Key Dates for 1848 January 24 - California Gold Rush: James W. Marshall finds gold at Sutter's Mill, in Coloma, California. February 2 - Mexican – American War: The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo is signed, ending the war and ceding to the United States virtually all of what is today the southwest of that country. February 21 - Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels publish The Communist Manifesto. February 22 - In Paris, revolt erupts against King Louis Philippe. Two days later he abdicates, leading to the Second Republic.
March 4 - Carlo Alberto di Savoia signs the Statuto Albertino that will represent the first constitution of the Kingdom of Sardinia and later of unified Italy. April 10 - A Chartist 'Monster Rally' is held in Kennington Park London, headed by Feargus O'Connor. A petition demanding the franchise is presented to parliament. May 15 - Radicals invade the French Chamber of deputies. May 18 - The first German National Assembly (Nationalversammlung) opens in Frankfurt, Germany. July 19 - Women's rights - Seneca Falls Convention: The 2-day Women's Rights Convention opens in Seneca Falls, New York and the "Bloomers" are introduced at the feminist convention.
Great Chartist Meeting on Kennington Common, April 10, 1848, photograph taken by William Kilburn. www.jbentham.com/02-works-by-benthamites/
July 26 - Matale Rebellion against British rule in Sri Lanka. July 29 - Irish Potato Famine - Tipperary Revolt: In Tipperary, an unsuccessful nationalist revolt against British rule is put- down by a government police force. August 28 - Mathieu Luis becomes the first black member to join the French Parliament as a representative of Guadaloupe. September 12 - One of the successes of the Revolutions of 1848, the Swiss Federal Constitution, patterned on the US Constitution, enters into force, creating a federal republic and one of the first modern democratic states in Europe. November 4 - France ratifies a new constitution. The Second Republic of France is set up, ending the state of temporary government lasting since the Revolution of 1848.
November 7 - U.S. presidential election, 1848: Whig Zachary Taylor of Louisiana defeats Democrat Lewis Cass of Michigan in the first US presidential election held in every state on the same day. December 2 - Emperor Ferdinand I of Austria abdicates in favor of his nephew, Franz Josef I. December 10 - Prince Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte is elected first president of the French Second Republic.
1837 William IV dies, succeeded by niece, Princess Victoria Sarah Moore. Grimke: Letters on the Equality of the Sexes and the Condition of Women. 1838 Sarah Ellis: The Women of England, Their Social Duties and Domestic Habits. Harriet Martineau: How to Observe; Morals and Manners (one of the first introductions to sociological methodology). 1839 Child Custody Act (now possible for a mother to be given custody of her children under seven). 1840 Queen marries her first cousin, Albert, Prince of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. Judge upholds a man's right to lock up his wife and beat her in moderation. Sydney Owenson Morgan: Woman and her Master, 2 volumes.
1842 Ashley's Mines Act (women and children excluded from the mines). Louis Aime-Martin: The Education of Mothers of Families; or, The Civilisation of the Human Race by Women. 1843 Association for the Aid of Milliners and Dressmakers founded. Mrs. Hugo Reid: A Plea for Woman, Being a Vindication of the Importance and Extent of her Natural Sphere of Action. 1844 Factory Act (women and children). Elizabeth Barrett: "Cry of the Children"; Poems. 1845 Margaret Fuller: Woman in the Nineteenth Century.
1846 Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot): translation of Strauss' Das Leben Jesu (Life of Jesus). Anna Jameson: "'Woman's Mission' and 'Woman's Position"' "On the Relative Social Position of Mothers and Governesses." 1847 Chloroform first used in childbirth. Factory Acts [also 1850](women and children restricted to 10 1/2 hour day). Charlotte Brontë: Jane Eyre. Emily Brontë: Wuthering Heights. Ann Brontë: Agnes Grey. 1848 Queen's College, London, established for women who intend to teach. Women's Rights Association founded in United States. Elizabeth Gaskell: Mary Barton.
1849 Bedford College for Women founded. Charlotte Brontë: Shirley. 1850 Emily Shirreff and Maria G. Grey: Thoughts on Self-Culture: Addressed to Women. First National Women's Rights Convention, Worcester, Massachusetts. 1851 Harriet Taylor: "The Enfranchisement of Women." Women's Suffrage Petition presented to the House of Lords. 1852 Judge rules that a man may not force his wife to live with him. Anna Jameson: Legends of the Madonna, as presented in the fine arts. G.H. Lewes: "The Lady Novelists."
1853 Queen Victoria given chloroform during childbirth. Charlotte Brontë: Villette. 1855 George Eliot: "Margaret Fuller and Mary Wollstonecraft." Stephen Fullom: The History of Woman, And her Connexion with Religion, Civilization, and Domestic Manners, from the earliest period (denounced by George Eliot). Elizabeth Gaskell: North and South. Harriet Martineau: Autobiography. 1856 Caroline Frances Cornwallis: "The Property of Married Women." Bessie Parkes: Remarks on the Education of Girls. Emily Shirreff: Intellectual Education, and its influence on the Character and Happiness of Women.
1857 Elizabeth Barrett Browning: Aurora Leigh. Barbara (Leigh Smith) Bodichon: Women and Work. Matrimonial Causes Act (legally separated wife given right to keep what she earns; man may divorce wife for adultery, whereas wife must prove adultery aggravated by cruelty or desertion).
Sources for timelines: Wikipedia.org Victorianweb.org Image sources given on slide pages