and Social History
| Sherman Anti-Trust Law
Yosemite Park created by Act of Congress
1889-90 Jane Addams sets up Hull House, the first of many settlement houses to aid the poor
29 December. Two hundred Sioux are killed by soldiers at Wounded Knee, South Dakota.
|| Emily Dickinson, Poems
Howells, A Hazard of New Fortunes
Jacob Riis, How the Other Half Lives
James, The Tragic Muse
Sarah Orne Jewett, Tales of New England
| First international copyright law
900,000 acres of Indian land in Oklahoma opened to white settlers.
Populist Party is formed in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Thomas Edison patents a motion picture camera, the "kinetoscope," which is capable of showing movies to one person at a time.
|| Death of Melville (b. 1819) in obscurity in New York.
Mary E. Wilkins Freeman, A New England Nun and Other Stories
Rose Terry Cooke, Huckleberries Gathered from New England Hills
Howells, Criticism and Fiction
Dickinson, Poems: Second Series
Hamlin Garland,Main-Travelled Roads
Mary N. Murfree, In the "Stranger People's" Country
Sophia Alice Callahan (Creek, 1868-1894), Wynema: A Child of the Forest (first novel by a Native American woman author)
| July. Homestead (Pennsylvania) steelworkers strike; after the strikers battle with Pinkerton detectives, Governor Pattison calls in the militia. The strikers call off their strike in November.
April-July. Strike by workers in silver mines in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.
Democrat and former president Grover Cleveland is elected over opponent Benjamin Harrison, with Populist candidate James B. Weaver coming in as a strong third.
According to the Almanac of American History, on 24 March 1883 "Telephone service is put into operation between Chicago and New York" (352). The Library of Congress, however, puts the date at 1892 and includes this picture of Alexander Graham Bell at the opening of the line between the two cities.
|| Death of Whitman (b. 1819)
Frances E. W. Harper, Iola Leroy, the most popular work by an African-American woman writer of the 19th century.
Death of Rose Terry Cooke (b. 1827)
Mary Hallock Foote, The Chosen Valley
William Dean Howells, The Quality of Mercy
Grace King, Tales of a Time and Place
Joel Chandler Harris, Uncle Remus and His Friends
| Financial panic of 1893
In Hawaii, Queen Liliuokalani's government is overthrown; Hawaii becomes a U. S. protectorate despite President Cleveland's opposition.
20 October. World's Columbian Exhibition opens in Chicago and is nicknamed the "White City" for its lights and architecture. Most of its buildings are destroyed by fire in January 1894.
Ida B. Wells publishes "The Reason Why the Colored American Is Not in the World's Columbian Exposition."
| Henry James, The Real Thing and Other Tales
Stephen Crane, Maggie: A Girl of the Streets. Crane publishes this edition at his own expense under the pseudonym Johnston Smith.
Alice French (Octave Thanet), Stories of a Western Town
Henry Blake Fuller, The Cliff-Dwellers
Joseph Nicolar, The Life and Traditions of the Red Man (newly discovered Native American text)
McClure's Magazine (New York), 1893-1933, which will become famous for publishing "muckraking" articles from c.1901-12, reformist exposes such as Ida Tarbell's "The History of the Standard Oil Company," Lincoln Steffens's "The Shame of Minneapolis," and Ray Stannard Baker's "The Right to Work." S. S. McClure's My Autobiography (1914) was written by Willa Cather.
| Coxey's Army, a group of unemployed men, marches on Washington. A related group, Kelley's Army, sets out from the West Coast; one of them is Jack London.
A tailors' strike in New York City brings attention to sweat shops.
11 May -3 August. In Chicago, after the Pullman Palace Car company reduces wages, workers strike; a general sympathy strike ensues on 26 June. Despite protests by Illinois Governor John P. Altgeld, deputy marshals and U. S. troops are called out to quell the strikers, and 34 people are killed.
|| Twain, Pudd'nhead Wilson
Harriet Prescott Spofford, A Scarlet Poppy and Other Stories
Kate Chopin, Bayou Folk
Howells, A Traveler from Altruria (utopian novel)
Death of Constance Fenimore Woolson (b. 1840)
Edward Everett Hale, The Brick Moon and Other Stories
Gertrude Atherton, Before the Gringo Came
| Cuban rebellion.
Strike of trolley workers in Brooklyn, N. Y., leads to riots.
Crisis in waning gold reserves causes hoarding.
Citing the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, the Supreme Court upholds an injunction against striking railway workers, claiming that the strike impedes interstate commerce.
|| Death of Frederick Douglass
Alice Brown, Meadow-Grass: Tales of New England Life
Alice Dunbar-Nelson, Violets and Other Tales
Constance Fenimore Woolson, The Front Yard and Other Italian Stories
Stephen Crane,The Red Badge of Courage; Black Riders
Ina Coolbrith (1841-1928), Songs from the Golden Gate
Hamlin Garland, Rose of Dutcher's Coolly
James Lane Allen, A Kentucky Cardinal
Simon Pokagon, An Indian on the Problems of His Race
| 19 January. First use of X-rays to treat breast cancer.
23 April. At Koster and Bial's Music Hall in New York, the public sees its first movie.
7 July.At the Democratic National Convention, William Jennings Bryan electrifies the crowd with his "Cross of Gold" speech supporting free silver (instead of the gold standard).
12 August. The Klondike gold rush begins. By 1900, 100,000 people will have journeyed to the gold fields.
In the case of Plessy v. Ferguson, the Supreme Court upholds the "separate but equal" doctrine.
Utah becomes a state.
3 November. With a large percentage of the electoral vote, Republican McKinley wins a bitterly contested presidential election over William Jennings Bryan. The popular vote: McKinley--7,104,799; Bryan--6,502,925. The 1896 page at Vassar College provides detailed information about the election.
10 December. Queen Liliuokalani, former ruler of Hawaii, visits the United States.
The first comic strip, "The Yellow Kid," appears in Hearst's New York World. The term "yellow journalism" (sensationalistic reporting) later derives from the connection.
|| Henry James, "The Figure in the Carpet"
Crane, George's Mother; The Little Regiment and Other Episodes of the American Civil War
Sarah Orne Jewett, The Country of the Pointed Firs
Harold Frederic, The Damnation of Theron Ware
Abraham Cahan, Yekl
Dickinson, Poems: Third Series
Paul Laurence Dunbar, Lyrics of Lowly Life
James Lane Allen, Summer in Arcady
Birth of F. Scott Fitzgerald (d. 1940)
Macmillan Co. founded.
| William McKinley is inaugurated as president. After being elected to a second term in 1900, he is assassinated in 1901.
William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience
Backing away from earlier pro-business decisions, the Supreme Court votes 5-4 that railroads are subject to the Sherman Anti-Trust Act.
|| Edwin Arlington Robinson, Children of the Night
Simon Pogagon, "The Future of the Red Man"
Mary Hartwell Catherwood, The Spirit of an Illinois Town and The Little Renault
Ellen Glasgow, The Descendant
Kate Chopin, A Night in Acadie
James, What Maisie Knew; The Spoils of Poynton
Ruth McEnery Stuart, In Simpkinsville: Character Tales
Richard Harding Davis, Soldiers of Fortune
Doubleday & McClure founded.
Death of Harriet Jacobs
Birth of William Faulkner (d. 1962)
| 15 February. The explosion and sinking of the battleship Maine in Havana harbor results in 260 deaths, leading to the battle slogan "Remember the Maine!"
25 February. Assistant Secretary of the Navy Theodore Roosevelt sends the Pacific fleet to the Philippines.
12 August. Annexation of Hawaii.
Spanish-American War (April-December)
Thorstein Veblen, "The Barbarian Status of Women"
Rev. Louis Albert Banks, White Slaves, or the Oppression of the Worthy Poor (Note: This is a large .PDF file.)
|| Gertrude Atherton, The Californians
Finley Peter Dunne, Mr. Dooley in Peace and in War
Henry James, "The Turn of the Screw"
Stephen Crane, The Open Boat and Other Tales of Adventure
Brander Matthews, Outlines in Local Color
Abraham Cahan, The Imported Bridegroom and Other Stories
Frank Norris, Moran of the "Lady Letty"
Death of Edward Bellamy (b. 1850)
Death of Harold Frederic (b. 1856)
| Philippine insurrection (1899-1902); Howells and Twain oppose U. S. involvement. The Anti-Imperialist League is formed on February 17.
Inspired by Jean-François Millet's L'homme à la houe, Edwin Markham publishes "The Man with the Hoe" in the San Francisco Examiner. It becomes the most popular poem published in the United States to date and influences Frank Norris's The Octopus.
August. Scott Joplin publishes the "Maple Leaf Rag," the most famous of his works. Other rags (published in 1902) include "Peacherine,""The Entertainer," and "The Strenuous Life," the last-named a tribute to Theodore Roosevelt.
Thorstein Veblen, The Theory of the Leisure Class
|| Chesnutt, The Conjure Woman and The Wife of His Youth and Other Stories of the Color Line
Crane,The Monster and War is Kind
Kate Chopin, The Awakening
Alice Dunbar-Nelson, The Goodness of St. Rocque and Other Stories
Alice Brown, Tiverton Tales
Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wall-paper
James,The Awkward Age
Norris, McTeague; Blix
Harriet Prescott Spofford (1835-1921), The Nemesis of Motherhood