& the Isle of Ely


Note: All entries in this colour cover other areas as well as Cambridgeshire and the Isle of Ely and can be regarded as general historic information.






First National Census held, it was not until 1841 that personal details were available nationally.
Surrey Iron Railway, first public railway in the world to carry general freight, opened
General Enclosure Act
Electric arc lamp invented by Sir Humphrey Davy



First Stock Exchange opened on present site at Capel Court, London.
First publication of Debrett's Peerage by John Debrett.


Apr 1802

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia disembodied at Ely.



Sunday School Union set up as an interdenominational society.


25 Mar 1803

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia called out once again as the 24th mustering at Ely due to renewed threat of invasion. Their duties took various companies all over East Anglia.



Slavery abolished in the British Empire.



Thomas Dampier made Bishop of Ely
First publication of Debrett's Baronetcies


21 Aug 1808

Sir Arthur Wellesley leads campaign in Peninsular War.



Establishment of the Two Thousand Guinea Stakes (Horse Race) at Newmarket.


May 1810

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia (24th) in Hampstead and Highgate, by the summer it was Hull, the following year Durham and then Sunderland and then Peebles. From there the Regiment went to Ireland.



Primitive Methodists founded.


Feb 1811

Prince of Wales becomes Prince Regent due to King's insanity.



Bowyer Edward Sparke made Bishop of Ely



Establishment of the One Thousand Guinea Stakes (Horse Race) at Newmarket.



Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia return from Ireland.


18 Jun 1815

Napoleon defeated at Waterloo.


26 Jan 1816

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia was disembodied at Ely.


22 May 1816

After the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815 England was left in a very poor condition. The rates and taxes raised to pay for the wars had rendered farmers and other employers too poor themselves to pay very much for labour. There were hundreds of people who were not just poor but very poor to the point of starvation. All over the country at this time there was general dissatisfaction.

This general dissatisfaction hotted up and eventually boiled over in Littleport on 22nd May 1816 in the Globe Inn (since removed) where the would-be rioters were angry and inflamed with drink. This situation inevitably led to a riot. They broke into houses and shops in the Main Street, marched on the vicarage and generally caused mayhem. They then decided to March on to Ely where they caused more disruption before returning to Littleport. News reached them that the Militia had been called from Bury St Edmunds and so they decided to barricade themselves in the George and Dragon public house.

In the ensuing fight two men were shot, many were arrested and committed for trial. Five were hanged, several were transported to Australia and some were imprisoned. Nearly every family on the village was affected in one way or another by the uprising.



Income Tax abolished.
Invention of phosphorous match by F Derosne.
Invention of bicycle by K D von Sauerbronn.

Foundation of FitzWilliam Museum, Cambridge



MacAdam revolutionises road building.


24 May 1819

Queen Victoria born.


29 Jan 1820

George III's reign of Great Britain ends..


30 Jan 1820

George IV becomes King of Great Britain.



Royal Academy of Music founded
Invention of electric motor by Michael Faraday.



Repeal of Combination Acts against trade unions.


27 Sep 1825

First passenger train service from Stockton to Darlington.



First Publication of Burke's Peerage.



Nonconformists allowed into Public Office.


22 Jan 1828

Wellington becomes Prime Minister.



Metropolitan Police formed.
First UK horse drawn omnibus service introduced by George Shillibeer in London.
Catholic Emancipation
George Stephenson builds first steam locomotive.


26 Sep 1829

First proper police force established in London.



Formation of the Conservative Party from the Tory Party.


26 Jun 1830

George IV's reign of Great Britain ends.


27 Jun 1830

William IV King of Great Britain.



Congregational Union of England and Wales formed (Congregational Church).
Invention of the friction match by C Sauria.



Great Reform Act - The Representation of the People Act.
Formation of the Liberal Party from the Whigs
Michael Faraday invents electric dynamo.


Jun 1832

Cholera spread rapidly killing twenty-two thousand people before the beginning of June 1832 and by the end of that year cholera had spread to most parts of England. The most frightening aspect was the speed at which its victims perished. An attack of violent diahorrea and vomiting followed by agonising cramps in the limbs an abdomen, thirst and fever. After three to twelve hours, the symptoms advanced with rapidity, the skin became dry and a dusky blue or purple in colour, the eyes sank in their sockets, the features were pinched, the pulse at the wrist imperceptible, the voice reduced to a hoarse whisper. Death often took place within a day sometimes a few hours.


7 Jun 1832

Parliament passes Reform Act.



Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia became the 68th.


29 Jul 1833

Slavery abolished throughout British Empire.



Wesleyan Methodist Association founded.



Joseph Allen made Bishop of Ely
Marriage in deissenting chapels legalised.
Founding of the Paymaster General's Office
General Register Office established.
Establishment of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners
Invention of screw propeller by F P Smith



Civil Registration of births, marriages and deaths began in England and Wales.
Invention of telegraph by S F B Morse.


20 Jun 1837

William IV's reign of Great Britain ends.


21 Jun 1837

Victoria becomes Queen of Great Britain.



Hill, Octavia - Housing reformer. With help from friends, notably John Ruskin, in 1865 she began to acquire dilapidated houses in London for rehabilitation and letting to the poor. Her work expanded until utlimately she was managing some 6,000 dwellings. She was also co-founder of the National Trust.



Public Record Office (PRO) established by statute.
The People's Charter published (origins of the Chartist Movement).


Apr 1838

First steam crossing of the Atlantic.



Reform of the postal service by Rowland Hill. First Postage Stamps issued.
First screw propellor driven Royal Navy ship.
Development of photography.


6 May 1840

Penny Post introduced


2 Jun 1840

Britain annexes New Zealand.


6 Jul 1841

First National Census carried out. The details contained within this census were not as definitive as future census were to be. The census was to be held every ten years from this one. Details now available under the 100 year rule.


Sep 1841

Robert Peel becomes Prime Minister.


9 Nov 1841

King Edward VII born.



Income Tax reintroduced
The Illustrated London News founded.
Royal Commission on Children's Employment.
Establishment of a detective department of the Metropolitan Police (origin of CID).
First use of ether as anesthetic by CW Long.


25-26 October 1843

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert visit Cambridge University so that the Prince might receive a doctorate from the University.



Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) founded.


1 Dec 1844

Queen Alexandra born.



Thomas Turton made Bishop of Ely


5-7 July 1847

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert visit Cambridge University so that the Prince might be installed as Chancellor of the University.



Board of Health formed.



Cholera outbreak in which at least 50,000 died in England and Wales and probably actually numbering 70,000.



Wesleyan Reform Union founded.


31 Mar 1851

Second National Census carried out. The details contained within this census were to establish the norm for future census. Details now available under the 100 year rule. The records for some parishes within Cambridgeshire and the Isle of Ely were lost at source and will never be available. The 1851 Census for other areas, in transcript form, is available from the Cambridgeshire Family History Society Bookstall.



Appointment of first Charity Commissioners.
Smallpox vaccination becomes compulsory.
Transportation of criminals to Australia ends.

The County bought some buildings and a plot of land for Militia Stores and a Parade Ground of 3 acres in Ely for the Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia.



Cholera outbreak in England and Wales - there were 10,675 deaths.



Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia embodied again as 68th and were moved to Ireland again. Before leaving they received their new Colours from the Countess of Hardwicke at Ely Cathedral.


26 Mar 1854

Britain and France declare war on Russia (Crimean War).



Diptheria outbreak in Europe.



Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) founded.
Appointment of the first Civil Service Commissioners
Invention of the safety match by J E Lundstrom.
First use of Field Telegraph in War in the Crimea.


12 Jan 1856

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia returned home from Ireland to be disembodied.


29 Jan 1856

Victoria Cross instituted by Queen Victoria.


30 Mar 1856

End of Crimean War.



United Methodist Free Churches founded.
Establishment by Parliament of the Court of Probate.



First Publication of Crockford's Clerical Directory by Edward William Cox.



Volunteer semi-military body raised called the Cambridge Rifle Club which was to become the Cambridgeshire Volunteer Corps in 1860.



The Cambridgeshire Rifle Volunteer Corps formed incorporating: 1st Cambridgeshire; 2nd, Wisbech; 3rd, Cambridge Univeristy; 4th, Whittlesey 5th, March; 6th, Ely; 7th. Upwell (disbanded 1872); 8th, Cambridge; 9th, Newmarket; 10th, Soham (disbanded 1865).


8 Apr 1861

Third National Census carried out. Details now available under the 100 year rule. Some areas of Cambridgeshire for 1861 are transcribed and are available from the Cambridgeshire Family History Society Bookstall.



First combined parade of the Cambridgeshire Rifle Volunteer Corps at Wisbech on the occasion of the visit of the Prince and Princess of Wales.



Edward Harold Browne made Bishop of Ely



Salvation Army founded by William & Catherine Booth in Whitechapel, London.


3 Jun 1865

King George V born.


18 Oct 1865

Viscount Palmerston died.


Sep 1866

Cholera outbreak in England and Wales - more than 3,000 died within three weeks.


Feb 1868

Disraeli becomes Prime Minister.



Elementary Education Act set up state elementary schools.


3 Apr 1871

Fourth National Census carried out. Details now available under the 100 year rule.



Trade Union Act legaised trade unions.
First Rugby International match between England and Scotland.
Formation of the Rugby Football Union.
Bank Holidays Act establishes Bank Holidays.



The Cambridgeshire Rifle Volunteer Corps becomes the 1st Administrative Battalion Cambridgeshire Rifle Volunteers.


May 1872

Gladstone becomes Prime Ministers.



James Russell Woodford made Bishop of Ely
Supreme Court of Judicature established.



Invention of the telephone by Alexander Graham Bell.



Phonograph invented by Thomas Edison.
Invention of reinforced concrete by J Monier.



Salvation Army adopts uniforms and military style hierarchy.
Establishment of Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

Cambridgeshire Militia Reserves were embodied for 3 months as a result of the wars in Afghanistan and South Africa.



Creation of the office of Director of Public Prosecutions.



The the 1st Administrative Battalion Cambridgeshire Rifle Volunteers becomes the 1st Cambridgeshire Battalion Rifle Volunteer Corps.


3 Apr 1881

Fifth National Census carried out. Details now available under the 100 year rule. The whole of this census has been transcribed by the LDS and is available on CD from them.


24 May 1881

Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia received new Colours from Lady Elizabeth Biddulph (daughter of the Earl of Hardwicke) at Ely Cathedral.



The Cardwell Reforms saw a major re-organisation of the Infantry of the Line and the Militia Regiments of the Infantry were organised into Territorial Regiments, each of 4 battalions, the 1st and 2nd were to be Regular Army battalions and the 3rd and 4th Militia, all bearing a name corresponding to the localities with which the regiment was connected. The Regiment of the Cambridgeshire Militia became 4th Battalion The Suffolk Regiment (Cambridgeshire Militia).



Foundation of the Church Army by Rev.Prebendary Wilson Carlisle
Isolation of tuberculosis bacteria by R Koch.


19 Apr 1882

Benjamin Disraeli (Lord Beaconsfield) died.



Foundation of the Boys Brigade by Sir Wlliam Alexander Smith in Glasgow
Cholera bacteria isolated by Robert Koch.



First British Amateur Golf Championship.
Vaccine against rabies discovered by Louis Pasteur
First internal combustion carriage built by K. Benz.



Alwyne Frederick Compton made Bishop of Ely



The 1st Cambridgeshire Battalion Rifle Volunteer Corps becomes the 3rd (Cambridgeshire) Volunteer Battalion The Suffolk Regiment.



Lawn Tennis Association formed.
Invention of the pneumatic tyre by John Dunlop.
Invention of hand-held camera by George Eastman.



Discovery of diphtheria vaccine by E von Behring.


1 Apr 1891

Sixth National census carried out. Details now available under the 100 year rule.



Smallholdings Act to enable Local Authorities to buy farmland to let as smallholdings.


23 Jun 1894

King Edward VIII (Duke of Windsor) born.



National Trust founded
Discovery of x-rays by W K Roentgen
Wireless telegraphy invented by G Marconi.


14 Dec 1895

King George VI born.



Who's Who first published.


22 Jun 1897

Victoria celebrates her Diamond Jubilee.



Invention of first tape recorder by V Poulsen.
Introduction of aspirin by Felix Hoffman
Start of the Boer War.


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