This article is about the year 1870. For the 1971 Italian film, see 1870 (film)
Year 1870 (MDCCCLXX) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar.
- January 1
- January 3 – Construction of the Brooklyn Bridge begins.
- January 6 – The Musikverein, Vienna is inaugurated in Austria-Hungary.
- January 10 – John D. Rockefeller incorporates Standard Oil.
- January 15 – A political cartoon for the first time symbolizes the United States Democratic Party with a donkey ("A Live Jackass Kicking a Dead Lion" by Thomas Nast for Harper's Weekly).
- January 20 – SS City of Boston vanishes at sea with all 177 aboard.
- January 23 – U.S soldiers attack a peaceful camp of Piegan Blackfoot Indians led by chief Heavy Runner in the Marias Massacre.
- January 26 – Reconstruction era of the United States: Virginia rejoins the Union.
- January 27 – The first college sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta, is established at DePauw University in the United States.
- February – Vrain Denis-Lucas is sentenced to 2 years in prison for multiple forgery in Paris.
- February 1 – Goodna State School in Goodna, Queensland, Australia is founded.
- February 2 – It is revealed that the famed Cardiff Giant is just carved gypsum and not the petrified remains of a human.
- February 3 – The 15th Amendment to the United States Constitution, guaranteeing African-Americans the right to vote, is passed.
- February 9 – The Army Weather Bureau (within the Army Signal Corps) is created.
- February 10
- February 12 – Women gain the right to vote in Utah Territory.
- February 23 – Military control of Mississippi ends and it is readmitted to the Union.
- February 25 – Hiram Rhodes Revels, a Republican from Mississippi, is sworn into the United States Senate, becoming the first African American ever to sit in the U.S. Congress.
- February 26 – In New York City, the first pneumatic subway is opened.
- February 26 – The German Commerzbank is founded in Hamburg.
- February 27 – The "circle of the sun" flag of Japan is adopted as the national flag for Japanese merchant ships by proclamation of the Daijō-kan.
- February 28 – The Bulgarian Exarchate is established by decree of Sultan Abd-ul-Aziz of the Ottoman Empire.
- March 1 – Marshal Francisco Solano López's last troops are cornered by those of the Triple Alliance at the Battle of Cerro Cora. López refuses to surrender and is killed. Fighting ends in Paraguay – the Paraguayan War is over.
- March 4 – Thomas Scott is executed by Louis Riel's provisional government during the Red River Rebellion in modern day Manitoba, Canada.
- March 5 – First ever international Association football match, England v Scotland, takes place under the auspices of the Football Association at The Oval, London.
- March 10 – The Deutsche Bank is founded in Berlin.
- March 19 – The Ohio Legislature passes the Cannon Act, thereby establishing the Ohio Agriculture and Mechanical College, later Ohio State University.
- March 24 – Syracuse University is established and officially opens.
- March 30
- March 31 – Thomas Mundy Peterson is the first African-American to vote in an election.
- January 2 – Ernst Barlach, German sculptor, graphic artist, and poet (d. 1938)
- January 6 – Gustav Bauer, Chancellor of Germany (d. 1944)
- January 8 – Miguel Primo de Rivera, dictator of Spain (d. 1930)
- January 11 – Alexander Stirling Calder, American sculptor (d. 1945)
- January 20 – Ajahn Mun Bhuridatta, Thai Buddhist monk (d. 1949)
- January 22 – John B. Sheridan, Irish American sports journalist (d. 1930)
- February 7
- February 12 – Marie Lloyd, English singer (d. 1922)
- March 4 – Thomas Sturge Moore, English poet, author and artist (d. 1944)
- March 5 – Frank Norris, American writer (d. 1902)
- March 13 – Seale Harris, American Physician (d. 1957)
- March 17 – Horace Donisthorpe, English entomologist (d. 1951)
- March 20 – Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, German general (d. 1964)
- April 1 – Hamaguchi Osachi, 27th Prime Minister of Japan (d. 1931)
- April 3 – Agda Östlund, Swedish politician (d. 1942)
- April 4 – George Albert Smith, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (d. 1951)
- April 7 – Anna Lindhagen, Swedish politician (d. 1941)
- April 17 – Ray Stannard Baker, American journalist and author (d. 1946)
- April 22 – Vladimir Lenin, Russian revolutionary and first Premier of the Soviet Union (d. 1924)
- April 30 – Franz Lehár, Austrian composer (d. 1948)
- May 9 – Harry Vardon, English Golf Professional (d. 1937)
- May 19 – Albert Fish, American serial killer (d. 1936)
- June 13 – Jules Bordet, Belgian immunologist and microbiologist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (d. 1961)
- June 20 – Georges Dufrénoy, French post-impressionnist painter (d. 1943)
- July 3 – Richard Bedford Bennett, eleventh Prime Minister of Canada (d. 1947)
- July 12 – Louis II, Prince of Monaco (d. 1949)
- July 16 – Lambert McKenna, Irish scholar (d. 1956)
- July 25 – Maxfield Parrish, American illustrator (d. 1966)
- July 27 – Hilaire Belloc, French/English man of letters (d. 1953)
- July 29 – George Dixon, Canadian boxer (d. 1909)
- August 3 – Carrie Ingalls, younger sister of author Laura Ingalls Wilder (d. 1946)
- August 4 – Harry Lauder, Scottish entertainer (d. 1950)
- August 11 – Tom Richardson, English cricketer (d. 1912)
- August 20 – Edward Stanley Kellogg, 16th Governor of American Samoa (d. 1948)
- August 22 – Bertram Fletcher Robinson, journalist, editor and author (d. 1907)
- August 31 – Maria Montessori, Italian educator (d. 1952)
- September 25 – James A. Hawken, schoolteacher (d. 1964)
- September 26 – King Christian X of Denmark (d. 1947)
- September 30 – Jean Baptiste Perrin, French physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1942)
- October 2 – Horace Hood, British admiral (d. 1916)
- October 10 – Ivan Alekseyevich Bunin, Russian writer, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1953)
- November 21 – Sigfrid Edström, Swedish sports official (d. 1964)
- November 27 – Juho Kusti Paasikivi, Prime Minister and President of Finland (d. 1956)
- November 28 – Gustavus M. Blech, German-American physician and surgeon (d. 1949)
- December 5 – Vítězslav Novák, Czech composer (d. 1949)
- December 10 – Mary Bonaparte, pretender to the French imperial throne (d. 1947)
- December 12 – Walter Benona Sharp, American oil pioneer (d. 1912)
- December 14 – Dirk Jan de Geer, Prime Minister of the Netherlands (d. 1960)
- December 18 – Saki, English writer (d. 1916)
- August 14 – David Farragut, American admiral (b. 1801)
- August 17 – Pedro Figueredo, Cuban poet, musician, and freedom fighter (b. 1818)
- September 12 – Fitz Hugh Ludlow, American author and explorer (b. 1836)
- September 23 – Prosper Mérimée, French writer (b. 1803)
- October 12
- November 24 – Comte de Lautreamont, French poet and writer (b. 1846)
- November 28 – Frédéric Bazille, French painter (b. 1841)
- December 5 – Alexandre Dumas, père, French author (b. 1802)
- December 9 – Patrick MacDowell, Northern Irish sculptor (b. 1799)
- December 27 – General Prim, Spanish dictator (b. 1814)
- ^ Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. ISBN 0-14-102715-0.
- ^ Smith, Denis (2001). Civil Engineering Heritage: London and the Thames Valley. Thomas Telford. pp. 22–23. ISBN 0-7277-2876-8.
- ^ West, Graham (2005). Innovation and the Rise of the Tunnelling Industry. Cambridge University Press. pp. 116–118. ISBN 0-521-33512-4.