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Chronological List of US History Events 1850-1899

  • May 30, 1850 – The Kansas Territory is organized.
  • May 30, 1850 – The Nebraska Territory is organized.
  • July 10, 1850 – Millard Fillmore is sworn in as the 13th President of the United States.
  • September 9, 1850 – California is the 31st state admitted to the Union. Congress hesitated to welcome a new free state, but because of its booming population and the discovery of gold California was admitted in September 9, 1850.
  • September 9, 1850 – The Utah Territory is organized.
  • September 18, 1850 – The Fugitive Slave Act is passed by Congress, requiring the return of escaped slaves.
  • March 2, 1853 – The Washington Territory is organized.
  • March 2, 1853 – The Oregon Territory is organized.
  • March 4, 1853 – Franklin Pierce is sworn in as the 14th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1853 – William King is sworn in as the 13th Vice President of the United States.
  • December 30, 1853 – The United States purchases what is now part of Arizona and New Mexico.
  • March 4, 1857 – James Buchanan is sworn in as the 15th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1857 – John Breckinridge is sworn in as the 14th Vice President of the United States.
  • May 11, 1858 – Minnesota is the 32nd state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 86,943 sq. miles

  • Capital – St. Paul

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • February 14, 1859 – Oregon is the 33rd state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 97,093 sq. miles

  • Capital – Salem

  • 2000 Population –

 

Secession

 

  • December 20, 1860 – South Carolina is the 1st state to secede from the Union.
  • January 9, 1861 – Mississippi is the 2nd state to secede from the Union.
  • January 10, 1861 – Florida is the 3rd state to secede from the Union.
  • January 11, 1861 – Alabama is the 4th state to secede from the Union.
  • January 19, 1861 – Georgia is the 5th state to secede from the Union.
  • January 26, 1861 – Louisiana is the 6th state to secede from the Union.
  • January 29, 1861 – Kansas is the 34th state admitted to the Union. Kansas became a free state on January 29, 1861, after seven years of bloody feuding between residents over whether to be admitted as a slave or free state.

  • Area – 82,282 sq. miles

  • Capital – Topeka

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • February 4, 1861 – The Confederate States of America is formed.
  • February 4, 1861 – The Apache declare war on the United States.
  • February 13, 1861 – The 1st Congressional Medal is presented to Col. Bernard Irwin.
  • February 18, 1861 – Jefferson Davis is sworn in as the 1st President of the Confederate States of America
  • February 18, 1861 – Alexander Stevens is sworn in as the 1st Vice President of the Confederate States of America.
  • February 22, 1861 – The Nevada Territory is organized.
  • February 23, 1861 – Texas is the 7th state to secede from the Union.
  • February 28, 1861 – The Colorado Territory is organized.
  • March 2, 1861 – The Dakota Territory is organized.
  • March 4, 1861 – Abraham Lincoln is sworn in as the 16th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1861 – Hannibal Hamlin is sworn in as the 15th Vice President of the United States.
  • March 11, 1861 – The Confederate Congress adopts their Constitution.
  • April 12, 1861 – Confederate forces begin an assault on Fort Sumter.
  • April 13, 1861 – After 34 hours of bombardment, Fort Sumter surrenders.
  • April 17, 1861 – Virginia is the 8th state to secede from the Union.
  • April 19, 1861 – Union blockade of Confederate ports is initiated (1st part of the Anaconda Plan).
  • April 27, 1861 – 48 counties in western Virginia secede to rejoin the Union (reducing Virginia’s size to 42,326sq. miles).
  • May 6, 1861 – Arkansas is the 9th state to secede from the Union.

 

The Civil War

 

  • May 6, 1861 – President Abraham Lincoln declares a state of insurrection in the southern states.
  • May 21, 1861 – North Carolina is the 10th state to secede from the Union.
  • May 21, 1861 – Richmond, VA. becomes the official capital city of the Confederate States.
  • June 8, 1861 – Tennessee is the 11th state to secede from the Union.
  • July 21, 1861 – Confederate forces win the 1st Battle of Bull Run.
  • October 22, 1861 – The transcontinental telegraph is completed.
  • March 9, 1862 – The 1st ironclads, the Monitor and the Merrimack , meet at the Battle of the James River (resulting in a Union victory).
  • April 7, 1862 – Union forces win the Battle of Shiloh.
  • April 14, 1862 – Union forces begin the Penninsula Campaign.
  • August 30, 1862 – Confederate forces win the 2nd Battle of Bull Run.
  • September 17, 1862 – Union forces win the Battle of Antietam.
  • September 22, 1862 – The Emancipation Proclomation is issued.
  • December 13, 1862 – Confederate forces win the Battle of Fredericksburg.
  • February 24, 1863 – The New Mexico Territory is organized.
  • February 24, 1863 – The Arizona Territory is organized.
  • May 4, 1863 – Confederate forces win the Battle of Chancellorsville.
  • June 20, 1863 – West Virginia is the 35th state admitted to the Union. On June 20, 1863, the wartime state of West Virginia was born by acceptance of the federal government.

  • Area – 24,232 sq. miles

  • Capital – Charleston

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • July 1, 1863 – The Battle of Ghettysburg begins.
  • July 3, 1863 – Union forces win the Battle Ghettysburg.
  • July 4, 1863 – Union forces capture Vicksburg, thereby taking the entire Mississippi River (2nd part of the Anaconda Plan).
  • November 25, 1863 – Union forces win the Battle of Chattanooga.
  • May 26, 1864 – The Idaho Territory is organized.
  • May 26, 1864 – The Montana Territory is organized.
  • September 1, 1864 – Union forces take Atlanta.
  • October 31, 1864 – Nevada is the 36th state admitted to the Union. On October 31, 1864, at the urging of President Abraham Lincoln, Nevada became a state. Only a short four years earlier, it had been a wilderness.

  • Area – 110,567 sq. miles

  • Capital – Carson City

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • November 16, 1864 – Union forces begin the “march to the sea”, from Atlanta to Savanah.
  • February 1, 1865 – The 13th Amendment is passed by Congress.
  • March 4, 1865 – Abraham Lincoln is sworn in as President for a 2nd term.
  • March 4, 1865 – Andrew Johnson is sworn in as the 16th Vice President of the United States.
  • March 21, 1865 – Union forces finish the “march to the sea” (by taking Savanah, Georgia).
  • April 2, 1865 – The fleeing Confederate government sets fire to Richmond.
  • April 3, 1865 – Union forces occupy the Confederate capital, Richmond (3rd part of the Anaconda Plan).
  • April 9, 1865 – The Confederate States of America surrender at Appomattox Courthouse, ending the Civil War.

 

Reconstruction

 

  • April 15, 1865 – Andrew Johnson is sworn in as the 17th President of the United States.
  • December 18, 1865 – The 13th Amendment is added to the Constitution. Jun 16, 1866 – The 14th Amendment is passed by Congress.
  • July 24, 1866 – Tennessee is the 1st state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • March 1, 1867 – Nebraska is the 37th state admitted to the Union. President Andrew Johnson vetoed the Nebraska statehood bill of 1866, but Congress overrode his veto, and Nebraska became a state on March 1, 1867

  • Area – 77,359 sq. miles

  • Capital – Lincoln

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • March 30, 1867 – The United States purchases the Alaska Territory from Russia for $7.2 million.
  • August 28, 1867 – The U.S. annexes the Midway Islands.
  • January 7, 1868 – The Arkansas constitutional convention meets in Little Rock.
  • January 7, 1868 – The Mississippi constitutional convention meets in Jackson.
  • January 14, 1868 – The North Carolina constitutional convention meets in Raliegh.
  • January 14, 1868 – The South Carolina constitutional convention meets in Columbia.
  • February 24, 1868 – The U.S. House of Representatives impeaches President Andrew Johnson.
  • March 13, 1868 – The U.S. Senate begins its Impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson
  • April 14, 1868 – South Carolina adopts a new constitution.
  • April 16, 1868 – Louisiana adopts a new constitution.
  • May 26, 1868 – The U.S. Senate acquits President Andrew Johnson of all 11 Articles of Impeachment.
  • June 1, 1868 – The Texas constitutional convention meets in Austin.
  • June 22, 1868 – Arkansas is the 2nd state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • June 25, 1868 – Florida is the 3rd state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • June 25, 1868 – Alabama is the 4th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • June 25, 1868 – Louisiana is the 5th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • June 25, 1868 – North Carolina is 6the th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • June 25, 1868 – South Carolina is 7the th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • July 23, 1868 – The 14th Amendment is added to the Constitution.
  • July 25, 1868 – The Wyoming Territory is organized.
  • December 25, 1868 – President Andrew Johnson issues an unconditional pardon to all those who participated in the southern rebellion.
  • February 27, 1869 – The 15th Amendment is passed by Congress.
  • March 4, 1869 – Ulysses Grant is sworn in as the 18th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1869 – Schuyler Colfax is sworn in as the 17th Vice President of the United States.
  • April 10, 1869 – The number of Supreme Court Justices is increased from 7 to 9.
  • May 10, 1869 – The Transcontinental Railroad is completed at Promontory Point, Utah.
  • November 17, 1869 – The Suez Canal opens for business, in Egypt, linking the Mediterranean and Red seas.
  • January 27, 1870 – Virginia is the 8th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • February 23, 1870 – Mississippi is the 9th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • March 30, 1870 – Texas is the 10th state to be readmitted to the Union.
  • March 30, 1870 – The 15th Amendment is added to the Constitution.
  • July 15, 1870 – Georgia is the 11th state to be readmitted to the Union.

 

Expansion

 

  • August 1, 1870 – Colorado is the 38th state admitted to the Union. After three tries Colorado was made a state on August 1, 1876.

  • Area – 104,100 sq. miles

  • Capital – Denver

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • March 4, 1873 – Ulysses Grant is sworn in as President for a 2nd term.
  • March 4, 1873 – Henry Wilson is sworn in as the 18th Vice President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1877 – William Wheeler is sworn in as the 19th Vice President of the United States.
  • March 5, 1877 – Rutherford Hayes is sworn in as the 19th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1881 – James Garfield is sworn in as the 20th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1881 – Chester Arthur is sworn in as the 20th Vice President of the United States.
  • September 20, 1881 – Chester Arthur is sworn in as the 21st President of the United States.
  • May 17, 1884 – The Alaska Territory is organized.
  • March 4, 1885 – Grover Cleveland is sworn in as the 22nd President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1885 – Thomas Hendricks is sworn in as the 21st Vice President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1889 – Benjamin Harrison is sworn in as the 23rd President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1889 – Levi Morton is sworn in as the 22nd Vice President of the United States.
  • November 2, 1889 – North Dakota is the 39th state admitted to the Union. Both North and South Dakota became states on November 2, 1889.

  • Area – 70,704 sq. miles

  • Capital – Bismarck

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • November 2, 1889 – South Dakota is the 40th state admitted to the Union. Both North and South Dakota became states on November 2, 1889.

  • Area – 77,121 sq. miles

  • Capital – Pierre

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • November 8, 1889 – Montana is the 41st state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 147,046 sq. miles

  • Capital – Helena

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • November 11, 1889 – Washington is the 42nd state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 70,637 sq. miles

  • Capital – Olympia

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • May 2, 1890 – The Oklahoma Territory is organized.
  • July 3, 1890 – Idaho is the 43rd state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 83,574 sq. miles

  • Capital – Boise

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • July 10, 1890 – Wyoming is the 44th state admitted to the Union. Although the Wyoming population was not enough to qualify for statehood, it became one anyway on July 10, 1890.

  • Area – 97,819 sq. miles

  • Capital – Cheyenne

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • March 4, 1893 – Grover Cleveland is sworn in as the 24th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1893 – Adlai Stevenson is sworn in as the 23rd Vice President of the United States.

January 4, 1896 – Utah is the 45th state admitted to the Union.

  • Area – 84,904 sq. miles

  • Capital – Salt Lake City

  • 2000 Population –

 

  • March 4, 1897 – William McKinley is sworn in as the 25th President of the United States.
  • March 4, 1897 – Garret Hobart is sworn in as the 24th Vice President of the United States.

 

The Spanish-American War

 

  • April 20, 1898 – The United States declares war on Spain.
  • May 1, 1898 – American forces win the Battle of Manila Bay.
  • July 1, 1898 – American forces win the Battle of Santiago.
  • July 7, 1898 – The United States annexes Hawaii.
  • July 25, 1898 – American forces invade Puerto Rico.
  • August 12, 1898 – The United States and Spain sign an armistice, ending the Spanish-American War.
  • December 10, 1898 – The United States and Spain sign the Treaty of Paris 1898, officially ending the Spanish-American War.
 
 
 

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