The People History

Highlights from 1800 to 1809 News, Key Events, Technology

1800, 1801, 1802, 1803, 1804, 1805, 1806, 1807, 1808 and 1809 History
1800's -- 1810 -- 1820 -- 1830 -- 1840 -- 1850 -- 1860 -- 1870 -- 1880 -- 1890 -- 1900 -- 1910





1800

Napoleon, as First Consul, marches his troops from Northern Italy into Austria. His advance to Vicuna was forestalled by a peace treaty. For his part in ending the campaign, Austria gave France their possessions in the Low Countries (Belgium) and control of the Rhine's western banks. His crossing the Alps was started by his army's move from France into Italy, and continued in his later approaches to Vienna. The Alpine farmers were helpful in Napoleon's navigation of the Saint Bernard's Pass, and a Swiss Pierre Nicholas Dorsaz was very helpful as a guide, in helping to prevent Napoleon's mule from slipping down a slope and into a crevasse. Dorsaz was rewarded 60 Louis (the coins that were still used in the Republic) for his help, and to use in the purchase of a farm.

First use of the White House, John Adams is the first President to live at the White House (which was originally called the Executive Mansion). He famously said that he had been appointed to the 'most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived.' There is some doubt on whether he was referring to the office of President, or to the White House itself. In November he wrote to Abigail Adams that 'I pray Heaven to bestow the best of blessings on this house and all that shall hereafter inhabit it.'

United States Presidential Election, John Adams - Federalist is defeated by Thomas Jefferson - Democratic-Republican who became president on

More News Events From March 4 , 1801.

Invention of the modern day battery, Alessandro Volta created the first modern battery by demonstrating that an electrical current is generated when metals and chemicals come into contact.

Library of Congress, The Library of Congress was established by Congress in 1800. It was set up as the research library of the United States Congress and the Library's primary mission was for researching inquiries made by members of Congress. The Library is open to the public and is the largest library in the world by shelf space and holds the largest number of books.

 
 

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1801

Tsar Paul I Assassinated, Paul I had been Tsar of Russia from 1796 to 1801 when he was killed in his bedchamber at the Mikhaylovsky Palace. The assassination, on March 23, was done as a means of getting his son, Alexander, onto the throne. He had declared war on France, and was working on a number of strategies against Britain. He had also been making plans to spread his country's boundaries to the east, and by doing so he had made lot of detractors in court. He has been called a martyr.

Act of Union Enacted, The Act of Union uniting England to Ireland and Scotland. The Irish Parliament had been closed, but not before both Houses had ratified the Act on March 28th, 1800. The Act was given Royal Assent on August 1 , 1800, and was enacted from January 1st, 1801. A degree of bribery, in terms of knighthood and other honors are said to have been used to get the Irish Parliament to agree to it.

The Battle of Copenhagen, The battle was started on the morning of April 2 , and the twelve British ships that took part in it were commanded by Horatio Nelson (although the fleet was commanded by an Admiral Parker). The British and Danish ships exchanged fire and all reports have commented on how heavy the fighting was. It is said that the British sailors' superior experiences in Naval gunnery are what won the battle. The Bounty's Captain Bligh was in command of the Glatton, and fought against the Danish flagship (before being replaced by Nelson's the Elephant). Nelson offered the Danes, and Crown Prince Frederik, a cessation of violence. A cease fire was agreed and Nelson landed in Copenhagen. He was awarded a viscountcy for his success. Admiral Parker's squadron were not involved in the battle, and had not been able to see the battle because of the smoke that was coming from it.

Cairo Captured, The British Army, under Sir Ralph Abercromby, had arrived in Egypt in March 1801, and set about the French troops that were in residence. Abercromby was killed outside of Alexandria, and his role taken over by Sir John Hutchinson. The British were eventually supported by relief from India and Turkey, and the thirteen thousand French soldiers that remained in Cairo were surrounded. They returned to France in the terms of the surrender treaty that was signed on June 27 .

Ultraviolet Radiation Discovered, Ultraviolet radiation was discovered by the German Johann Ritter. He had seen that silver chloride would decompose beyond the violet end of the spectrum. Whilst it is invisible to the human eye, it can be seen under certain materials, which causes the emission of light.

Thomas Jefferson Becomes President, On March 4, 1801, Thomas Jefferson became the Third President of the United States following his defeat of John Adams the year before. Thomas Jefferson had been the principal author of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

 


1802

West Point Military Academy, West Point is in Orange County, New York. Originally the United States Military Academy was the U.S. Corps of Engineers training school, but was made the U.S.M.A. by Congress on March 26, 1802. It was officially opened as such on July 4 of that year.


 


1803

The Louisiana Purchase, Before the Purchase, Louisiana had encompassed a large part of the American Mid-west, from the Mississippi to the Rockies. It was bought from France in 1803 without an amendment to the Constitution (which did not allow for the annexation of territories). Louisiana which was much larger than just Louisiana and included all of present-day Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, plus part of what are now Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, New Mexico, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado and Louisiana. The total land mass was 828,800 square miles for a total cost of 15 million dollars. At that time this doubled the size of the United States (today is about 1/4 of the countries total size). The Senate authorized the Purchase on November 29, 1803.

Railway Before Trains, One of the earliest railways was The Surrey Iron Railway, in terms of track. The Wandsworth-Croydon line allowed horse-drawn wagons to transport goods from Wandsworth to Croydon in Surrey. It was used until 1846 and the advent of the steam train. Its tracks were not capable of supporting the heavier loads that steam trains carried. The route followed the River Waddle from Wandsworth and went south to Croydon. Note that both of these areas have since become boroughs of London. The term wagonway has been used to describe the horse-drawn system.

Ohio Becomes The 17th state in the Union, Ohio was part of what was called the Northwest Territory occupying the southeastern portion and was admitted to the Union as the state of Ohio on March 1, 1803. The Anglicized name 'Ohio' comes from the Iroquois word ohi-yo’, meaning 'great river'. Ohio is the first State to join the Union from the area known as The Northwest Territory which included Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, as well as the northeastern part of Minnesota.

Britain Prepares For Possible Invasion By The French, Britain, concerned over the growth and success of French forces under the leadership of Napoleon Bonaparte, prepare for possible invasion by the French with 27,000 volunteers creating additional forces. Following the Battle Of Trafalgar under the leadership of Admiral Lord Nelson and the defeat of the French, the possibility of invasion ended.

 


1804

New Jersey Abolishes Slavery, New Jersey was the last Northern state to emancipate its slaves. It was a partial abolition, and only given to those that were born after July 4th, 1804. And even the people who were born after 1804 were still required to work for the person whose land they lived on until they were twenty-five (if male) or twenty-one (if female). This bondage would still require them to act as 'apprentices' for the people who were, or would have been, their former masters. These were paid a 'fee' by the state for their support of the children, which lessened the previous slave-owners loss of a man or woman that had reached the age at which they were able to leave. This system meant that technically free people might be sent south and sold to the still slave-owning Southerners. New Jersey's slave population was said to be about twelve thousand when the law changed.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition, The Lewis and Clark expedition started from Camp Dubois, near present day Hartford, Illinois, on May 14 , 1804 and followed the Missouri River westward. They first built and then wintered at Fort Mandan (November 1804), near present-day Washburn, North Dakota. In April they continued the journey until they reached the Entrance of the Columbia River into the Great South Sea or Pacific Ocean on November 20th, 1805. They build and set up winter camp at Fort Clatsop close to what is now called Astoria, Oregon. On March 22nd, 1806, they began the journey back arriving back in St. Louis on September 23 1806. During the expedition, they had traveled by boat, by horse and on foot. Thomas Jefferson had asked them to keep diaries and maps of the expedition and they were able to dispel the concept of there being a 'Northwest Passage.' Lewis was made a governor of what would become Louisiana, and Clark the governor of Missouri.

Napoleon Bonaparte Coronation, The coronation of Napoleon Bonaparte as Emperor of the French took place on December 2nd, 1804, and was attended by his family, citizens, ministers and foreign dignitaries (including the Pope). The event, which took place in Nôtre Dame cathedral, made him Emperor of France. He lifted the crown to his own head, and the sword of Charlemagne had been brought to Paris for him. His garments had cost 99,000 francs, and Empress Joséphine's somewhat more. Street musicians and peddlers had been brought onto the streets around the Île de la Cité in order to add to the public's delight.

Twelfth Amendment To The Constitution, The twelfth amendment changed the method of presidential elections so that members of the Electoral College cast separate ballots for president and vice president. Prior to the Twelfth Amendment Whichever candidate received the greatest number of votes, except for the one elected President, became Vice President, the problem with this was a situation could happen in which the Vice President had been a defeated electoral opponent of the President and would impede the ability of the two to effectively work together, and could provide motivation, at least in theory, for a coup d'état (since the Vice President would succeed to the office of the President upon the removal or death of the President).
The Twelfth Amendment was designed to change that, ensuring the President and Vice President would work together as a team for the good of the country.

First Working Full Size Railway Steam Locomotive, Richard Trevithick turns a high pressure steam engine designed to drive a hammer at the Pen-y-Darren Ironworks in Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales into a steam locomotive by mounting it on wheels and on the 21st of February, 1804 the world's first railway journey took place as Trevithick's unnamed steam locomotive hauled a train along the tramway of the Penydarren ironworks, near Merthyr Tydfil in south Wales.
Earlier in 1784, William Murdoch, a Scottish inventor, built a prototype steam road locomotive, and in the United States Steamboat Pioneer John Fitch had built a working model of a steam rail locomotive probably during the 1780s or 1790s.
George Stephenson is best known as the "Father of Railways." He was an English civil engineer and mechanical engineer who built the first public railway line in the world designed to use steam locomotives (the Stockton and Darlington Railway) and later built the famous "Rocket steam locomotive" ( 1829 ).

 

1805

Death Of Admiral Nelson During The Battle of Trafalgar, The Royal Navy were outnumbered by the allied French and Spain fleet that fought them off the Southwestern coast of Spain. Admirals Nelson and Collingwood led the British ships into a closely fought battle that was helped by their men's gun drills. The British use of ball, chain, link and grapeshot took a toll on the enemy fleet, who were said to have closed their gun ports rather than face the incoming fire. A note should be made of how well the Royal Navy's broadsides are said to have helped in the battle, which had commenced at dawn on October 21st. Horatio Nelson was exposed to musket shot on the deck of H.M.S. Victory, and died in the midshipmen's berth below deck. Sufficient news of the battle is said to have assured him of their victory. There were 1,587 casualties in the British fleet, and the French and Spanish ones are thought to have been around 16,000 men.

The Battle of Austerlitz, Often thought of as Napoleon's finest victory, he was able to defeat the opposing armies of Russia and Austria. It was fought on December 2nd , 1805. He had feinted the enemy into thinking that he had withdrawn from the Pratzen Heights to make them attack his right flank. When they did this he had returned to the heights and surrounded them. Their defeat had incurred a thirty percent casualty rate on them, and Alexander I of Russia withdrew his men to Poland, and Emperor Franz of Austria agreed to a peace settlement. It destroyed the Third Coalition and was called the Battle of the Three Emperors (all of whom were present).


 


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1806

Bavaria made into a kingdom, Bavaria's support of Napoleon's battles against the Russians and Austrians meant that he rewarded them by making it into a kingdom on January 1st, 1806. Its first king was Maximillian I of Wittelsbach, and his line had continued until Bavaria's agreement to end monarchal rule in 1918 (following Germany's Wilhelm II and Ludwig III). It was then that Bavaria became a Free State. Bavaria's stately homes have included Neuschwanstein, the Palace of Dachau (which Maximillian I refurbished) and Schloss Leutstetten among others.

Webster American-English Dictionary Published, Noah Webster published his first English dictionary in 1806, and followed it up with a second in 1828 (which was called An American Dictionary of the English Language). He is said to have changed the spelling of English words in order for them to be more phonetically accurate to the American accent. Noah was educated at Harvard where he studied law, and his father was Governor of Connecticut.

Elgin Marbles, Said to be about half of the statuary that have been found on the Parthenon in Greece. They are made of marble and depict mythological beasts as well as humans, and were taken from its pediments and frieze. They were shipped from Athens by the Earl of Elgin, who was acting ambassador to the Ottoman rulers of Greece. Their removal from their original setting has caused a great deal of anguish, and they have been preserved in the British Museum since the early Nineteenth Century.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition Ends, The Lewis and Clark expedition arrives back in St. Louis on September 23rd, 1806, after traveling to and returning from the Pacific Ocean. The full Lewis and Clark Expedition Journals online.


 

1807

UK abolished Slave Trade, In 1805, the British House of Commons had passed a law forbidding the capture or transport of slaves; but it was not until after the efforts of Lord Greville, William Wilberforce and Charles Fox that it was passed in the House of Lords. Its second reading in the Commons meant that it became law on March 25th, 1807. Offending captains were fined £100 per slave found on board their ships (although this could lead to slaves being thrown overboard).


 


1808

United States Presidential Election, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney - Federalist is defeated by James Madison - Democratic-Republican who became president on March 4, 1809.


 

1809

The Illinois Territory Defined, The Illinois Territory existed from 1809 with its capital at Kaskaskia, and did not become the state of Illinois until 1818. Saying which, its original boundaries had included parts of what is now Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota. It had been part of the earlier Northwest Territory until some of the other state boundaries had been changed. The Peoria, Moingwena, Kaskaskia, Menominee, Cahokia, Potawatomi and Tamaroa were some of the region's Native American tribes, among others. It is said that the immigrants' diseases, such as smallpox and measles, killed more of the tribesmen than armed conflict did.
Man-made Electrical Lighting, The first man made electrical lighting was created by Humphry Davy, a British chemist and inventor. His invention used the Battery invented by (Italian physicist Count Alessandro Volta) and it was not a light bulb as we define it today. He connected two wires from the battery to a strip of charcoal which became electrically charged and began to glow, with arcs of electricity in the air surrounding it. This is why I defined the title as "Man-made electrical lighting" and not as a light bulb.
James Madison Becomes President, March 4, 1809, James Madison became the Fourth President of the United States following his defeat of Charles Cotesworth Pinckney the year before. James Madison had been the principal author of the US Constitution created on September 17th , 1787.