The Known World
Olden Time Characters
1592 William Shakespeare (1564-1616) writes Richard III, his first major work.
1593 Christopher Marlowe (b. 1564) killed in a supposed tavern brawl.
Age of Reason
1605 Narrative of Don Quixote discovered by Cervantes.
1605 Guy Fawkes (1570-1606) attempts to blow up Parliament.
1609 Henry Hudson (1570-1611) discovers New Amsterdam.
1610 Elizabeth Bathory (1560-1610) imprisoned in her castle for bathing in virgins’ blood
1631 The Great Mogul begins building the Taj Mahal as a memorial to his late wife.
1632 Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) ordered to renounce his heretical views.
1640 Cyrano de Bergerac (b. 1619-1655) woos Roxane via Christian de Neuvillette.
1641 Captain Falkenberg of the Flying Dutchman vows to round the Cape of Good Hope if it takes until Judgement Day.
1644 Matthew Hopkins becomes Witchfinder General (and is himself burned as a witch in 1647).
1649 King Charles executed
1653 Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) becomes Lord Protector
1652 Robinson Crusoe is marooned on an island off the coast of South America.
1657 [[Cyrano de Bergerac] travels to the Moon.
1666 Isaac Newton (1643-1727) hit by apple, discovers gravity.
1666 Great London Fire 1674 Even Old New York was once New Amsterdam. Governor General Peter Stuyvesant] forced to step down.
1681 Pennsylvania founded by William Penn as a refuge for Quakers.
1682 Louis XIV (1638-1715) moves the court to Versailles
1683 Moll Flanders (born c. 1613) writes her memoirs.
1686 [[Robinson Crusoe returns to Europe along with Friday, his Indian companion.
1691 Captain William Kidd (1654-1701) sets sail as a privateer.
1698 The Man in the Iron Mask imprisoned in Bastille.
1698 Stradivarius begins making his classic violins.
1698 Birth of Carmilla Karnstein, who later becomes a vampire. (She is destroyed before 1862.)
1699 Lemuel Gulliver (1660-1727+) shipwrecked on Lilliput, where he remains until 1701.
1703 Peter the Great (1672-1725) founds Saint Petersburg.
1711 Rob Roy McGregor (1671-1734) becomes an outlaw.
1713 Varney the Vampire throws himself into Mount Vesuvius.
1716 Edward “Blackbeard” Teach (1680-1718) becomes a pirate captain.
1720 Jack Sparrow recaptures the Black Pearl.
1752 Ben Franklin (1706-1790) flies his kite.
1737 Baron Munchhausen (b. 1720-1797) begins his adventures.
1737 Comte D’erlette publishes Cultes des Goules.
1738 George Washington (1732-1799) cuts down a cherry tree; admits it.
1739 Dick Turpin hanged at York as a horse thief.
1741 Giacomo Casanova (1725-1798) begins his career of seduction.
1742 Tom Jones’ picaresque adventures
1757 Natty Bumppo (1717-1804) fights alongside the last of the Mohicans.
1759 Adventures of Candide and Dr. Pangloss
1762 Catherine the Great (1729-1796) becomes Empress of Russia.
1763 The Marquis de Sade (1740-1814) begins his life of libertinage.
1765 John Montagu, Earl of Sandwich (1718-1792), invents the sandwich to facilitate gambling.
1768 Captain James Cook (1728-1779) makes his first voyage to the Pacific.
1773 The Boston Tea Party, in which the Sons of Liberty, dressed as Indians and led by Sam Adams (1722-1803), dumped tea into Boston Harbor in protest of British trade policies.
1774 Marie Antoinette (1755-1793) declares, “Let them eat cake!”
1775 Daniel Boone (1734-1820) blazes the Wilderness Road through the Cumberland Gap to open Kentucky to pioneers.
1775 Silversmith Paul Revere (1734-1818) rides to Lexington to warn “The British are coming!”
1775 Patrick Henry (1736-1799) declares, “Give me liberty or give me death!”
1775 Ethan Allen (1738-1789) captures Ticonderoga with his Green Mountain Boys (and Benedict Arnold).
1776 Thomas Paine (1737-1809) publishes Common Sense.
1776 Nathan Hale (b. 1755), revolutionary spy, regrets that he has but one life to give to his country.
1776 Betsy Ross (1752-1836) sews the first American flag.
1776 Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, signed in Philadelphia by John Hancock and others.
1776 Adam Weishaupt (1748-1830) founds the Bavarian Illuminati.
1776 Adam Smith writes The Wealth of Nations.
1776 Washington crosses the Delaware to attack the Hessians at the Battle of Trenton.
1777 Washington camps at Valley Forge for the winter.
1780 Francis Marion earns the nickname The Swamp Fox.
1780 L’Estat becomes a vampire.
Lord Cornwallis surrenders to the Marquis de Lafayette.
1785 The alchemist Comte de Cagliostro (1743?-1795?) is implicated in the Affair of the Diamond Necklace (belonging to Marie Antoinette). His birth may be much, much earlier than the date given in records, and it’s unclear whether he has ever died.
1785 Blair Witch active in Maryland.
1787 Thomas Jefferson summons Sally Hemings to live with him in Paris.
1789 Dr Guillotin proposes the use of the device that now bears his name.
1792 Victor Frankenstein (1770-1799) creates his Monster
1792 Mike Fink (1780-1823) establishes himself as the best shooter in Ohio. He becomes the King of the Riverboats on the Ohio River.
1793 Maximilien Robespierre (1758-1794) launches the Reign of Terror. Sir Percy Blakeney becomes the Scarlet Pimpernel to rescue French aristocrats from the guillotine and Citizen Chauvelin.
1794 Toussaint L’Ouverture (1743-1803) wins freedom for the slaves of Haiti.
1794 Whiskey Rebellion
1795 Louis XVII, the Lost Dauphin (b. 1785), smuggled out of France.
1795 British dandy Beau Brummel popularizes the necktie.
1796 Jean Valjean imprisoned in the Toulon Penitentiary
1798 Malthus predicts that population will outrun the food supply.
 Napoleonic Era
1799 Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) becomes first consul of the French Republic.
1799 Davy Crockett (1786-1836) runs away from home to become King of the Wild Frontier.
1800 John Adams becomes the first president to move into the White House, though he shortly has to move out.
1800[[ Thomas Jefferson elected president.
1801 Johnny Appleseed (1776-1847) begins planting apple trees in the Ohio wilderness.
1804-1806 Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809) and William Clark (1770-1838), led by their Indian guide Sacagawea (1787-1812), explore the new Louisiana Purchase on a cross-continental expedition.
1804 Napoleon becomes Emperor of France, with Josephine as his empress.
1806 Don Diego de la Vega (b. 1782) assumes the identity of Zorro to combat the tyrannical Spanish government of California.
1806 Jean Lafitte (d. 1826) begins his career as a pirate, operating out of Grand Terre island, south of New Orleans.
1806 Zebulon Pike spots Pike’s Peak.
1808 James Madison elected president; Dolly Madison becomes first lady.
1809 Abraham Lincoln born in a log cabin.
1809-1849 Edgar Allan Poe
1810 Napoleon divorces Josephine.
1811 Luddites, led by General Ned Ludd, begin campaign of sabotage in Nottingham.
1812 Napoleon invades Russia.
1812 Lord Byron (1788-1824) begins his poetic career.
1812 War of 1812 begins.
1814 The British burn the White House; Dolly Madison flees with George Washington’s portrait.
1814 Pirate Jean Lafitte (1780-1826) helps Col. Andrew Jackson win the Battle of New Orleans.
1814 Napoleon forced to abdicate; exiled to Elba.
1814 Metternich (1773-1859) orchestrates the Congress of Vienna.
1815 Napoleon escapes from Elba and is finally defeated at the Battle of Waterloo.
1815 Edmond Dantes falsely imprisoned in the Chateau d’If.
1815 Mike Fink leaves the Ohio River when it becomes too civilized.
1819 Simon Bolivar proclaims the republic of Gran Columbia.
1819 The vampire Lord Ruthven appears in London society.
1823 Texas Rangers founded.
1823 Mike Fink dies on the Yellowstone River.
1823 President James Monroe[ declares his doctrine.
1823 Lord Byron fights for Greek independence.
1827 Joseph Smith receives golden plates from the angel Moroni.
1828 Andrew Jackson elected president; mobs enter White House.
1828 Davy Crockett elected to Congress.
1828 First prisoners sent up the river to Sing Sing in upstate New York.
1829 Dantes escapes from d’If, obtains the treasure of Monte Cristo.
1831 Nat Turner’s rebellion.
1831 Alexis de Tocqueville tours America
1831 Charles Darwin sets off in The Beagle, which reaches the Galapagos in 1835 and returns to England in 1836.
1832 Birth of Pecos Bill
1835 Oliver Twist is educated by Fagin and the Artful Dodger.
1836 Davy Crockett (b. 1786) and Jim Bowie (b. 1796) killed at the Battle of the Alamo.
1836 Sam Houston defeats Santa Anna to found the Lone Star Republic.
1836 Abraham Lincoln becomes a lawyer.
1836 Friedrich von Junzt (1795-1840) writes Unaussprechlichen Kulten.
1837 Queen Victoria becomes ruler of the British Empire.
1839 Dantes appears in Paris as the Count of Monte Cristo.
1839 The Amistad mutiny.
1840 Opium Wars begin in China.
1841 A series of murders on Paris’ Rue Morgue are solved by the detective August Dupin.
1842 Pioneers begin using the Oregon Trail from Independence, Missouri to Oregon City.
1842 Ada Byron helps Charles Babbage invent the computer.
1844 Great auk extinct.
1845 Henry David Thoreau moves to Walden Pond.
1845 Dr. John Dolittle learns to talk to animals.
1845 Birth of Albus Dumbledore.
1846 California Republic proclaimed
1846-48 Mexican-American War
1847 Deseret founded as Mormon homeland by Brigham Young.
1847 The Irish potato famine begins.
1848 Karl Marx and Frederich Engels publish the Communist Manifesto.
1849 California Gold Rush. Death of Darling Clementine.
1849 Harriet Tubman begins rescuing slaves in Maryland.
1850 Allan Pinkerton (1819-84) establishes his detective agency.
1852 Devil’s Island opens as a French penal colony, closing in 1946.
1852 The Rock Island Line begins running between Chicago and Rock Island, Illinois.
1854 Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) nurses British troops during the Crimean War.
1854 Chief Seattle declares that “all things are connected.”
1858 Geronimo (1829-1909) goes on warpath to avenge his wife; captured 1886.
1858 Sir Richard Burton discovers the Mountains of the Moon.
1858 Lincoln debates Douglas.
1859 Charles Darwin publishes The Origin of Species.
1859 Norton I proclaims himself Emperor of These United States and Protector of Mexico.
1859 John Brown’s raid on Harper’s Ferry
1860 Pony Express established
Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe
1860 Abraham Lincoln elected president.
1861 Battle of Fort Sumter starts U.S. Civil War.
1862 Alice Liddell goes down the rabbit hole to Wonderland.
1862 Anna Leonowens becomes tutor to the children of the King of Siam.
1862 House of the Rising Sun opens in New Orleans
1862 Battle of Antietam
1863 Professor Axel Lindenbrock makes a journey to the center of the Earth.
1863 Emancipation Proclamation
1863 Death of Stonewall Jackson
1863 Battle of Gettysburg
1864 General Tso defeats the Taiping Rebellion.
1865 Lee surrenders to Grant at Appomattox.
1865 John Wilkes Booth assassinates Lincoln.
1866 John Carter is transported to Barsoom.
Propaganda of the Deed
1865 A cannon fired from Florida sends three explorers from the Earth to the Moon.
1865 Nemo conducting biological experiments on the Mysterious Island (34°57′S 150°30′W about 2,500 km east of New Zealand).
1866 Using the advanced submarine Nautilus, Captain Nemo begins a campaign of terror against all sea powers.
Jules Verne (1828-1905)
1867-1882 Former Confederate spy Jesse James (b. 1847) leads a gang of outlaws in a series of spectacular crimes, including the great Northfield, Minnesota raid of 1876. Though officially killed in 1882, James was reportedly seen as late as 1948.
1867 Beginning of the commercial buffalo hunt.
1868 Scarlett O’Hara marries Rhett Butler.
1868 Buffalo Bill Cody wins his nickname in a buffalo-killing contest.
1868 Ulysses S Grant elected president.
1869 Leland Stanford hammers the Golden Spike to complete the transcontinental railroad.
1870 Calamity Jane (1852-1903) becomes a scout for Gen. George Custer.
1871 Paris Commune established.
1871 Prince Otto von Bismarck (1815-1898) becomes chancellor of the German Empire (until 1890).
1871 Mrs. O’Leary’s cow starts the Great Chicago Fire.
1871 As Marshal of Abilene, Kansas, Wild Bill Hickok disarms John Wesley Hardin.
1872 Phileas Fogg circumnavigates the globe in 80 days.
1872 Mikhail Bakunin (1814-1876) splits with Marx at the First International
1873 Dorian Gray (1853-1891) has his picture painted.
1874 John Reid (b. 1850), the only survivor of a massacred band of Texas Rangers, adopts the persona of the Lone Ranger in order to pursue the killers.
1874 The Marie Celeste is found floating off the coast of Portugal, its crew mysteriously vanished.
1876 Gen. George Custer killed at the Battle of Little Big Horn by Lakota Indians led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse.
1877 Chief Joseph (1840-1904) of the Nez Perce declares, “I will fight no more forever.”
1877 Thomas Edison (1847-1931) invents the phonograph, his first major invention.
1877 Hanging of the Molly McGuires
1878 Start of the Hatfield/McCoy feud across the Kentucky/West Virginia border, which continues until 1891.
1878 Ned Kelly (1854-1880) goes into hiding in the Outback.
1879 Zulu war.
1880 A phantom terrorizes the French Opera.
1881 Sherlock Holmes (1854-1957) meets Dr. James Watson
1881 Billy the Kid (William Bonney, b. 1861) shot and killed by Sheriff Pat Garrett.
1881 John Henry “Doc” Holliday (1851-1887) and Wyatt Earp (1848-1929) win a gunfight at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Ariz.
1882 Judge Roy Bean becomes the Law West of the Pecos.
1882 Nietzsche (1844-1900) declares God is dead.
1883 Extinction of the quagga.
1883 Dinah working on the railroad, blowing her horn.
1884 Allan Quartermain (b. 1830) discovers King Solomon’s Mines.
1884 The Buffalo virtually extinct.
1885 Annie Oakley joins Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West show.
1886 Dr. Henry Jekyll is the victim of his own strange experiments.
1887 John Henry (b. 1844) dies in a contest with a steam engine.
1887 Holmes encounters Irene Adler.
1887 Revolution on the Island of Dr. Moreau.
1889-1890 New York World reporter Nelly Bly bests Fogg’s time by crossing the globe in 72 days.
1888 Mighty Casey strikes out in Mudville, Massachusetts.
1888-1946+ The infant Lord Graystone is adopted by gorillas and becomes Tarzan of the Apes.
Sheena, Queen of the Jungle
1888 Jack the Ripper murders
1888 Holmes is forced to consult with his brother Mycroft Holmes, who is highly placed in British intelligence.
1889 Marlow travels up the Congo with a Polish-born steamship captain named Joseph Conrad to encounter a megalomaniacal colonist named Kurtz.
1889 Completion of the Eiffel Tower
1889 The Johnstown Flood