This article is about the year 1873. For the number, see 1873 (number)
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1873 (MDCCCLXXIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (dominical letter E) of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Monday (dominical letter G) of the Julian calendar, the 1873rd year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 873rd year of the 2nd millennium, the 73rd year of the 19th century, and the 4th year of the 1870s decade. Note that the Julian day for 1873 is 12 calendar days difference, which continued to be used from 1582 until the complete conversion of the Gregorian calendar was entirely done in 1929.
- July - The end of the war between the United Kingdom and Ghana's King Kofi KariKari, who is involved in the trading of slaves leads to the establishment of the Gold Coast Colony.
- July 1 – Prince Edward Island joins the Canadian Confederation.
- July 9 – Battle of Alpens (Third Carlist War): Campaigning in Catalonia, a government column under General José Cabrinety is ambushed at Alpens, 15 miles east of Berga, by Carlist forces under General Francisco Savalls. After heavy fighting, with Cabrinety killed, virtually the entire column of 800 men is killed or captured.
- July 21 – At Adair, Iowa, Jesse James and the James–Younger Gang pull off the first successful train robbery in the American Old West (US$3,000 from the Rock Island Express).
- August 4 – American Indian Wars: While protecting a railroad survey party in Montana, the Seventh Cavalry, under Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer, clashes for the first time with the Sioux, near the Tongue River (only 1 man on each side is killed).
- August 12 – A peace treaty is signed between Imperial Russia and the Khanate of Khiva, making the khanate a Russian protectorate.
- August 30 – The Austro-Hungarian North Pole Expedition discovers Franz Josef Land.
- September 15 – Agreement for establishment of the International Meteorological Organization (IMO).
- September 16 – German troops leave France upon completion of payment of indemnity for the Franco-Prussian War.
- September 17 – The Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College, later Ohio State University, opens its doors with 25 students, including 2 women.
- September 18 – The New York stock market crash triggers the Panic of 1873, part of the Long Depression.
- September 25 – Classes begin at Drury University in Springfield, Missouri, USA.
- October – Beginning of the Long Depression
- October 6
- The County Carlow Football Club (Rugby union) is founded in Ireland.
- Battle of Mañeru (Third Carlist War): In continued campaigning in Navarre, Spanish Republican General Domingo Moriones meets a Carlist force under Nicolás Ollo at Mañeru, near Puente de la Reina, in a hard-fought but indecisive action. While both sides claim victory, the Carlists are said to have had the advantage, and a month later Moriones is repulsed in a costly assault further west against Estella
- November 6 – The Halifax rugby league club is founded.
- November 7
- November 17 – Budapest, Hungary's capital, is formed from Pest, Buda and Óbuda.
- November 18–21 – Irish Home Rule movement: The Home Government Association reconstitutes itself as the Home Rule League.
- December – Major Walter Clopton Wingfield designs and patents a racquet sport which he calls sphairistike (Greek σφάίρίστική, "skill at playing at ball"), soon known simply as Stické, for the amusement of his guests at a garden party on his estate of Nantclwyd, in Llanelidan, Wales.
- December 15 – Women of Fredonia, New York, march against the retail liquor dealers in town to inaugurate the Woman's Crusade of 1873–74. This leads to the creation of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (December 23) in Hillsboro, Ohio.
- December 16 – The Heineken Brewery is founded in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
- December 21 – Francis Garnier is attacked outside Hanoi by Black Flag mercenaries fighting for the Vietnamese.
- December 22 – Battle of Bocairente (Third Carlist War): Campaigning in Valenica, Spanish Republican General Valeriano Weyler is attacked at Bocairente, northwest of Alcoy, by a greatly superior Carlist force under General José Santés. Weyler was initially driven back, losing some of his guns, but in a brilliant counter-attack he turns defeat into victory and Santés is heavily repulsed and forced to withdraw.
- December 23 – The Woman's Christian Temperance Union is founded, in Hillsboro, Ohio, USA.
- December 27 – Siege of Bilbao (Third Carlist War; until 2 May 1874): Campaigning in Navarre, Pretender Don Carlos VII and General Joaquín Elío besiege Bilbao, held by General Ignacio del Castillo and 1,200 men. The Carlist force is ten times this number and includes most of the troops from Navarre, Vizcaya and Álava, although a considerable force is left in Guipúzcoa. Despite defeat at nearby Somorrostro, Republic commander Marshal Francisco Serrano, supported by Generals Manuel de la Concha and Arsenio Martínez-Campos, brilliantly breaks the siege and Concha then marches on Estella.
- January 2 – Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, Catholic saint and mystic (d. 1897)
- January 4 – Blanche Walsh, stage & screen actress (d. 1915)
- January 7 – Adolph Zukor, Austrian-born film studio pioneer (d. 1976)
- January 8
- January 10 – George Orton, Canadian athlete (d. 1958)
- January 12 – Spyridon Louis, Greek runner (d. 1940)
- January 20 – Johannes V. Jensen, Danish writer, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1950)
- January 28 – Colette, French writer (d. 1954)
- January 29 – Prince Luigi Amedeo, Duke of the Abruzzi, Italian mountaineer, explorer, and admiral (d. 1933)
- January 30 – Vassily Balabanov, an administrator and Provincial Governor of Imperial Russia (d. 1947)
- January 31 – Melitta Bentz, German entrepreneur, who invented the coffee filter in 1908 (d. 1950)
- February 2 – Maurice Tourneur, French film director (d. 1961)
- February 3
- February 4
- February 7 – Thomas Andrews, Irish shipbuilder (d. 1912)
- February 13 – Feodor Chaliapin, Russian bass opera singer (d. 1938)
- February 15 – Hans von Euler-Chelpin, German-born chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1964)
- February 19 – Louis Feuillade, French film director (d. 1925)
- July 1 – Alice Guy-Blaché, French-American filmmaker (d. 1968)
- July 20 – Alberto Santos-Dumont, Brazilian aviation pioneer (suicide 1932)
- August 5 – Joseph Russell Knowland, American politician and newspaperman (d. 1966)
- August 13 – Cornelis Jacobus Langenhoven, South African author (d. 1932)
- August 17 – John A. Sampson, American gynecologist (d. 1946)
- August 25 – Blanche Bates, actress (d. 1941)
- August 26 – Lee de Forest, American inventor (d. 1961)
- September 1 – Sir Guy Standing, British actor (d. 1937)
- September 5 – Cornelius Vanderbilt III, American military officer, inventor, engineer (d. 1942)
- September 8 – David O. McKay, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (d. 1970)
- September 20
- September 21 – Papa Jack Laine, jazz musician (d. 1966)
- September 25 – Fawcet Wray, British admiral (d. 1932)
- September 26 – Wacław Berent, Polish novelist and translator (d. 1940)
- October 2 – Stephen Warfield Gambrill, U.S. Congressman for Maryland's 5th District (d. 1924)
- October 3 – Emily Post, American etiquette expert (d. 1960)
- October 9 – Charles Rudolph Walgreen, American businessman (d. 1939)
- October 9 – Karl Schwarzschild, German physicist and astronomer (d. 1916)
- October 14 – Ray Ewry, American athlete (d. 1937)
- October 18 – Harris Laning, American admiral (d. 1941)
- October 19
- October 26
- November 9 – Fritz Thyssen, German industrialist (d. 1951)
- November 16 – W. C. Handy, American blues composer (d. 1958)
- November 22 – Johnny Tyldesley, English cricketer (d. 1930)
- December 7 – Willa Cather, American novelist (d. 1947)
- December 11 – Josip Plemelj, Slovenian mathematician (d. 1967)
- December 17 – Ford Madox Ford, English writer (d. 1939)
- December 20 – Kan'ichi Asakawa, Japanese historian(d. 1948)
- December 26 – Thomas Wass, Nottinghamshire bowler (d. 1953)
- December 30
- Al Smith, American politician (d. 1944)
- Phillip Linnington born to the Linnington Family. (d. 1873)
- January 9 – Napoleon III, last Emperor of the French (b. 1808)
- January 18 – Edward Bulwer-Lytton, English novelist (b. 1803)
- January 23 – Ramalinga Swamigal, Hindu religious leader (b. 1823)
- January 29 – The Venerable Father Basil Anthony Marie Moreau, French founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross (b. 1799)
- February 3 – Isaac Baker Brown, English gynaecologist and surgeon (b. 1811)
- February 7 – Sheridan Le Fanu, Irish writer (b. 1814)
- February 19 – Vasil Levski, Bulgarian revolutionary, executed (b. 1837)
- March 10 – John Torrey, American botanist (b. 1796)
- March 24 – Mary Ann Cotton, English serial killer, executed (b. 1832)
- March 25 – Wilhelm Marstrand, Danish painter (b. 1810)
- March 31 – Hugh Maxwell, American lawyer and politician (d. 1873)
- April 11 – Edward Canby, American general (b. 1817)
- April 18 – Justus von Liebig, German chemist (b. 1803)
- April 27 – William Charles Macready, English actor (b. 1793)
- May 4 – David Livingstone, Scottish explorer of Africa (b. 1813)
- May 6 – José Antonio Páez, first President of Venezuela (b. 1790)
- May 7 – Salmon P. Chase, Chief Justice of the United States (b. 1808)
- May 8 – John Stuart Mill, British philosopher (b. 1806)
- May 15 – Alexandru Ioan Cuza, first ruler of Romania (b. 1820)
- May 20 – George-Étienne Cartier, Canadian statesman (b. 1814)
- May 29 – Édouard de Verneuil, French palaeontologist (b. 1805)
- June 1 – Joseph Howe, Canadian politician (b. 1804)
- August 18 – Charles II, Duke of Brunswick (b. 1804)
- September 11 – Agustín Fernando Muñoz, 1st Duke of Riánsares, morganatic husband of Maria Christina of the Two Sicilies (b. 1808)
- September 17 – Alexander Berry, Scottish adventurer and Australian pioneer (b. 1781)
- September 22 – Friedrich Frey-Herosé, Swiss Federal Councilor (b. 1801)
- September 23 – Jean Chacornac, French astronomer (b. 1823)
- October 5 – William Todd, American businessman, Canadian senate nominee (b. 1803)
- October 9 – George Ormerod, English historian and antiquarian (b. 1785)
- November 6 – Manuel Bretón de los Herreros, Spanish playwright (b. 1796)
- December 14
- Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia...for 1873 (1879) online edition, detailed worldwide coverage