ON THIS DAY -- AUGUST
(Copyright 2004, Literary Liaisons, Ltd. DO NOT REPRODUCE or distribute without permission.)
For a more comprehensive list, including a Year by Year timeline, see our Research Guide.
1st. . .
I, Roman emperor who invaded Britain in 43 and made it a province, born.
VI, King of France, died.
Anne, the last Stuart sovereign who reigned as Queen of England, died. George I of Hanover became King upon her death.
Doggett's Coat and Badge race, the first competitive rowing event, took place on
Britannia' was sung for the first time in Thomas Arne's Alfred.
Joseph Priestley discovered oxygen.
first savings bank opened, in Hamburg.
Scott Key, U.S. poet who wrote 'The Star Spangled Banner', born.
Melville, U.S. novelist of Moby Dick,
London Bridge was opened by King William IV and Queen Adelaide.
Clay Street Hill Railroad, San Francisco's cable car system, began running.
became the 38th state of the Union.
2nd. . .
William II, was accidentally killed by an arrow while out hunting.
Charles L'Enfant, French army engineer, architect and city planner, born.
Gainsborough, English painter, died.
Mongolfier, French balloonist, died.
Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland,
Belgravia Roller Skating Rink opened in London, the first in Britain.
Bill' Hickok, U.S. frontier scout and law enforcer, was shot in the back by Jack
McCall in Deadwood, South Dakota.
Dell, English romantic author of Storm
duties were introduced into Britain.
3rd. . .
seized the Roman army supply depot after defeating the infantry in the Battle of
II, King of Scotland, was killed during the siege of Roxburgh Castle.
Columbus set sail from Andalucia, Spain, in the Santa
Maria on his first voyage of discovery.
La Scala Opera House opened in Milan.
Richard Arkwright, English inventor of the spinning frame, died.
Joseph Paxton, English architect and designer of the Crystal Palace, born.
Graves Otis, U.S. safety lift inventor, born.
Haakon VII of Norway, born.
George Fargo, co-founder of the Wells-Fargo Express Company, died.
Brooke, English poet, born.
4th. . .
de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, was defeated and killed at the battle of Evesham.
Bysshe Shelley, English romantic poet, born.
Irving, Scottish clergyman who founded the Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, born.
Pater, English writer and critic, born.
Henry Hudson, British writer on natural history, born.
Hamsun, Norwegian writer of realistic novels and Nobel prize winner, born.
Harry Lauder, Scottish music-hall comedian, born.
Red Cross Society was founded in Britain.
Christian Andersen, Danish fairy-tale writer, died.
Laura Knight, English artist, born.
5th. . .
Newcomen, English inventor of the first 'automatic' steam engine, died.
Frederick North, British Prime Minister whose indecisive leadership led to the
loss of the American colonies, died.
Howe, English admiral, died.
John Eyre, English administrator in Jamaica, born.
de Maupassant, French author, born.
laying of the first transatlantic cable was completed by Cyrus Field and opened
by Queen Victoria at the British end, exchanging greetings with President
Buchanan in the U.S.
first traveller's cheque, devised by American Express, was cashed.
Engels, German co-author with Marx of the Communist Manifesto, died.
6th. . .
Parker, second Protestant Archbishop of Canterbury, born.
Hathaway, Shakespeare's wife, died.
Jonson, English playwright who had Shakespeare in the original cast of one of
his plays, died.
Velasquez, Spanish painter, died.
Wordsworth, author and daughter of William Wordsworth, born.
Lord Tennyson, English Poet Laureate, born.
first known advertising slogan, 'Worth a guinea a box', appeared on Beechams
Powders' packets and advertising material.
Fleming, Scottish bacteriologist who discovered penicillin, born.
Turner, a 35-yr-old prostitute believed to have been Jack the Ripper's first
victim, was stabbed to death in Whitechapel.
Savoy Hotel was opened.
7th. . .
UFO or Flying Saucer appeared over the city of Basle in Switzerland and was
captured as an illustration in a woodcut.
Blake, British naval commander who captured the Spanish treasure fleet off Santa
became 'Royal' with the attendance of Queen Anne at the horse races.
Greene, Rhode Island Quaker and general in the revolutionary War, born.
Farrar, English clergyman born in Bombay who wrote sentimental school stories,
British parliament passed an act prohibiting the employment of climbing boys as
Hari, exotic Dutch spy who passed secrets to the Germans during the First World
Yates, English novelist, born.
8th. . .
became emperor of Rome following the death of his father.
Brahe began work in the first purpose-built observatory in Denmark.
final naval engagement with the Spanish Armada took place.
doctor, Michel Gabriel Piccard, became the first to climb Mont Blanc.
Canning, English statesman and Prime Minister, died just three months after his
Britain, the Poor Law Amendment Act was passed, which replaced outdoor relief
with the workhouse system of parishes caring for their poor.
Richards, English author, born.
Kinnan Rawlings, U.S. author of The
9th. . .
V, English king who led his army in the battle of Agincourt, born.
Walton, English author of The Compleat
Dryden, the first Poet Laureate to hold the title officially, born.
Tromp, Dutch admiral, was killed during a battle with the English fleet off the
coast of Holland.
Telford, Scottish civil engineer who designed and built the Menai suspension
bridge in Wales, born.
Thomas Morton, American dental surgeon who discovered the use of ether, born.
Frederick Marryat, English author of Mr.
Midshipman Easy, died.
Harrison Surratt was arrested as an alleged co-conspirator in the assassination
of President Lincoln, but his alibi split the jury.
10th. . .
foundation stone of the Royal Observatory, Greenwich was laid by King Charles
completed his popular Eine Kleine
Nachtmusik (A Little Night Music).
Cavour, Italian statesman, born.
became the 24th state of the Union.
Samuel Keene, English illustrator who contributed to Punch,
Smithsonian Institution was established at Washington with a bequest from
English scientist, James Smithson, to foster scientific research.
Hoover, 31st U.S. President, born.
screw bottle top was patented by Dan Rylands of Yorkshire.
Rudolf Diesel's prototype engine was tested, but it would take four more years
11th. . .
Tetzel, the monk who sold indulgences to raise money to pay for St. Peter's in
Meade, English physician whose patients included royalty, born.
first race meeting at Ascot was held in honor of Queen Anne.
Clermont, Fulton's steamboat, made a successful run up the Hudson
Mary Yonge, English novelist, born.
Mills, British circus proprietor, born.
Roberts Rinehart, U.S. mystery writer, born.
Henry, Cardinal Newman, English churchman and promoter of the High Church, died.
Blyton, English author of children's stories, born.
12th. . .
Bewick, English illustrator and wood engraver, born.
IV, King of England, whose secret marriage to Roman Catholic Maria Fitzherbert
was annulled, born.
Southey, English poet and Poet Laureate, born.
Castlereagh, British foreign secretary under pressure to legally dissolve George
IV's marriage to Caroline, committed suicide.
Blake, English poet and painter, died.
Stephenson, English engineer who built the steam locomotive Rocket,
first Hundred Guinea Cup was offered by the Royal Yacht Squadron of Great
Britain for a race around the Isle of Wight.
last quagga, a zebra-like animal, died at the Amsterdam Zoo.
Alva Edison made the first sound recording on to a foil-wrapped cylinder on the
13th. . .
Anglo-Austrian army defeated the French armies at Blenheim.
Adelaide, consort of William IV, born.
Cape of Good Hope was made a British colony when it was ceded by the Dutch.
Stone, American social reformer, born.
George Grove, English engineer who became the first director of the Royal
College of Music, born.
Laennec, French physician and inventor of the stethoscope, died.
Oakley, U.S. marksman and star of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, born.
first performance of Wagner's The Ring
Cycle in its entirety was staged at Bayreuth.
John Everett Millais, English Pre-Raphaelite painter, died.
14th. . .
Sarpi, Italian statesman, patriot and historian, born.
Christian Oerstad, Danish scientist who discovered electromagnetism, born.
Toplady, English clergyman who wrote the hymn, 'Rock of Ages', died.
Sebastian Wesley, English organist and composer, born.
von Kraft-Ebing, German neuropsychiatrist who pioneered the study of sexual
Galsworthy, English novelist and playwright, born.
world's first car registration plates were introduced in France.
They also issued the first driving licenses for passing a driving test,
and to complete the day, the first parking restrictions came into force.
15th. . .
King of Scotland, killed in battle by Malcolm and buried on the island of Iona.
I, French Emperor, born in Corsica.
Walter Scott, Scottish historic novelist and inventor of the genre with his
novel Waverley, born.
de Quincey, English essayist and opium addict who wrote Confessions
of an Opium Eater, born.
first regular British detective force was formed. It would assume the name
Criminal Investigation Department in 1878.
Tivoli Pleasure gardens were opened in Copenhagen.
Coleridge-Taylor, English composer, born.
Ferber, U.S. novelist and playwright, born.
Lawrence, Welsh soldier and writer known as 'Lawrence of Arabia', born.
16th. . .
VIII commanded his troops at Guinegatte in a victory over the French, since
known as the Battle of the Spurs.
de La Bruyere, French writer remembered for his maxims, born.
Miller, leading English comic, died.
Augustus, Duke of York and second son of George III, born.
Nairne, Scottish poet and author of Jacobite songs, born.
broke up a crowd meeting to demand Parliamentary reforms on St. Peter's Field,
Manchester. Eleven died in what
became known as the Peterloo Massacre.
Phyfe, American cabinetmaker and furniture maker, died.
Heyer, English novelist, born.
17th. . .
Crockett, U.S. frontiersman and politician, born.
II, who laid the foundation of Prussia's greatness, died.
army defeated the Russians at Smolensk.
first steamship to cross the Atlantic entirely under power, the Canadian Royal William, began her journey from Nova Scotia to the Isle of
Woolley, U.S. actor, born.
West, U.S. actress and playwright, born.
was discovered at Bonanza Creek, a small tributary of the Klondike in Canada's
Bridget Driscoll of Croydon, Surrey, became the first pedestrian to be knocked
down and killed by a motor vehicle.
18th. . .
Khan, rule of Mongolia, died after a fall from his horse.
Dare, the first child of English parents to be born in America, was born in
present-day North Carolina.
first rules of boxing, drawn by Jack Broughton, Britain's third heavyweight
champion, were confirmed this day.
Lewis, American explorer, born.
Russell, 1st Earl Russell, and British Prime Minister, born.
Jacques Garnerin, French balloonist, died.
Field, U.S. department store founder who opened the store in Chicago in 1868,
Joseph I, Emperor of Austria-Hungary, born.
19th. . .
first Roman Emperor, known as Octavian, died.
Dryden, English poet and Poet Laureate, born.
Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal in Britain, born.
Pascal, French philosopher, died.
du Barry, Louis XV's last mistress, born.
Salieri, Italian composer and conductor, born.
Nasmyth, Scottish inventor of the steam hammer, born.
Montague Doughty, English explorer and author, born.
Wright, U.S. aviation pioneer, born.
Smith, English Assyriologist, died of exhaustion during an excavation at the age
cabs appeared in London, but proved uneconomical.
20th. . .
Peri, Italian composer, born.
first African slaves arrive in Jamestown, Virginia, when a Dutch ship anchors
with twenty human captives among its cargo.
Vitus Jonas Bering, Danish explorer and navigator, is the first European to
sight Alaska. The Bering Sea is named after him.
Asbury, pioneer bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church in America, born.
Bozzaris, Greek patriot in the Greek War for Independence, died.
Harrison, 23rd President of the U.S., born.
U.S. General Winfield Scott defeats a Mexican army of 20,000 at the Battle of
Churubusco during the Mexican-American War.
Poincare, French statesman and 9th president of the republic, born.
The newly organized National Labor Union holds its first formal meeting in
Baltimore, Maryland, calling on Congress to mandate an eight-hour work day.
Lovecraft, American author of the macabre story, born.
21st. . .
Murdock, Scottish engineer who invented coal-gas lighting, born.
IV, King of England, born.
Wellesley, the future Wellington, defeated Napoleon's General Junot at the
battle of Vimiero.
Lincoln-Douglas debates began in a race for the Senate.
Turner begins a bloody slave insurrection in Southampton County, Virginia with
his followers, killing almost sixty whites, before being subdued by militia and
Beardsley, artist and one of the leaders of the 'Decadent' movement, born.
Grahame-White, English pioneer aviator, born.
catcher Moses Fleetwood Walker of the Cleveland Whites is barred from a minor
league game against the Louisville Eclipses in Kentucky. Racial segregation soon
becomes the rule in every league from the majors on.
22nd. . .
VII led his troops to victory over Richard III in the last battle of the War of
the Roses on Bosworth Field.
Civil War began in England when Charles I erected his standard in front of a few
hundred of his Royalists in Nottingham.
Francois de la Perouse, French navigator, born.
Honore Fragonard, French painter, died.
Strauss, Austrian composer and conductor, and son of Johann Strauss, born.
Alexander Mackenzie, Scottish composer, born.
yacht America won the Royal Yacht
Squadron Cup, now known as 'America's Cup,' at the International Regatta, Cowes,
Debussy, French composer of La Mer,
John Sanger, English circus owner, died.
Parker, American satirical writer, born.
23rd. . .
Gnaeus Agricola, Roman general renowned for his conquests in Britain, died.
Visigoths sacked Rome and put an end to the era of Roman civilization and
William Wallace, Scottish patriot who demanded independence for his country, was
hanged, drawn and quartered at Smithfield, London.
Duke of Buckingham was assassinated at Porstmouth by John Felton, a discontented
XVI, the last King of France who set in motion the revolution, born.
Henley, English poet and critic, born.
Toynbee, English historian and social reformer who coined the phrase 'the
industrial revoution,' born.
Lee Masters, U.S. poet and novelist of Spoon
River Anthology, born.
24th. . .
Vesuvius erupted and buried the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in hot
of French Huguenots were murdered in Paris by order of Catherine de Medici and
the Catholic French court.
Blood, Irish adventurer who tried to steal the Crown jewels from the Tower of
Charnock established a trading post in West Bengal, which would become India's
Stubbs, English painter, born.
Chatterton, starving English poet, refused food from his friends and instead
took arsenic and died.
troops invaded Washington and set fire to the White House and the Capitol.
Both were rebuilt and enlarged.
Bronte sent her manuscript of Jane Eyre
from the railway station at Haworth to her London publisher.
25th. . .
General Council of Nicaea decided the rules for computing the date of Easter
IV ('the Terrible), first Tsar of Russia, born.
Henry Morgan, Welsh buccaneer and Lieutenant Governor of Jamaica, born.
of French immigrants settled in Louisiana.
Meynell became the first known woman jockey when she rode over a four-mile
course in York.
Watt, English engineer and inventor, died.
Pinkerton, U.S. detective, born in Scotland.
William Herschel, German-born British astronomer, died.
women graduated as Bachelors of Arts at the Oberlin College Institute, Ohio, the
first women to be granted degrees.
Matthew Webb became the first person to swim the English Channel.
26th. . .
Battle of Crecy took place in the first decade of the Hundred Years War between
Britain and France. Edward III of
England was the victor.
Hals, Dutch portrait and genre painter, born.
Robert Walpole, first Prime Minister, born.
Michel Montgolfier, French hot air balloonist, born.
Laurent Lavoisier, French chemist, born.
French Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of Men.
Philippe, the 'Citizen King' of France, died in England after abdicating.
Albert, Consort to Queen Victoria, born in Bavaria.
Buchan, Lord Tweedsmuir, Scottish novelist and Governor-General of Canada, born.
27th. . .
Chinese philosopher, born--(one suggested birthday).
Venetian painter, died.
Montgolfier brothers helped launch the first hydrogen balloon to fly.
Tytler of Edinburgh made the first free flight in a balloon in Britain.
world's first oil well was drilled at Titusville, Pennsylvania.
Rowland Hill, English postal service pioneer, died.
Hon. Charles Stewart Rolls, English aviator and motor manufacturer, born.
Drieser, author of An American Tragedy,
volcanic eruption on Pulau sent ash and debris 50 miles into the air, and caused
tidal waves reaching as far away as Hawaii, killing thousands.
Forester, English novelist, born in Cairo.
28th. . .
explorers landed at the site of St. Augustine, Florida.
Wolfgang von Goethe, German poet, novelist and playwright, born.
Leo Tolstoy, Russian novelist of War and
Edward Burne-Jones, English painter of the Pre-Raphaelite school, born.
surrenders to Austrian forces, which had laid siege to the city since its
proclamation of independence a month earlier.
Channel telegraph cable was finally laid between Dover and Cap Gris Nez.
first performance of Wagner's Lohengrin
was staged at Weimar.
Stonewall Jackson captures and plunders Union supply depot at Manassas Junction,
the last great ruler of Zululand, is captured by the British after defeat at the
battle of Ulundi.
29th. . .
Colbert, French statesman and founder of the French Navy, born.
Hoyle, English writer of books which codified the rules of card and indoor
Auguste Ingres, French classical painter, born.
HMS Royal George sank off Spithead
while at anchor. Nine hundred lives
Wendell Holmes, U.S. physician, poet and humorist, born.
Faraday successfully demonstrated the first electrical transformer at the Royal
Treaty of Nanking was signed to end the Opium War.
Brigham Young, Mormon leader in Salt Lake City, died.
first motor cycle was patented by Gottlieb Daimler in Germany.
30th. . .
Queen of Egypt, died after an asp bit her.
XI, King of France responsible for its unification after the Hundred Years War,
Louis David, French court painter, born.
Wollstonecraft Shelley, English author of Frankenstein,
and daughter of the early feminist, Mary Wollstonecraft, born.
first trams in Britain began running, operated by the Birkenhead Street Railway.
Jackson led the Confederate troops to victory against the Union army at the
second Battle of Bull Run in the American Civil War.
first stereo system was patented by Clement Ader of Germany.
Ernest Rutherford, 1st Baron Rutherford, British experimental
physicist who was the first to split an atom, born.
31st. . .
Roman emperor remembered for his murderous reign, born.
V, King of England, died from dysentery while in France.
Mogul emperor whose influence encouraged the growth of Persian culture, born.
Bunyan, English author of Pilgrim's
Pierre Baudelaire, French poet, died.
Montessori, Italian educationist, born.
prostitute named Mary Ann Nicholls was found in Whitecahpel. She would be the
first of Jack the Ripper's victims.
Wilhelmina, Queen of the Netherlands, born.
went on sale in Britain.