This is a list of events occurring in the 1780s, ordered by year.
January–June [edit ] July–December [edit ] July 11 – French soldiers arrive in Newport, Rhode Island to reinforce colonists in the American Revolutionary War. [1 ] August 16 – American Revolutionary War – Battle of Camden: British troops inflict heavy losses on a Patriot army at Camden, South Carolina. August 9 – American Revolutionary War: Spanish admiral Luis de Córdova y Córdova captures a British convoy totalling 55 vessels amongst Indiamen, frigates and other cargo ships off Cape St. Vincent. [2 ] [3 ] August 24 – Louis XVI of France abolishes the use of torture in extracting confessions. September 21 – Benedict Arnold gives detailed plans of West Point to Major John André. Three days later, André is captured with papers revealing that Arnold was planning to surrender West Point to the British. September 25 – Benedict Arnold flees to British-held New York. October 2 – American Revolutionary War: In Tappan, New York, British spy John André is hanged by American forces. October 7 – American Revolutionary War – Battle of Kings Mountain: Patriot militia forces annihilate a Loyalists under British Major Patrick Ferguson at Kings Mountain in South Carolina. October 10– October 16 – The Great Hurricane flattens the islands of Barbados, Martinique and St. Eustatius: 22,000 dead. November 29 – Maria Theresa of Austria dies and her Habsburg dominions pass to her ambitious son, Joseph II, who has already been Holy Roman Emperor since 1765. December 16 – Emperor Kōkaku accedes to the throne of Japan. December 20 – Start of the Fourth Anglo-Dutch War. [4 ] Date unknown [edit ] Jose Gabriel Kunturkanki, businessman and landowner, proclaims himself Inca Tupac Amaru II. Jeremy Bentham's Introduction to Principles of Morals and Legislation, presenting his formulation of utilitarian ethics, is printed (but not published) in London. Nikephoros Theotokis starts introducing , an attempt to integrate the Edinoverie Old Believers into Russia's established church. Woodford Reserve bourbon whiskey distillery begins operation in Kentucky. In Ireland, Lady Berry, who is sentenced to death for the murder of her son, is released when she agrees to become an executioner (retires 1810) The original Craven Cottage is built by William Craven, 6th Baron Craven, in London on what will become the centre circle of Fulham F.C.'s pitch. The amateur dramatic group Det Dramatiske Selskab in Christiania is founded in Norway. Western countries pay 16,000,000 ounces of silver for Chinese goods. c.9 million population in Britain. January–June [edit ] July–December [edit ] July 27 – French spy François Henri de la Motte is hanged and drawn before a large crowd at Tyburn, London in England for high treason. July 29 – American Revolution – Skirmish at the House in the Horseshoe: A Tory force under David Fanning attacks Phillip Alston's smaller force of Whigs at Alston's home in Cumberland County, North Carolina (in present day Moore County, North Carolina). Alston's troops surrender after Fanning's men attempt to ram the house with a cart of burning straw. August 30 – American Revolution: A French fleet under Comte de Grasse enters Chesapeake Bay, cutting British General Charles Cornwallis off from escape by sea. September 4 – Los Angeles is founded as El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora La Reina de Los Ángeles de Porciuncula (City of Our Lady the Queen of the Angels of Porciuncula) by a group of 44 Spanish settlers. September 5 – American Revolution – Battle of the Chesapeake: A British fleet under Thomas Graves arrives and fights de Grasse, but is unable to break through to relieve the Siege of Yorktown. September 6 – American Revolution – Battle of Groton Heights: The British army attacks a fort in Groton, Connecticut. September 10 – American Revolution: Graves gives up trying to break through the now-reinforced French fleet and returns to New York, leaving Cornwallis to his fate. September 28 – American Revolution: American and French troops begin a siege of the British at Yorktown, Virginia. October 12 – First bagpipes competition in the Masonic Arms, Falkirk, Scotland. October 19 – American Revolution: Following the Siege of Yorktown, General Charles Cornwallis surrenders to General George Washington at Yorktown, Virginia, ending the armed struggle of the American Revolution. October 20 – A Patent of Tolerance, providing limited freedom of worship, is approved in the Habsburg Monarchy. November 5 – John Hanson is elected President of the Continental Congress. November 29 December – A school is founded in Washington County, Pennsylvania that will later be known as Washington & Jefferson College. [8 ] December 12 – American Revolutionary War – Second Battle of Ushant: The British Royal Navy, commanded by Rear Admiral Richard Kempenfelt in HMS , decisively defeats the French fleet in the Victory Bay of Biscay. Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] January 7 – The first American commercial bank ( Bank of North America) opens. January 15 – Superintendent of Finance Robert Morris goes before the U.S. Congress to recommend establishment of a national mint and decimal coinage. January 23 – Laird of Johnstone, George Ludovic Houston invites people to buy marked plots of land which, when built upon, form the planned town of Johnstone, Scotland, to provide employment for his thread and cotton mills. February 5 – The Spanish defeat British forces and capture Minorca. March 8 – In Ohio, the Gnadenhutten massacre of Native Americans takes place in which 29 men, 27 women, and 34 children are killed by white militiamen in retaliation for raids carried out by another Native American group. March 14 – Battle of Wuchale: Emperor Tekle Giyorgis pacifies a group of Oromo near Wuchale. March 27 – Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. March 31 ( Easter Sunday) – Mission San Buenaventura is founded in Las Californias, part of the Spanish Viceroyalty of New Spain. July–December [edit ] Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] February 3 – American Revolutionary War: The Kingdom of Great Britain acknowledges the independence of the United States of America. At this time the Spanish government does not grant diplomatic recognition. February 4 February 26 – The United States Continental Army's Corps of Engineers is disbanded. March 5 – Last celebration of Massacre Day in Boston, Massachusetts. March 15 – Newburgh Conspiracy: A potential uprising in the Continental Army stationed at Newburgh, New York, is defused when George Washington asks the officers to support the supremacy of the United States Congress. April 15 – Preliminary articles of peace ending the American Revolutionary War are ratified. May 18 – The first United Empire Loyalists, fleeing the new United States, reach Parrtown in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. May 26 – A Great Jubilee Day celebrating end of American Revolution held in Trumbull, Connecticut. June 4 or June 5 – The Montgolfier brothers publicly demonstrate their montgolfière hot air balloon at Annonay in France. June 8 – The volcano Laki in Iceland begins an 8-month eruption starting the chain of natural disasters known as the Móðuharðindin, killing tens of thousands throughout Europe, including up to 33% of Iceland's population, and causing widespread famine. It has been described as one of "the greatest environmental catastrophes in European History". [11 ] July–December [edit ] July 16 – Grants of land in Canada to American loyalists are announced. July 24 – The Treaty of Georgievsk is signed between Imperial Russia and the Kingdom of Kartli-Kakheti making Georgia a protectorate of Russia. August 5 – Mount Asama erupts, causing turmoil in Edo period Japan. August 18 – The 1783 Great Meteor passes on a thousand-mile track across the North Sea, Great Britain and France, prompting scientific discussion. August 27 – Jacques Charles and Les Frères Robert launch the world's first hydrogen-filled balloon, , in Le Globe Paris. September 3 – Peace of Paris: A treaty between the United States and the Kingdom of Great Britain is signed in Paris, formally ending the American Revolutionary War; and treaties are signed between Britain, France and Spain at Versailles ending hostilities with the Franco-Spanish Alliance. September 9 – Dickinson College is chartered in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. October 3 – First Waterford Crystal glassmaking business begins production in Waterford, Ireland. November 2 – In Rocky Hill, New Jersey, United States General George Washington gives his Farewell Address to the Army. November 21 – In Paris, Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier and François Laurent, marquis d'Arlandes, make the first untethered hot air balloon flight (flight time: 25 minutes, Maximum height: 900 m). November 24 – In Spain, the is signed, stating that anyone who will swear fealty to Spain and is of the Cedula of Population Roman Catholic faith is welcome to populate Trinidad and Tobago. November 25 – American Revolutionary War: The last British troops leave New York City 3 months after the signing of the Treaty of Paris. November 29 – New Jersey earthquake: An earthquake of 5.3 magnitude strikes New Jersey. December 1 – Jacques Charles and Nicolas-Louis Robert make the first manned flight in a hydrogen-filled balloon, , in Paris. La Charlière December 4 – At Fraunces Tavern in New York City, U.S. General George Washington formally bids his officers farewell. December 26 – Louis-Sébastien Lenormand makes the first ever recorded public demonstration of a parachute descent by jumping from the tower of the Montpellier observatory in France using his rigid-framed model which he intends as a form of fire escape. Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] July–December [edit ] Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] January 1 – The first issue of the , later known as Daily Universal Register , is published in The Times London. January 7 – Frenchman Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American John Jeffries travel from Dover, England to Calais, France in a hydrogen gas balloon, becoming the first to cross the English Channel by air. January 20 – Invading Siamese forces, attempting to exploit the political chaos in Vietnam, are ambushed and annihilated at the Mekong River by the Tây Sơn in the Battle of Rạch Gầm-Xoài Mút. January 27 – The University of Georgia is founded. May 10 – A hot air balloon crashes in Tullamore, Ireland, causing a fire that burns down about 100 houses, making it the world's first aviation disaster (by 36 days). [13 ] June 3 – Continental Navy disbanded. June 15 – After several attempts, Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier and his companion, Pierre Romain, set off in a balloon from Boulogne-sur-Mer, but the balloon suddenly deflates (without the envelope catching fire) and crashes near Wimereux in the Pas-de-Calais, killing both men, making it the first fatal aviation disaster. July–December [edit ] Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] July–December [edit ] Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ]
Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States
January 6 – The North Carolina General Assembly authorizes nine commissioners to purchase 100 acres (0.40 km 2) of land for the county seat of Chatham County. The town is named Pittsborough (later shortened to Pittsboro) for William Pitt the Younger. January 11 – William Herschel discovers Titania and Oberon, two moons of Uranus. January 19 – Mozart's Symphony No. 38 is premièred in Prague. February 4 – Shays' Rebellion in Massachusetts fails. February 28 – A charter is granted establishing the institution which will become the University of Pittsburgh. April 2 – A Charter of Justice is signed providing the authority for the establishment of the first New South Wales (i.e. Australian) Courts of Criminal and Civil Jurisdiction. May 7 – The New Church is founded. May 13 – Captain Arthur Phillip leaves Portsmouth in England with the eleven ships of the First Fleet carrying around 700 convicts and at least 300 crew and guards to establish a penal colony in Australia. May 14 – In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, delegates begin arriving for a Constitutional Convention (United States). May 22 – In Britain, Thomas Clarkson and Granville Sharp found the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade with support from John Wesley, Josiah Wedgwood and others. May 25 – In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, delegates begin to convene the Constitutional Convention intended to amend the Articles of Confederation. However, a new United States Constitution is eventually produced. George Washington presides over the Convention. May – Orangist troops attack Vreeswijk, Harmelen and Maarssen: civil war starts in the Dutch Republic. May 31 – The original Lord's Cricket Ground in London holds its first cricket match; [5 ] Marylebone Cricket Club founded. [17 ] June 6 – Franklin College, named for Benjamin Franklin, opens in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. It later merges with Marshall College to become Franklin and Marshall College. June 20 – Oliver Ellsworth moves at the Federal Convention that the government be called the United States. June 28 – Princess Wilhelmina of Orange, sister of King Frederick William II of Prussia, is captured by Dutch Republican patriots, taken to Goejanverwellesluis and not allowed to travel to The Hague. July–December [edit ] Date unknown [edit ] January–June [edit ] January 1 – The first edition of , previously The Times The Daily Universal Register, is published in London. January 2 – Georgia ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the fourth U.S. state under the new government. January 9 – Connecticut ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the fifth U.S. state. January 18 – The leading ship (armed tender HMS ) in Captain Supply Arthur Phillip's First Fleet arrives at Botany Bay to colonise Australia. January 22 – the Continental Congress, effectively a caretaker government, elects Cyrus Griffin as its last president. January 24 – The La Perouse expedition in the and Astrolabe arrives off Boussole Botany Bay just as Captain Arthur Phillip is attempting to move his colony from there to Sydney Cove in Port Jackson. January 26 – Australia Day: Eleven ships of the First Fleet from Botany Bay, led by Captain Arthur Phillip, land at Sydney Cove (which will become Sydney), Australia, where he determines to establish the British prison colony of New South Wales, the first permanent European settlement on the continent. January 31 – Henry Benedict Stuart becomes the new Stuart claimant to the throne of Great Britain as King Henry IX and the figurehead of Jacobitism. February 1 – Isaac Briggs and William Longstreet patent a steamboat. February 6 – Massachusetts ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the sixth U.S. state. February 9 – Austria enters the Russo-Turkish War of 1787–1792 and attacks Moldavia. February 17 – The uninhabited Lord Howe Island is discovered by the brig HMS , commanded by Supply Lieutenant Ball, who is on his way from Botany Bay to Norfolk Island with convicts to start a penal settlement there. They arrive at Norfolk Island on March 6. March 10 – The La Perouse expedition leaves Sydney Cove for New Caledonia, never to be seen again. March 14 – The Edinburgh Evening Courant carries a notice of £200 reward for the capture of William Brodie, a town councilor doubling as a burglar. March 21 – Great New Orleans Fire kills 25% of the population and destroys 856 buildings, including St. Louis Cathedral and the Cabildo, leaving most of the town in ruins. April 7 – American pioneers establish the town of Marietta (in modern-day Ohio), the first permanent American settlement outside the original Thirteen Colonies. April 13 – America's first recorded riot, the 'Doctors' Mob', begins. Residents of Manhattan are angry about grave robbers stealing bodies for doctors to dissect. The rioting is suppressed on the 15th. April 28 – Maryland ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the seventh U.S. state. May 10 – The Royal Dramatic Theatre ( Kungliga Dramatiska Teatern), Sweden's national drama company, is founded. May 15 – The Australian Frontier Wars begin. May 23 – South Carolina ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the eighth U.S. state. June 7 – France: Day of the Tiles, which some consider the beginning of the French Revolution. June 9 – The African Association, an exploration group dedicated to plotting the Niger River and finding Timbuktu, is founded in England. June 17 – English captains Thomas Gilbert and John Marshall, returning from Botany Bay, become the first Europeans to encounter the Gilbert Islands in the Pacific Ocean. They also chart islands in "Lord Mulgrove's range", later known as the [20 ] Marshall Islands. June 21 – New Hampshire ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the ninth U.S. state, enabling the Constitution to go into effect. (The latter happens on March 4, 1789, when the first Congress elected under the new Constitution assembles.) June 25 – The Virginia Ratifying Convention ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the tenth U.S. state under the new government. June 26 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, in Vienna, completes his antepenultimate symphony, now called the Symphony No. 39 in E-flat. July–December [edit ] July – King Louis XVI of France calls for a spring session of the Estates General in 1789. July 13 – A hailstorm sweeps across France and the Dutch Republic with hailstones 'as big as quart bottles' that take 'three days to melt'; immense damage is done. [21 ] July 24 – Governor General Lord Dorchester, by proclamation issued from the Chateau St. Louis in Quebec City, divides the British Province of Quebec into five Districts, namely: Gaspé, Nassau, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, and Hesse. July 26 – New York ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the eleventh U.S. state. July 28 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, in Vienna, completes his penultimate symphony, now called the Symphony No. 40 in G Minor. August 8 – King Louis XVI of France agrees to convene the Estates-General meeting in May 1789, the first time since 1614. August 10 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, in Vienna, completes his final symphony, now called the Symphony No. 41 in C Major, and nicknamed (after his death) The Jupiter. August 27 – The trial of Deacon William Brodie for burglary begins in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is sentenced to death by hanging. September 24 – ' Theater War' begins when the army of Denmark–Norway invades Sweden. October 1 – William Brodie is hanged at the Tolbooth in Edinburgh. December 6 – Russo-Turkish War, 1787-1792: The Ottoman fortress of Özi falls to the Russians after a prolonged siege and a murderous storm with a temperature of -23 degrees C. December 14 – King Charles III of Spain dies and is succeeded by his son Charles IV. Date unknown [edit ] Annual British iron production reaches 68,000 tons. January–June [edit ] February – King Gustav III of Sweden enforces the Union and Security Act, delivering the coup de grace to Sweden's 70-year old parliamentarian system in favor of absolute monarchy. February 4 – George Washington is unanimously elected the first President of the United States by the United States Electoral College. March – First version of a graphic description of a slave ship (the ) issued on behalf of the English Brookes Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade. [22 ] [23 ] March 4 – At Federal Hall in New York City, the 1st United States Congress meets and declares the new United States Constitution to be in effect. The bicameral United States Congress replaces the unicameral Congress of the Confederation as the legislature of the federal government of the United States. April 1 – At Federal Hall, the United States House of Representatives attains its first quorum and elects congressman Frederick Muhlenberg as the first Speaker of the House. April 6 – At Federal Hall, the United States Senate attains its first quorum and elects John Langdon of Pennsylvania as its first President pro tempore. Later that day, the Senate and the House of Representatives meet in joint session for the first time, and the electoral votes of the first U.S. Presidential election are counted. General George Washington is certified as President-elect and John Adams is certified as Vice-President elect. April 7 – Selim III (1789–1807) succeeds Abd-ul-Hamid I (1773–1789) as Ottoman Sultan. April 21 – John Adams takes office as the first Vice President of the United States and begins presiding over the United States Senate. April 28 – Mutiny on the : Bounty Fletcher Christian leads the mutiny on the British Royal Navy ship HMS against Captain Bounty William Bligh in the Pacific Ocean. April 30 – George Washington is inaugurated at Federal Hall in New York City, beginning his term as the first President of the United States. May 5 – In France, the Estates-General convenes for the first time in 175 years. June 14 – Survivors of the mutiny on the , including Captain Bounty William Bligh and 18 others, reach Timor after a nearly 4,000-mile (6,400 km) journey in an open boat. July–December [edit ] July 27 – The first agency of the Federal government of the United States under the new Constitution, the Department of Foreign Affairs (from September 15 renamed the Department of State), is established. August 4 – In France, members of the Constituent Assembly take an oath to end feudalism and abandon their privileges. August 7 – The United States Department of War is established. [24 ] August 18 – The Liège Revolution breaks out in the Prince-Bishopric of Liège. August 21 – A proposal for a Bill of Rights is adopted by the United States House of Representatives. [25 ] [26 ] August 26 – The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen is proclaimed in France by the Constituent Assembly. August 28 – William Herschel discovers Enceladus, one of Saturn's moons. September 2 – The United States Department of the Treasury is founded. September 22 – Russo-Turkish War, 1787-1792 – Battle of Rymnik: Alexander Suvorov roundly defeats 100,000 Turks. September 24 – The Judiciary Act of 1789 establishes the federal judiciary and the United States Marshals Service. [27 ] September 25 – The United States Congress proposes a set of 12 amendments for ratification by the states. Ratification for 10 of these proposals is completed on December 5, 1791, creating the United States Bill of Rights. September 29 – The U.S. Department of War establishes the nation's first regular army, with a strength of several hundred men. October 5 – Women's March on Versailles: Some 7,000 women march 12 miles (19 km) from Paris to the royal Palace of Versailles to demand action over high bread prices. October 10 – Physician Joseph-Ignace Guillotin proposes to the French National Assembly the adoption of more humane and egalitarian forms of capital punishment, including use of the guillotine. October 24 – Brabant revolutionaries cross the border from the Dutch Republic into the Austrian Netherlands as the first act of the Brabant Revolution; first public reading of the Manifesto of the People of Brabant declaring the independence of the Austrian Netherlands. October 27 – Austrian army beaten by Brabant revolutionaries at the Battle of Turnhout November 6 – Pope Pius VI appoints John Carroll the first Roman Catholic bishop in the United States. November 20 – New Jersey ratifies the United States Bill of Rights, the first state to do so. November 21 – North Carolina ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the 12th U.S. state. November 26 – A national Thanksgiving Day is observed in the United States as recommended by President George Washington and approved by Congress. December 11 – The University of North Carolina, the oldest public university in the United States, is founded. December 23 – A leaflet circulated in France accuses marquis de Favras of plotting to rescue the royal family. Date unknown [edit ] Significant people [edit ] Births [edit ] Deaths [edit ] References [edit ] ^ "Timeline of the American Revolutionary War". Independence Hall. Archived from the original on 30 May 2007 . Retrieved 2007-06-01. ^ Hattendorf, John (2000). Naval policy and strategy in the Mediterranean: past, present, and future. Taylor & Francis. p. 37. ISBN 0-7146-8054-0. ^ Harbron, John (1988). Trafalgar and the Spanish Navy. Conway Maritime Press. p. 84. ISBN 0-85177-477-6. ^ Edler, Friedrich (2001) . The Dutch Republic and The American Revolution. Honolulu: University Press of the Pacific. pp. 163–166. ISBN 0-89875-269-8. ^ a b c d e Williams, Hywel (2005). Cassell's Chronology of World History. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. pp. 333–334. ISBN 0-304-35730-8. ^ Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. 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