdist forces were repulsed, even though they had broken the British square at a point in the battle. The Mahdist losses were over 1,000 killed compared to the Anglo-Egyptian losses of 168. General Stewarts camel corp fought its way to the Nile and arrived to days later but Stewart had been mortally wounded. The commanded went to Lord Charles Beresford who continued up the Nile and arrived on January 28, but only 48 hours late to save the garrison.
January 26, the Dervish Army captures Khartoum and massacres the garrison. The Egyptian Defenders, weakened beyond further resistance by fear and hunger, had collapsed. Six terrible hours of massacre, rape and looting followed as the shrieking hordes burst through the streets.
Januar 28, Two days after the fall of Khartoum General Wolesely's troops arrived within sight of Khartoum. They could see no flag flying from the Governors palace, and as they neared the town they ran into a tempest of fire. Wolesely, seeking reinforcements for a further campaign against the Mahdi, was curtly told to return; and his expedition retired in some disorder down the Nile. British evacuate the Sudan. Hoever Major-General Charles Gordon himself had already been rescued from Khartoum by Frederick Gustavus Burnaby commanding of the aerial vessel Vivian. Later in the year the Mahdi dies.
February 5, the Congo and the Upper Coprates, Mars become the personal possesions of King Leopold II of Belgium. The Congo Free State and Upper Coprates, where private projects undertaken by the King to extract rubber, ivory and liftwood, which relied on slavery and is held responsible for the deaths of millions of Africans and Martians.
February, a French expeditionary force comprising two brigades marched into Upper Tonkin and captured Lang Son. One brigade then departed to relieve Tuyen Quang, leaving the other isolated at Lang Son. Its commander, seeking to roll back the build-up of offensive power by the Chinese, attacked across the Chinese border and was defeated at the Battle of Zhennan Pass. Following an unsuccessful counter-attack by the Chinese (mainly militia regiments of Zhuang ethnic background under the command of Feng Zicai), the acting French commander hastily abandoned Lang Son on March 28, 1885, news of which brought about the fall of the Jules Ferry government in France. Despite the retreat, the earlier success of ground operations in Tonkin and on Formosa, the Chinese government's lack of will to continue the conflict, and France's overwhelming advantage at sea brought this war to its end.

March 26,the first clash of the Riel Rebellion in Canada took place in Duck Lake, Saskatchewan.

June 9, the treaty ending the Sino-French War was signed, as China acknowledged the Treaty of Hué and gave up its suzerainty over the Empire of Annam. Annam and Tonkin were incorporated into French Indochina soon thereafter.
Germany annexes Tanganyika and Zanzibar, renaming them East Africa.
Great Britain establishes a protectorate over Northern Bechuanaland, the Niger River Region ("Nigeria"), and southern New Guinea.
British troops occupy Port Hamilton, Korea.
King Alfonso XII of Spain dies. Queen Maria Christina becomes regent for her unborn child.
Japan establishes Unebi Station near Euxinus Lacus.
Bulgaria seizes Eastern Rumelia.
Serbia and Trans-Balkania declare war on Bulgaria and Ruritania, but are quickly beaten and withdrawn to prewar boundaries.
November 11, Her Imperial majesty's British Government announced its intention to step up production of aerial gunboats, but at the same time transfer all such vessels currently in service to the Royal Navy.
Posthumous publication of Karl Marx's Das Kaptial.
Russian-Afghan border incident damages Russian Empires image with the Crown.
Thomas Edison discovers a system of wireless induction telegraph between moving trains and stations. He also patented similar systems for ship-to-shore use.
Karl Benz Builds First Petrol-Driven Car. Karl Benz, a German mechanical engineer, is best known for his pioneering work on the development of the internal-combustion engine and the motor car. In 1885 he developed the first motor vehicle powered by an internal-combustion engine. Benz had designed a two-stroke internal-combustion engine in 1878. His vehicle was powered by a 1 kW/1.5 hp engine and was capable of a top speed of 5 kph (3 mph).
The Indian National Congress, the political party that is leading the struggle for the independence of India from the British Empire, was founded in 1885. Initially, it campaigned for limited constitutional reforms.
Charles Aderton invented "Dr Pepper" in Waco, Texas, USA.


January 29th, German mechanical engineer Karl Benz patented the first practical automobile powered by an internal-combustion engine.

Queen Maria Christina gives birth to the future Alfonso XIII.

Geronimo surrenders.

General George Boulanger becomes French war minister.

British Prime Minister Gladstone introduces bill for home rule in Ireland. The bill fails, and Salisbury becomes prime minister. Chamberlain becomes colonial secretary.

HMS Locust, first armored aerial gunboat built on Earth, launched at Portsmouth.

February 24th, the first Channel Tunnel between England and France is opened by Queen Victoria. The Channel Tunnel is the latest marvel of an ingenious age; a railway link between Dover and Calais. On each shore there are stations and railway bridges out to artificial islands, where trains enter the tunnel itself; the bridges are mined and overlooked by the guns of heavily-armed forts, to guard against invasion through the tunnel. Ventilation shafts at intervals lead up to small concrete and brick “islands” supporting tall chimney stacks and warning lights. In mid-Channel, on the Varne bank, a larger artificial island is used for coaling and watering trains, and to give passengers a welcome break from the dust and smoke of the tunnel. Eventually a hotel and docks will be built there. The tunnel itself is dug through the bed of the Channel. Each of the railway lines is carried in a steel pipe, waterproofed with layers of bitumen and pitch, lined with concrete and brick, and reinforced with steel hoops. At intervals the pipes are linked by cross-tunnels, just large enough for a man, which can be used to evacuate a train in an emergency. Unfortunately early fears that the tunnel might be used as a route to invade Britain were correct; a renegade element of the French army which had been planning treachery for many years, and used the opening ceremony as cover for an attack. While the Queen dined in Calais members of the French Foreign Legion were landed on one of the tunnel's ventilation “islands”, a brick and concrete chimney that vents engine smoke, and climbed down to the track. They planned to stop the train in the tunnel and board it, then carry on to Dover, where they would force Her Majesty, the Queen, to perform an unscheduled “inspection” of the fort that guards the British end of the tunnel, and overcome the garrison before they can destroy the tunnel entrance bridge. Once the fort was in French hands they planned signal their main force; several military trains will be brought through the tunnel, securing Dover and Folkestone harbours for a sea-borne invasion fleet, while more troops poured through the tunnel. This assault was foiled through the actions of Sir Peter Arthur and his fellow adventurers who fortuitously amongst those taken hostage, escaping when the train was stopped in the tunnel, and with the help of God rescuing the Queen and foiling the dastardly French scheme. The diplomatic repercusions of this assault kept the tunnel closed until November 1886, when after concessions and reperations were made by the French government, the tunnel was finally opened for use.

The so-called "Mylarkt Incident" (exchange of gunfire between German and British aerial vessels on Mars) begins steady deterioration in Anglo-German relations.

Tower Bridge Schematic
Construction work begins on Tower Bridge in London. It is to be built between 1886 and 1894 at a cost of over £1 million. When complete it will have two Gothic towers and a central drawbridge; this design was governed both by the navigational requirements of ships and barge trains that passed below and by the Gothic style that Parliament demanded on account of its proximity to the Tower of London.
Tower Bridge 1892

The engineer is Sir John Wolfe Barry and the architect Sir Horace Jones, who describe the bridge's exuberant towers as “steel skeletons clothed with stone”. The towers contain both the passenger lifts to the upper pedestrian footway and the hydraulic mechanisms for lifting the bascules of the bridge. These two bascules can swing open for ships to pass in 1 minutes.
Alexander of Bulgaria abdicates after coup. Stephan Stambulov becomes regent.
First meeting of the Indian National Congress.

Dorr E. Felt (1862-1930), of Chicago, makes his "Comptometer". This is the first calculator where the operands are entered merely by pressing keys rather than having to be, for example, dialled in. It is feasible because of Felt's invention of a carry mechanism fast enough to act while the keys return from being pressed.

Dr. John S. Pemberton invented "Coca-Cola" in Atlanta, Georgia. The formula for Coke, whose status as a trade secret has been embellished by company lore, originally contained an uncertain amount of cocaine.

1887 June 23rd, Queen Victoria celebrates her Golden Jubilee.
British besiege and capture the city of Shastapsh.
"Avenel Incident" brings Britain and Oenotria to the brink of war.
Fenian Ram destroyed by British aerial gunboats in the Meroe Highlands, but O'Connor survives and escapes.
Successful aerial campaign waged against High Martian pirates of the Astusapes Highlands, culminating in near-total destruction of Barrovaangian fleet. A significant number of Red Captains, operating under letters of marque took part in these operations.
Prince Ferdinand of Saxe-Coburg elected king of Bulgaria, with Stambulov as prime minister.
General Boulanger attempts coup in Paris, but fails.
France organizes the Union Indo-Chinoise.
Leopold II declares the Lower Coprates a Belgian protectorate.
Construction begins on Tehuantepec Ship Railroad. Designed by James Buchanan Eads (1820 - 1887) this interoceanic railway is designed to span the Isthmus of Tehuantepec which is the shortest distance between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean.
L.L. Zameenhoff devises the language "Esperanto."
Great Britain and Germany agree on a division of East Africa, giving Britain rights to Kenya and Germany rights to German East Africa (Tanzania). Britain takes administrative control of Mombasa.
1888 Royal Geographic Society awards this year's gold medals to Clements Robert Markham for his polar work and Leutnant von Wissmann for his exploration in Central Africa.March 9, Kaiser (emperor) Wilhelm I of Germany dies and is succeeded by his son Fredrick III, who dies in June and is succeeded by his son Wilhelm II. A diplomatic cable from Berlin on the Kaiser's death reads: "Lord abide with us for the evening draws nigh."
Kaiser Wilhelm II
William II, or Kaiser Wilhelm, became Emperor of Germany in 1888. He is shown here in the uniform of the “Death’s head Hussars,” a cavalry regiment.

The so-called "Ripper" murders take place in Whitechapel district of London."Jack the Ripper" is the popular name given to a serial killer who killed a number of prostitutes in the East End of London in 1888. The name originates from a letter written by someone who claimed to be the killer published at the time of the murders. The killings took place within a mile area and involved the districts of Whitechapel, Spitalfields, Aldgate, and the City of London proper. He was also called the Whitechapel Murderer and "Leather Apron". It is unclear just how many women the Ripper killed. It is generally accepted that he killed five, though some have written that he murdered only four while others say seven or more. The public, press, and even many junior police officers believed that the Ripper was responsible for nine slayings. The five that are generally accepted as the work of the Ripper are:
1. Mary Ann (Polly) Nichols, murdered Friday, August 31, 1888.
2. Annie Chapman, murdered Saturday, September 8, 1888.
3. Elizabeth Stride, murdered Sunday, September 30, 1888.
4. Catharine Eddowes, also murdered that same date.
5. Mary Jane (Marie Jeanette) Kelly, murdered Friday, November 9, 1888.
Besides these five there are good reasons to believe that the first victim was really Martha Tabram who was murdered Tuesday, August 7, 1888, and there are important considerations for questioning whether Stride was a Ripper victim. As to the actual number of women that the Ripper killed, there is no simple answer. In a sentence: at least four, probably six, just possibly eight. All five of these listed plus Tabram were prostitutes and were killed between early August and early November 1888. All but Tabram and Kelly were killed outdoors and there is no evidence to suggest that any of them knew each other. They varied in both age and appearance. Most were drunk or thought to be drunk at the time they were killed.
The Financial Times first published in London.
King Lobenfula of the Matabele accepts British protectorate status and grants Cecil Rhodes mining rights.
Sarawak accepts status of British protectorate.
General Boulanger is retired from the French Army and elected to the Chamber of Deputies.
Anarchist Ravachol escapes from Prison.
Benjamin Harrison elected president of the United States.
Johnstown flood takes place.
Sidney Boynton, United States Ambassador to the Oenotrian Court, is kidnapped by Barrovaangian King Hattabranx, but he is later rescued by British gunboats. First recorded successful assault on a large kraag.
Pedro II, emperor of Brazil, abolishes slavery.
1888 John Dunlop Patents Pneumatic Bicycle Tyre. Scottish inventor John Dunlop is best known for his invention and commercial development of the pneumatic tyre. In 1888 he patented a pneumatic bicycle tyre that consisted of an inflatable rubber inner tube covered by linen cloth with an outer rubber tread, which was fixed to the wheel by means of a rubber solution. Robert William Thomson had patented the tyre as early as 1845, but Dunlop was able to exploit it commercially because of the introduction of the motor car.
Royal charter protects the Imperial British East Africa Company (IBEAC), founded by Sir William Mackinnon, 1st Baronet (13 March 1823 - 22 June 1893) to develop trade in Africa. The IBEAC oversaw an area of approximately 246,800 mi² (639,209 km²) situated along the eastern coast of Africa, its centre being at about 39° East longitude and 0° latitude, and from 1890 also administered Uganda. The administration of British East Africa was transferred to the Foreign Office on 1 July 1895, and in 1896 so was control of Uganda.
George Eastman Patents Kodak Camera. George Eastman, an American inventor, developed the Kodak camera—the first to use roll film, which he had invented in 1884, and to be suitable for general use. No technical knowledge was required.
Henry Morton Stanley visits Lake Edward and names it after the then Prince of Wales, Edward VII.

The official end of Ferdinand De Lesseps Panama Canal project came on February 4th 1889 when the companies assets went into the hands of the liquidator. By May all work was halted on the isthmus.
Butch Cassidy robs a bank in Telluride Colorado and escapes into Utah.
Japan adopts modern constitution.
Tehuantepec Ship Railroad begins operation.
French Panama Canal Company declares bankruptcy.
Pedro II, emperor of Brazil, overthrown by military coup backed by planters. Brazilian expansionist move north checked by the United States Navy in the Battle of Mona Passage.
First confirmation of existence of Selenite civilization beneath the surface of Luna.
General Boulanger flees from France.
Ravachol attempts to destroy the Earth orbital heligraph station HMS Harbinger.
Milan Obrenovich abdicates from Serbian throne in favor of his son, Alexander. Bulgaria and Ruritania mobilize.
June 6, most of Seattle's central business district burned to the ground in the Great Seattle Fire.
John IV, emperor of Abyssinia, dies and is succeeded by Menelik II.
Italian troops mass on the Abyssinian borders in Eritrea and Somaliland.
Belgians complete conquest of the Coprates. Columns begin raiding outside the Coprates in pursuit of rebels. Anti-human riots break out in many cities on Mars.
Oenotrian Empire declares war on Britain.
Emperor Franz Josef's son Rudolph commits suicide after killing his 16 year old mistress.
The Second International was established at a socialist congress in Paris. The organization was dominated by German and French Marxists. Nevertheless, because of the loose structure of the International, internal disputes were inevitable. Political developments leading to World War I further weakened the federation, which fell apart in 1914.
In 1889 a Cossack soldier of fortune, by the name of Nicholas Achinov, arrived with settlers, infantry and an Orthodox priest at Sagallo; A short-lived Russian colony on the Gulf of Tadjoura in present-day Djibouti. . The French considered the presence of the Russians as a violation of their territorial rights and dispatched two gunboats. The Russians were bombarded and after some loss of life, surrendered. The colonists were deported to Odessa and the dream of Russian expansion in Africa came to an end in less than one year.
Ivan Pavlov Demonstrates Conditioned Reflexes in Dogs. Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov is remembered for his pioneering research into reflex behaviour. Pavlov experimented with dogs to show that they could be induced to salivate, and show signs of anticipating food, by stimuli such as the ringing of a bell that they associate with the appearance of food. Pavlov linked this conditioned reflex behaviour to different areas of the brain cortex. His work has stimulated a debate that some aspects of human behaviour may result from conditioning.

22 March, Dr. Gottlieb Wilhelm Leitner died.

March 31,The Eiffel Tower, of wrought-iron construction, was opened to the public in Paris as a temporary structure, the opening archway. for the Paris World’s Fair in 1889, commemorating the centennial of the French Revolution. It was designed and built by the French engineer Gustave Eiffel. At 300 m (984 ft) tall, it is one of the major landmarks of the city, although it was originally planned to remove it after 5 years. The tower was constructed of approximately 6,300 tonnes of iron. Four arched tapered legs converge to observation decks in the centre, which can be reached either by stairs or lifts. The plan to build a tower 300 metres high was conceived as part of preparations for the World's Fair of 1889. Somewhat surprisingly to the people who commissioned it, it is already proving to be a major source of tourist revenue, so it may be impractical to take it down.

Eiffel Tower

Gustave Eiffel beat 300 other contestants for the building prize and although not all French people liked the Eiffel Tower from the start, it was kept to place telegraphic antennas on the top. Emile Nouguier and Maurice Koechlin, the two chief engineers in Eiffel's company, had the original idea for a very tall tower in June 1884. It was to be designed like a large pylon with four columns of lattice work girders, separated at the base and coming together at the top, and joined to each other by more metal girders at regular intervals. The company had by this time mastered perfectly the principle of building bridge supports. The tower project was a bold extension of this principle up to a height of 300 metres - equivalent to the symbolic figure of 1000 feet. On September 18 1884 Eiffel registered a patent "for a new configuration allowing the construction of metal supports and pylons capable of exceeding a height of 300 metres".
German colonialist Carl Peters signs a treaty of friendship with the Buganda.

May 1, On this day in 1889, May Day, which was traditionally a celebration of the return of spring, marked by dancing around a Maypole, was first observed as a labour holiday, designated as such by the International Socialist Congress.

May 27, the American petrochemical corporation South Penn Oil Co., later Pennzoil Company, was founded in Pennsylvania.

May 31, considered one of the worst natural disasters in American history, a flood ravaged Johnstown, Pennsylvania, causing more than 2,200 deaths. Requisitioned Aerial Flyers are used by the police and fire services to rescue many people from the floods. The need for a US-wide aerial search and rescue service is championed by the New York Times.

US Secret Service agents, James West and Artemis Gordon, rescue Amber Morris, daughter of Arizona's governor, from T. Marcus Cosgrove.

Oct-Nov The Shah Jahan Mosque in Woking, Surrey,England was opened in 1889 as one of the first mosques in westeurope from the orientalist Dr. Gottlieb Wilhelm Leitner in Bath and Bargate stone in indo-saracenic stile commissioned by Shah Jahan, Begum of Bhopal (1868-1901), and maintained since then as a Waqf. Shah Jahan Begum was one of the four female Muslim rulers of Bhopal who reigned between 1819 and 1926. Shah Jahan Begum made sizable donations towards the building of the mosque und also contributed generously towards the founding of the “Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College” at Aligarh, which developed into the Aligarh Muslim University. Sadly, the ambitions of Dr. Leitner were not fulfilled, for the Institute relied too heavily upon Dr. Leitner’s personal enthusiasm and wealth, and it did not survive his early death. This included his ambition to travel to Mars to further his studies. This was to be a prelude to bringing Martian studies into the Oriental Institute.

The Victorian Adventure Continues....


"Conklin's Atlas of the Worlds and Handy Manual of Useful Information" Edited by Frank Chadwick

Science-Fiction Role Playing in a More Civilized Time.

Space: 1889 is Frank Chadwick's registered trademark for his game of Victorian Era Space-faring.