Beginning Year:       Ending Year:      
1767
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Politics
Boston residents agree not to import those items taxed by the Townshend Acts.
Government
With the Townshend Acts, Britain imposes taxes on imports of tea, glass, paper, and dyestuffs.
Government
Presidents: John Quincy Adams (1767-1848), sixth President of the United States, is born on July 11, in Massachusetts.
Government
Presidents: Andrew Jackson (1767-1845), seventh President of the United States, is born in Waxhaw, South Carolina on March 15.
Science
Joseph Priestly (1733-1804) proposes an electrical inverse-square law.
Inventions
The astronomer David Rittenhouse (1732-1796) invents a planetarium.
Education
The first of the weekly numbers of the "Encyclopedia Britannica" is published; 100 are planned.
Education
Higher Education: King’s College in New York City opens the second of America’s medical schools.
Education
Austrian emperor Joseph II (1741-1790) and his mother, Maria Theresa (1717-1780), introduce educational reforms.
Arts and Letters
Essay: Adam Ferguson (1723-1816) publishes "An Essay on the History of Civil Society."
Adams, Abigail
A son, John Quincy (1767-1848), is born to John and Abigail Adams on July 11th.
Jackson, Rachel
Rachel Donelson (1767-1828), is born in Virginia on June 15.
Economics
Women''s Firsts: Anne Catherine Hoof Green (c.1720-1775) takes over her late husband''s printing and newspaper business, becoming the first American woman to run a print shop.
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779) sails on the first circumnavigation of the world; he returns in June 1771.
Discovery
Starting in North Carolina, Daniel Boone (1734-1820) makes his first exploration west of the Appalachian Mountains, traveling along the present-day Kentucky-West Virginia border.
Popular Culture
American Theatre: The first professional production of a native play, 'The Prince of Parthia,' by Thomas Godfrey (1736-1763) is mounted in Philadelphia.
Religion
The Jesuits are expelled from Spain and France.
1768
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Politics
Samuel Adams (1722-1803) of Massachusetts writes a Circular Letter opposing taxation without representation.
Politics
Boston citizens refuse to quarter British troops.
Government
The Massachusetts Assembly is dissolved for refusing to assist in the collection of taxes.
Government
Native Americans: treaties are negotiated between Great Britain and the six nations of the Iroquois.
War
Revolutionary War: British troops sail to Boston, and two regiments come ashore to take up quarters in the city.
Medicine
Smallpox inoculations in Norfolk, VA cause riots.
Education
Higher Education: The medical school at Philadelphia College graduates its first physicians.
Arts and Letters
The Royal Academy is founded in London, with painter Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792) as president.
Adams, Abigail
A second daughter, Susanna (1768-1770), is born December 28 to Abigail and John Adams. The Adams family moves to Boston.
Madison, Dolley
Dolley Payne (1768-1849) is born on May 20 in Guilford County, North Carolina.
Monroe, Elizabeth
Elizabeth Kortright (1768-1830) is born on June 30 in New York City.
Economics
Sheet music is published and sold in Boston.
Economics
Anne Catherine Green (c.1720-1775) is formally appointed provincial printer for the province of Maryland.
Discovery
Explorer James Cook (1728-1779) investigates islands in the south Pacific, and observes a transit of Venus in order to determine the size of the solar system.
Daily Life
Newspapers: The "Boston Gazette" publishes “The Liberty Song,” possibly America''s first patriotic song.
Religion
The first Methodist Church is established in New York City.
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1769
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
The Privy Council in London decides to retain the duty on tea in the American colonies.
Government
The Virginia Assembly is dissolved.
Government
San Diego is founded by Franciscan Friar Juniper Serra (1713-1784).
Science
Charles Bonnet (1720-1793) suggests an evolutionary theory.
Science
New mathematical symbols, such as pi are introduced by Leonhard Euler (1707-1783).
Science
David Rittenhouse (1732-1796) plots the orbits of Venus and Mercury.
Inventions
James Watt (1736-1819) patents his steam engine.
Inventions
Frenchman Nicholas Cugnot (1725-1804) builds a steam carriage.
Education
The Academie de Coiffure is established in France by Legros de Rumigny, who teaches hairdressing and wig-making skills.
Education
The first day nursery opens at Steintal, Alsace.
Education
Higher Education: Native American Education: Dartmouth College is established to educate Native Americans.
Jefferson, Martha
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) begins building Monticello in Albemarle County, Virginia.
Madison, Dolley
Dolley Payne’s (1768-1849) father, John Payne, moves his wife and family back to his wife's family plantation at Cole's Hill, Virginia.
Economics
The first American-made printing fonts are produced by silversmith Abel Buell (1742-1822).
Economics
Henry William Stiegel (1729-1785) opens his glass works in Manheim, Pennsylvania.
Discovery
Daniel Boone (1734-1820) explores the Cumberland Gap.
Daily Life
The first lightning rod conductors are installed on high buildings.
1770
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
The British Parliament repeals the Townshend Acts, but retains the duty on tea. The Quartering Act is not renewed.
War
Revolutionary War: The “Boston Massacre” occurs.
Medicine
John Warren and several other Harvard students form a society for the secret dissection of animals; this society later becomes the Massachusetts Medical Society.
Inventions
African American Inventors: Benjamin Bannecker (1731-1806) builds a wooden clock that keeps accurate time for more than 50 years.
Education
Higher Education: The College of Charleston is established in South Carolina as the first municipal college.
Education
Leonhard Euler (1707-1783) publishes a mathematics textbook, "Introduction to Algebra."
Arts and Letters
Painting: Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) paints “The Blue Boy.”
Ideas
Edmund Burke (1729-1797) writes "Thoughts on the Causes of the Present Discontent."
Adams, Abigail
Susanna Adams (1767-1770), second daughter of Abigail and John Adams, dies at 13 months of age on February 4. It is widely reported that she was "sickly" from birth (usually a way of saying either that the cause was an unknown infection or that no one really knew what was wrong).
Adams, Abigail
A second son, Charles (1770-1800), is born to Abigail and John Adams on November 30. John Adams is asked to defend the British soldiers involved in the Boston Massacre; he does, and they are acquitted.
Economics
U.S. Population: The American colonies’ population is estimated at 2.2 million.
Economics
"The New England Psalm Singer," by William Billings (1746-1800), marks the beginning of publishing of American compositions.
Discovery
James Bruce (1730-1794) discovers the source of the Blue Nile.
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779) discovers Botany Bay in Australia.
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1771
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Science
Luigi Galvani (1737-1798) discovers the electrical nature of the nervous impulse.
Science
Joseph Priestly (1733-1804) discovers that plants convert carbon dioxide into oxygen.
Medicine
New York Hospital is founded.
Education
The Encyclopedia Britannica publishes its first edition.
Education
An edict in Spain requires the modernization of textbooks.
Ideas
The first issue of "Transactions," the journal of the American Philosophical Society, is published.
Economics
Sir Richard Arkwright (1732-1792) produces the first spinning mill in England.
Daily Life
Quaker Susanna Wright (1697-1784) acts as a legal counselor, unofficial magistrate, and physician for her neighbors in Pennsylvania.
Religion
The first separate Baptist Association was formed at a meeting in Orange County, Virginia.
1772
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Law
Slavery: An English court rules that a slave is free on landing in England.
Politics
Samuel Adams (1722-1803) forms the Committees of Correspondence in Massachusetts for action against Great Britain.
Politics
The Boston Assembly demands rights of colonies, threatens secession.
Science
Daniel Rutherford (1749-1819) and Joseph Priestly (1733-1804) discover nitrogen.
Science
Caroline Herschel (1750-1848), with her brother, William Herschel (1738-1822) assists in the first sightings of eight comets and 14 nebulae.
Science
Leonhard Euler (1707-1783) clarifies the basic principles of optics, acoustics, mechanics, and astronomy.
Inventions
John Hobday of Virginia, invents the threshing machine.
Education
The first schoolhouse west of the Allegheny Mountains is built in Schoenbrunn, Ohio, by Moravian missionaries.
Education
Higher Education: Education of Women: Women’s Colleges: Salem Academy is founded in North Carolina and is chartered as a college in 1866.
Arts and Letters
Painting: Charles Wilson Peale (1741-1827) completes a life-sized portrait of George Washington.
Adams, Abigail
A third son, Thomas Boylston (1772-1832), is born to Abigail and John Adams on September 15.
Jefferson, Martha
Martha Wayles Skelton (1748-1782) marries Thomas Jefferson on New Year's Day, when she is 23.
Jefferson, Martha
Martha "Patsy" Washington Jefferson Randolph (1772-1836), daughter of Thomas and Martha Jefferson, is born September 27.
Discovery
James Bruce (1730-1794) traces the Blue Nile to its confluence with the White Nile.
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779) leaves England on his second voyage; this time he approaches the Antarctic Circle.
Sports
The first military ski competitions are held in Norway.
Religion
The Inquisition is abolished in France.
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1773
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Politics
The Virginia House of Burgesses appoints a Provincial Committee of Correspondence.
Politics
The Boston Tea Party takes place, dumping 340 chests of tea into Boston harbor in a protest against the duty on tea.
Government
Presidents: William Henry Harrison (1773-1841), 9th Presdident of the United States, is born on February 9 in Berkeley, Virginia.
Medicine
Mental Health Movement: An early mental hospital, the Public Hospital for Persons of Insane and Disordered Minds, opens in Williamsburg, VA.
Education
Museums: The Charleston (VA) Library Society opens the first American museum of natural history.
Arts and Letters
Drama: Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774) writes the play, "She Stoops to Conquer."
Arts and Letters
Poetry: Women''s Firsts: Women''s Firsts: Black poet Phillis Wheatley (c.1753-1784) publishes "Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral," the first published works by an African American poet.
Arts and Letters
Dance: A dance class begun in Moscow later becomes the Bolshoi Ballet Company.
Washington, Martha
Martha "Patsy" Parke Custis (1754-1773), second daughter of Martha Washington and John Parke Custis, and stepdaughter of George Washington, dies suddenly of epilepsy on June 19.
Adams, Abigail
Abigail Adams (1744-1818) establishes a friendship with Mercy Warren (1728-1814), sister of James Otis (1725-1783).
Economics
Transportation: Oliver Evans (1755-1819) proposes steam-powered “horseless carriage.”
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779), captains the first ship to cross the Antarctic Circle.
Daily Life
Dancing: The waltz becomes fashionable in Vienna.
Daily Life
310 street lamps are installed and kept lighted in Boston from October to May.
Religion
Pope Clement XIV (1705-1774) dissolves the Jesuit Order.
Religion
The first annual conference of American Methodists meets in Philadelphia.
1774
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Politics
The Virginia House of Burgesses calls a Continental Congress to meet at Philadelphia.
Government
General Thomas Gage (1721-1787) arrives from England to be Royal Governor of Massachusetts.
Government
Parliament passes the Coercive Acts (Intolerable Acts); the port of Boston is closed.
War
Revolutionary War: George Washington (1732-1799) orders a military campaign against the Iroquois.
Science
Johann G. Gahn (1745-1818) isolates manganese.
Science
Karl W. Scheele (1742-1786) discovers chorine and barium.
Medicine
Austrian physician Franz Mesmer (1734-1815) uses hypnosis for health purposes.
Medicine
Native Americans: Benjamin Rush (1745-1813) describes Indian medical practices.
Inventions
Scotsman James Watt (1736-1819) builds first "modern" stationary steam engine
Education
Swiss educator Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi (1746-1827) founds a school for orphaned and neglected children in Zurich (Switzerland).
Education
Education of Women: Leonhard Usteri founds the first school for girls in Zurich, Switzerland.
Ideas
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) writes his first important work, "A Summary View of the Rights of British America."
Washington, Martha
Jacky Custis (1755-1781) leaves King's College to marry Eleanor Calvert of Maryland and settle at Abingdon, his estate up the river from Mount Vernon.
Adams, Abigail
John Adams (1735-1826) goes to the first Continental Congress.
Jefferson, Martha
Jane Randolph Jefferson (1774-1775), daughter of Thomas and Martha Jefferson, is born on April 3.
Economics
English silversmith Hester Bateman (c. 1709-1794) registers her hallmark in London’s guildhall.
Daily Life
Magazines: The Royal American Magazine is the first to use illustrations regularly, some engravings contributed by Paul Revere (1735-1818).
Sports
Cricket: The rules for cricket are first drawn up.
Religion
The Quebec Act, to secure Canada’s loyalty to Great Britain, establishes Roman Catholicism in Canada.
Religion
Anne Lee (1736-1784) of Massachusetts settles in New York to begin a spiritualist revival (the Shakers).
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1775
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
Native Americans: The Continental Congress establishes a Committee on Indian Affairs, appointing commissioners to create peace treaties with the Indians.
War
Revolutionary War: George Washington becomes Commander-in-Chief, a navy is authorized.
War
Revolutionary War: The American Revolution begins on April 19, with the battles at Lexington and Concord; the Battle of Bunker Hill follows shortly.
War
Revolutionary War: England hires 29,000 German mercenaries for war in North America.
War
Revolutionary War: Fort Ticonderoga is captured from the British.
Science
Joseph Priestley (1733-1804) discovers hydrochloric and sulfuric acids.
Medicine
Digitalis is used for the first time as a diuretic in dropsy (water retention in the body).
Medicine
Epidemics: A world-wide epidemic of influenza occurs.
Inventions
James Watt (1736-1819) perfects his invention of the steam engine.
Inventions
David Bushnell (1742-1824) invents a one-man, hand-operated submarine, the “American Turtle.”
Ideas
Edmund Burke (1729-1797) writes his “Speech on Conciliation with America.”
Ideas
Patrick Henry (1736-1799) gives his famous “Give me liberty or give me death” speech.
Washington, Martha
George Washington (1732-1799) attends the Second Continental Congress, where he accepts command of the Continental Army. In December, Martha (1731-1802) joins him at his headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Jefferson, Martha
Jane Randolph Jefferson (1774-1775), second daughter of Thomas and Martha Jefferson, dies at seventeen months in September.
Madison, Dolley
Dolley Payne (1768-1849) attends school with her brothers at the Cedar Creek Friends meetinghouse in Virginia.
Adams, Louisa
Louisa Catherine Johnson (1775-1852) is born in London on February 12. She is the first First Lady to be born outside of the United States.
Harrison, Anna
Anna Tuthill Symmes (1775-1864) is born in Flatbrook, New Jersey on July 25.
Economics
American Money: American colonists issue paper currency for the Continental Congress to finance the Revolutionary War.
Economics
The colonies supply nearly 15% of the world’s iron.
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779) returns from his second voyage.
Daily Life
The song “Yankee Doodle” becomes popular as a rallying song to taunt the British.
Daily Life
Women’s Firsts: Mary Katherine Goddard (1738-1816) became the first woman postmaster in the country (in Baltimore).
Sports
Native Americans: Indians in Florida are described as playing lacrosse, using a deerskin ball and deerskin nets on sticks.
Popular Culture
Sarah Siddons (1755-1831) appears for the first time at the Drury Lane Theatre in London.
Popular Culture
American Theatre: Colonial government regulations curb sport and entertainment during the Revolution; theatres close.
Social Issues
Slavery: Thomas Paine (1737-1806) writes "African Slavery in America."
Reform
Abolition Movement: The first abolition society in the U.S. is organized in Philadelphia by Anthony Benezet (1713-1784); Benjamin Franklin becomes its president in 1787.
Reform
Women''s Rights Movement: American political philosopher Thomas Paine (1737-1806) proposes women’s rights in an article in the Pennsylvania Magazine.
1776
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
The Declaration of Independence, drafted by The Continental Congress, is signed on July 4.
Government
The Second Continental Congress names the new nation the United States of America.
War
Revolutionary War: The British army occupies New York City.
War
Revolutionary War: George Washington (1732-1799) crosses the Delaware River, defeating the Hessian troops at Trenton, NJ.
Education
Higher Education: Phi Beta Kappa is founded at the College of William and Mary.
Arts and Letters
Edward Gibbon (1737-1794) writes "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire."
Ideas
Adam Smith (1723-1790) writes "An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations."
Ideas
Thomas Paine’s (1737-1806) "Common Sense" is published.
Adams, Abigail
Abigail Adams (1744-1818) writes a letter to John in which she tells him to “remember the ladies” when writing the Declaration of Independence.
Economics
Transportation: Railroad History: English tram road is laid down with cast iron angle bars on timber ties.
Discovery
James Cook’s (1728-1779) third voyage to the Pacific begins.
Discovery
Franciscan friars Dominguez and Escalante (1769–1779) explore route from New Mexico to California.
Daily Life
Disasters: Fire destroys most of the old parts of New York City.
Religion
San Francisco is established by Spanish missionaries.
Social Issues
Native Americans: Cherokee leader Nancy (or Nanye’hi) Ward (c. 1738-1824) heads the Woman’s Council and sits as a member of the Council of Chiefs.
Reform
Women's Suffrage Movement: New Jersey grants women the right to vote (revoked in 1807).
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1777
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
The Continental Congress adopts the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union.
Government
American Flag: On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress passes the first Flag Act which states: "That the flag of the United States be made of thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation."
War
Revolutionary War: The Marquis de Lafayette’s (1757-1834) French volunteers arrive in America.
War
Revolutionary War: British General John Burgoyne (1722-1792) is defeated and surrenders to the Americans at Saratoga, NY.
Science
Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier (1743-1794) proves that air consists mainly of oxygen and nitrogen, and coins the term oxygen.
Medicine
George Washington (1732-1799) orders his soldiers to be inoculated against smallpox.
Arts and Letters
Drama: Playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816) writes the comedy "The School for Scandal."
Jefferson, Martha
The only Jefferson son was born May 28 and died a short while later on June 14. Over the course of time, this child's name has been lost.
Economics
Women''s Firsts: Baltimore postmaster Mary Katherine Goddard (1738-1816) is the first person to print the Declaration of Independence.
Daily Life
Women’s Firsts: Mary Katherine Goddard (1738-1816) became the first printer to offer copies of the Declaration of Independence that included the signers' names.
Religion
The New Testament of the Bible is published in English for the first time in America.
Religion
The chapel of the San Juan Capistrano mission, the oldest building still in existence in California, is built.
Social Issues
Slavery: Vermont abolishes slavery, becoming the first colony to do so.
Social Issues
Civil Rights Movement: New York enfranchises all free propertied men regardless of color or prior servitude.
1778
Law, Politics, Government, and WarScience, Medicine, Inventions, and TechnologyEducation, Arts and Letters, and IdeasLives of the First LadiesEconomics, Discovery, and Daily LifeSports and Popular CultureReligion, Social Issues, and Reform
Government
Congress ratifies a treaty with France and rejects a British peace offer.
Government
Slavery: An Act of Congress prohibits the import of slaves into the U.S.
War
Revolutionary War: British Tories and Indians massacre inhabitants of Wyoming Valley, PA and Cherry Valley, NY.
War
Revolutionary War: Mary McCauley (1754-1832) (Molly Pitcher), carries water to American soldiers during the Battle of Monmouth; she then mans her husband’s cannon when he is killed.
Medicine
William Brown (1748-1792), Virginia physician, publishes "Pharmacopoeia," a guide to medicines and drugs.
Inventions
Joseph Bramah (1748-1814) from Yorkshire constructs an improved water closet (toilet).
Education
Phillips Andover Academy is founded in Massachusetts, with a broader curriculum than the Latin Grammar School.
Adams, Abigail
A sixth child is stillborn to Abigail (1744-1818) and John Adams (1735-1826).
Jefferson, Martha
Mary "Polly" "Maria" Jefferson (1778-1804), daughter of Thomas and Martha Jefferson, is born on August 1.
Economics
American Money: The dollar sign ($) is created by Oliver Pollack.
Discovery
James Cook (1728-1779) discovers Hawaii (then called the Sandwich Islands).
Social Issues
Native Americans: Frances Slocum (1773-1847) is captured by Delaware Indians; she is discovered in 1835 but refuses to return to her family, preferring to die where “the Great Spirit will find me.”
Social Issues
Slavery: Rhode Island forbids the removal of slaves from the state.
Social Issues
Slavery: Virginia prohibits the importation of slaves.
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