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What is the history of London, England?

People, Pictures, Old Postcards and Stories From the Past

Explore London, England. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures and genealogy.
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  • 1550 - The population of London is about 120,000
    The population of London may have reached 120,000 by the middle of the 16th century and about 250,000 by 1600. In the Middle Ages the church owned...Read MORE...

  • 1571 - The Royal Exchange is built
    Wool was still the main export from London but there were also exports of 'Excellent saffron in small quantities, a great quantity of lead and tin,...Read MORE...

  • 1600 - The population of London is about 250,000
    Nevertheless the suburbs outside London continued to grow. In the late 16th century rich men began to build houses along the Strand and by 1600...Read MORE...

  • 1603 - Plague strikes London
    All this happened despite outbreaks of bubonic plague. It broke out in 1603, 1633 and 1665 but each time the population of London quickly...Read MORE...

  • 1633 - Plague strikes again (London)

  • 1635 - Hyde Park is opened to the public (London)
    Banqueting House was built in 1622. In 1635 the king opened Hyde Park to the public. In 1637 Charles I created Richmond Park for hunting. Also in...Read MORE...

  • 1642 - Civil War (London)
    Then in 1642 Civil War began between king and parliament. The royalists made one attempt to capture London in 1643 but their army was met 6 miles...Read MORE...

  • 1665 - Great Plague struck London; over 75,000 died webimage/ countrys/ europe/ england/ uketimeln2.htm

  • News 1666 - The Great Fire of London destroys about 13,200 houses
    In 1666 came the great fire of London. It began on 2 September in a baker's house in Pudding Lane. At first it did not cause undue alarm. The Lord...Read MORE...

  • 1685 - Oil lamps are used to light the streets of London
    In the 17th century wealthy Londoners obtained piped water for the first time. It was brought by canal from the countryside then was carried by...Read MORE...

  • 1699 - Billingsgate is made a fish market (London)
    Billingsgate was a general market until 1699 when an Act of Parliament made it a fish market.

  • 1700 - The population of London is about 600,000
    The population of London rose from about 600,000 in 1700 to 950,000 in 1800. The fashionable suburbs spread north along Tottenham Court Road and...Read MORE...

  • 1703 - Buckingham Palace is built

  • 1705 - Apr 23 - Richard Steele's "Tender Husband" premieres in London

  • 1711 - St Paul's Cathedral is completed

  • News 1717 - June 24 - 1st Free Masons' grand lodge founded in London
    June 24, 1717

  • News 1718 - May 15 - James Puckle, a London lawyer, patents world's 1st machine gun
    May 15, 1718

  • News 1726 - October 28 - "Gulliver's Travels" by Jonathan Swift is published by Benjamin Motte in London
    October 28, 1726

  • London, England
    Royal Exchange, looking Southward
    The Beauties of England and Wales (1801-1815)
  • London, England
    William Henry Bartlett print
  • News 1843 - December 17 – Charles Dickens' novella A Christmas Carol is first published, in London. Released on December 19 it sells out by Christmas Eve.
    December 17, 1843

  • News 1843 - March 25 – Marc Isambard Brunel's Thames Tunnel, the first tunnel under the River Thames and the world's first bored underwater tunnel, is opened in London.
    March 25, 1843

  • News 1844 - June 6 – George Williams founds the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in London.
    June 6, 1844

  • 1845 - The rubber band is invented (Stephen Perry, England)
    "THE FIRST elastic bands, made from vulcanised rubber, were patented on March 17, 1845, by Stephen Perry of Messrs Perry & Co, rubber manufacturers...Read MORE...

  • News 1848 - February 21 – Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels publish The Communist Manifesto (Manifest der Kommunistischen Partei) in London.
    February 21, 1848

  • News 1859 - Big Ben begins keeping time
    May 31, 1859: The Great Clock (aka Big Ben) in London officially began keeping time. (On July 11, the Great Bell first struck the hour.) The...Read MORE...

  • News 1869 - More than fifteen hundred deaths occur in London every week.

    St Joseph Herald
    Saint Joseph, Michigan
    January 30, 1869

  • 1869 - A handbill, of which the following is a copy, was lately posted in sundry places in London:
    "Vive la Republique!
    "The Queen will visit the city in state on Saturday, and on that day she will be shot. She seldom gives a...Read MORE...

  • News 1872 - Enterprising Yankee
    A Yankee has a street stand in London for the sale of pop-corn and roasted peanuts.
    St Joseph Herald
    Saint Joseph, Michigan
    March 9, 1872

  • News 1881 - On entering the sea, bathers should go thoroughly into it, and not dabble about, to get chilled knee-deep in the water...
    When an individual commences bathing, it is best that he or she take one or two plunges, and then leave the water. After the next two or three days,...Read MORE...

  • March 13, 1882: Eadweard Muybridge's Zoopraxiscope, an early movie projector, debuted in London

    The Old Farmer's Almanac

  • News 1887 - November 13 – Bloody Sunday: Police in London clash with radical and Irish nationalist protesters.
    November 13, 1887

  • 1888 - Jack the Ripper active in London; Commits series of brutal murders

  • London, England
    Peek, Frean & Co., Biscuit Manufacturers
    London, England
  • News 1892 - October 31 – The first collection of Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories from The Strand Magazine, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, is published in London.
    October 31, 1892

  • London, England

  • London, England

  • News 1907 - March 22 – The first taxicabs with taxi meters begin operating in London.
    March 22, 1907

  • News 1908 - April 27–October 31 – The 1908 Summer Olympics are held in London.
    April 27, 1908

  • News 1908 - January 24 – Start of publication of Robert Baden-Powell's Scouting for Boys in London. The book will over time sell over 100 million copies and effectively begin the worldwide Boy Scout movement.
    January 24, 1908

  • London, England
    General View of the Tower, London
  • London, England
    The Bank of England (1910)
  • London, England
    Blackfriars Bridge, London
  • News 1912 - THE TITANIC SAILS TO-DAY. Largest Vessel In World to Bring Many Well-Known Persons Here.
    Special Cable to THE NEW YORK TIMES.

    LONDON, April, 9. - The White Star liner Titanic, the largest vessel in the world, will sail at noon...Read MORE...

  • News 1922 - November 14 – The British Broadcasting Company (BBC) begins radio service in the United Kingdom, broadcasting from station 2LO in London.
    November 14, 1922

  • News 1926 - January 16 – A BBC radio play about a worker's revolution causes a panic in London.
    January 16, 1926

London, England Genealogy

Ancestors Who Were Born in London, England

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