Elsewhere in 1897

Boston Marathon


The first Boston Marathon, the discovery of the electron, Kyoto University, Juventus F.C., The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, The play Cyrano de Bergerac, Aspirin, The Kinetoscope, The Tremont Street Subway in Boston – the first underground metro in North America.

It began in Africa

Benin is put to the torch by the British Army’s Benin Expedition.
After months of searching, generals of Menelik II of Ethiopia capture Gaki Sherocho, the last king of Kaffa, bringing an end to that ancient kingdom.
Natal annexes Zululand.
The pan-African anthem “Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika” (“God Bless Africa”) is composed as a Xhosa hymn by South African teacher Enoch Sontonga.


A Cyclone destroys Darwin, Australia.
An earthquake of magnitude of 8.0 hits Assam, killing over 1,500
A sheriff’s posse kills 19 unarmed immigrant miners in Pennsylvania.

Beyond the physical world (possibly)

Elva Zona Heaster is found dead in West Virginia – the resulting murder trial of her husband is perhaps the only capital case in United States history where spectral evidence (that is evidence revealed in a dream) helps secure a conviction.


The Klondike Gold Rush begins
The Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria
Oscar Wilde is released from prison in England and goes into exile in France.
Greece and Turkey sign a peace treaty to end the Greco-Turkish War.


Judith Anderson, Australian-born British actress (d. 1992)
Marian Anderson, American contralto (d. 1993)
Sidney Bechet, American musician (d. 1959)
Enid Blyton, British children’s writer (d. 1968)
Subhas Chandra Bose, Indian political leader, led the INA (d. 1945)
Manuel Ávila Camacho, Mexican colonel and politician, 45th President of Mexico (d. 1955)
Frank Capra, American producer, director, and writer (d. 1991)
John Cockcroft, English physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1967)
Henry Cowell, American avant-garde composer (d. 1965)
Marion Davies, American actress (d. 1961)
Eddie Eagan, American boxer and bobsledder (d. 1967)
Amelia Earhart, American aviator (d. 1937)
Anthony Eden, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1977)
Shoghi Effendi, Guardian of the Bahá’í Faith (d. 1957)
Ludwig Erhard, Chancellor of Germany (d. 1977)
William Faulkner, American writer, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1962)
Hermione Gingold, English actress (d. 1987)
Joseph Goebbels, German Nazi propagandist (d. 1945)
Edith Head, American costume designer (d. 1981)
Fletcher Henderson, American musician (d. 1952)
Sepp Herberger, German football coach (d. 1977)
Moe Howard, American comedian and actor (The Three Stooges) (d. 1975)
Irène Joliot-Curie, French physicist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (d. 1956)
Peter Llewelyn Davies, British publisher and one of the Llewelyn Davies boys (d. 1960)
Lucky Luciano, Sicilian-American Mafia boss (d. 1962)
Fredric March, American actor (d. 1975)
Elijah Muhammad, co-founder of the Nation of Islam (d. 1975)
Pola Negri, Polish-born actress (d. 1987)
Paavo Nurmi, Finnish runner (d. 1973)
Lefty O’Doul, American baseball player and restaurateur (d. 1969)
Pope Paul VI (d. 1978)
Plaek Phibunsongkhram, Thai field marshal, prime minister, and dictator (d. 1964)
Wilhelm Reich, Austrian psychotherapist (d. 1957)
Denise Robins, British romance novelist (d. 1985)
Jimmie Rodgers, American singer (d. 1933)
Gershom Scholem, German-born Israeli Jewish philosopher and historian (d. 1982)
Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky, Austrian architect and anti-Nazi activist (d. 2000)
Douglas Sirk, German-born director (d. 1987)
Charles Kingsford Smith, Australian aviator famous for his trans-Pacific flight (d. 1935)
Otto Strasser, German Nazi politician (d. 1974)
Soong Mei-ling, Chinese wife of Chiang Kai-shek (d. 2003)
George Szell, Hungarian conductor (d. 1970)
Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna of Russia (d. 1918)
Dennis Wheatley, English writer (d. 1977)
Walter Winchell, American broadcast journalist (d. 1972)
Yi Un, Korean Crown Prince (d. 1970)


Jamal ad-Din al-Afghani, Iranian teacher and writer (b. 1838)
Andrés Bonifacio, Filipino revolutionary (b. 1863)
Johannes Brahms, German composer (b. 1833)
Antonio Cánovas del Castillo, Spanish politician and historian (assassinated) (b. 1828)
Alphonse Daudet, French writer (b. 1840)
Henry Doulton, English pottery manufacturer (b. 1820)
Louisa Lane Drew, actress and theater manager (b. 1820)
Henry George, American economist (b. 1839)
Ernest Giles, Australian explorer (b. 1835)
Ion Ghica, 3-Time Prime Minister of Romania (b. 1816)
Stanislas de Guaita, French poet (b. 1861)
Edward Maitland, British writer and occultist (b. 1824)
Henri d’Orléans, Duke of Aumale (b. 1822)
Joseph S. Skerrett, American admiral (b. 1833)
Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, French Roman Catholic and Discalced Carmelite nun and saint (b. 1873)
Karl Weierstrass, German mathematician (b. 1815)

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