Skip to main content

1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Chronology

1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Chronology




  • The sport of gouging is at its peak of popularity in the Ohio River valley.
  • The population of North America reaches an estimated thirteen million.
  • 1 May Congress creates the Indiana and Ohio Territories.
  • 1 Oct. Spain cedes the Louisiana Territory to France in the secret Treaty of San Ildefonso.



  • The Spanish colonial administrator of New Orleans prohibits American use of the port.





  • The Clermont begins regular steamboat service on the Hudson River.


  • Sequoyah begins work on a syllabary to create a written form of the Cherokee language.


  • The American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions is created.
  • 23 June Wilson Price Hunt and a band of fur traders establish the first permanent U.S. settlement on the Pacific Coast, at Fort Astoria in modern Oregon.



  • 5 Oct. Tecumseh dies at the Battle of the Thames.



  • 11 Dec. Indiana joins the Union as the nineteenth state.


  • 4 July Construction begins on the Erie Canal.
  • 10 Dec. Mississippi joins the Union as the twentieth state.


  • 3 Dec. Illinois joins the Union as the twenty-first state.


  • Congress organizes the Arkansas Territory from areas of the Missouri Territory.


  • Cherokees create a republican government with a principal chief, a senate, and a house of representatives.


  • Mexico becomes independent from Spain.
  • William Becknell opens the Santa Fe Trail.
  • 10 Aug. Missouri enters the Union as the twenty-fourth state.


  • Stephen Austin founds the first American community in Texas.



  • William Ashley organizes the Green River Rendezvous for fur trappers.
  • 26 Oct. The Erie Canal opens.


  • 5 Feb. Led by Robert Owen, a Utopian socialist community at New Harmony, Indiana, draws up a constitution.


  • Cherokees draw up a written constitution.
  • 15 Nov. Creek Indians cede their remaining lands to the U.S. government.


  • Mexico abolishes slavery.


  • Over the next decade, artists George Catlin, Carl Bodmer, and Alfred Jacob Miller travel in the West.
  • Mexico closes Texas to further American immigration.
  • 30 June Congress passes the Indian Removal Act.


  • The Supreme Court rules in Cherokee Nation v. Georgia that the Cherokees have a legal right to their own lands.
  • Catharine Beecher publishes A Course of Calisthenics for Young Ladies, encouraging exercise for women to prepare them for their roles as wives and mothers.


  • A cholera epidemic strikes the United States, killing some six thousand in New Orleans and unknown numbers among the Plains tribes.
  • In Worcester v. Georgia the Supreme Court holds that the Cherokee nation has not given up its right to control its own territory.


  • John Deere invents the first American steel plow.


  • A Protestant mission opens in Oregons Willamette Valley.
  • Cyrus McCormick patents the mechanical reaper.


  • Western wheat crops fail.


  • Congress organizes the Wisconsin Territory.
  • 2 Mar. Texas declares independence from Mexico and adopts a constitution.
  • 15 June Arkansas joins the Union as the twenty-fifth state.
  • 22 Oct. Sam Houston becomes the first president of the Republic of Texas.
  • Nov. The Shawnee Prophet, Tenskwatawa, dies in Kansas.


  • Epidemic diseases strike the Plains tribes.
  • 26 Jan. Michigan joins the Union as the twenty-sixth state.


  • 1 Oct. The removal of the Cherokees begins. By the time they reach their destination in the Indian Territory, some four thousand will have died.


  • The Boys and Girls Book of Sports is published in Providence, Rhode Island. It includes rules for games such as tag, jump rope, and base, or goal ball.


  • Birling, in which contestants on a floating log try to keep their balance while spinning the log with their feet, is a popular sport in lumber camps in Canada and the Northern states.
  • Over the next twenty years Norwegian immigrants introduce skiing to the United States.


  • The Preemption Law recognizes squatters rights to land.
  • Schreiners Sporting Manual: A Complete Treatise on Fishing, Fowling, and Hunting, as Applicable to the Country is published in Philadelphia.


  • 12 July Joseph Smith announces that he has had a divine revelation sanctioning polygamy.


  • A mob in Illinois kills Joseph Smith and his brother Hiram.


  • Congress votes to annex Texas, which joins the Union as a slave state.


  • Mormon migration to Utah begins.
  • John C. Frémont proclaims the Bear Flag Republic in California.
  • Congress ends joint occupation of Oregon.
  • 13 May Congress declares war on Mexico.
  • 10 Sept. Elias Howe receives a patent for his sewing machine.
  • Dec. A winter storm traps a group of settlers led by Jacob and George Donner in the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California. By the following February only 45 of the original 87 members are alive. The survivors had practiced cannibalism on those who had died.
  • 28 Dec. Iowa joins the Union as the twenty-ninth state.


  • Cayuse Indians kill Marcus and Narcissa Whitman.
  • Mormons arrive in Utah and found Salt Lake City.


  • The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo is signed, ending the Mexican War and adding 1.2 million square miles of land to the United States.
  • Friedrich Hecker founds the first American Turnverein, a gymnastic and social club, in Cincinnati.
  • 24 Jan. James Wilson Marshall discovers gold at Sutters Mill, about forty-five miles northeast of Sacramento, California.
  • 2 Feb. California becomes a U.S. territory.
  • 29 May Wisconsin joins the Union as the thirtieth state.


  • A major cholera epidemic strikes the United States.
  • California applies for admission to the Union as a free state.


  • Scandinavian gold miners in California form the first ski clubs in the United States.
  • 2 June. A series of fires destroys several million dollars worth of property in San Francisco.



  • Congress establishes the Oregon Territory.


  • A San Francisco club introduces the Irish sport of hurling to the United States.
  • A yellow-fever epidemic kills more than five thousand in New Orleans.




  • Mormon leaders furnish handcarts to immigrants who intend to cross the plains.
  • 24 May John Brown and his sons kill five proslavery men at Pottawatomie Creek in Kansas.


  • U.S. troops are sent to Utah to put down a Mormon rebellion.
  • An expedition led by Albert Sidney Johnston and guided by James Bridger explores the Yellowstone River valley.


  • John Butterfield opens an overland stage route.
  • 2 May Marathon horse riding is the craze in California. John Powers rides 150 miles on a racetrack in 6 hours, 43 minutes, and 31 seconds. He uses twenty-five mustangs and wins a $5,000 bet.
  • 11 May Minnesota enters the United States as the thirty-second state.



  • 22 Feb. The first known organized baseball game is played in San Francisco.
  • 3 Apr. William F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) leaves St. Joseph, Missouri, carrying mail on the Pony Express.
  • 6 May San Franciscans found The Olympic Club of San Francisco, the oldest American club dedicated to athletics.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Chronology." American Eras. . (January 19, 2019).

"1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Chronology." American Eras. . Retrieved January 19, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.