This Day In History
Monday, January 17, 2022
On This Day



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February 26, 1794

The first Christiansborg Palace...
The first Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen burns down. The first Christiansborg Palace was built in Copenhagen by Christian VI of Denmark as a new main residence for the Danish monarch to replace the antiquated Copenhagen Castle which had assumed a monstrous appearance and started to crumble after several extensions. It was constructed on Slotsholmen, on the site where its predecessor had stood, and completed around 1745. The palace only existed for just under half a century since it was almost completely destroyed by a fire in 1794. The surviving parts, which included the show grounds, the court theatre and the Marble Bridge with its two pavilions, were incorporated into the second Christiansborg Palace which succeeded it. These parts also survived the fire of 1884 which destroyed the second palace and are now part of the present day Christiansborg Palace which houses both the Danish Parliament, Supreme Court and Prime Minister's Office.
Christiansborg Palace, Copenhagen

March 14, 1794

Eli Whitney is granted...
Eli Whitney is granted a patent for the cotton gin. A cotton gin (short for cotton engine) is a machine that quickly and easily separates cotton fibers from their seeds, a job that otherwise must be performed painstakingly by hand. The fibers are processed into cotton goods, and the seeds may be used to grow more cotton or to produce cottonseed oil; if they are badly damaged, they are disposed of.
cotton gin, patent, Eli Whitney, cotton

March 27, 1794

The United States Government...
The United States Government establishes a permanent navy and authorizes the building of six frigates. The United States Congress authorized the original six frigates of the United States Navy with the Naval Act of 1794 on 27 March 1794 at a total cost of $688,888.82. These ships were built during the formative years of the United States Navy, on the recommendation of designer Joshua Humphreys for a fleet of frigates powerful enough to engage any frigates of the French or British navies yet fast enough to evade any ship of the line.
United States Navy, navy


March 5, 1794
Jacques Babinet

Jacques Babinet was a French physicist, mathematician, and astronomer who is best known for his contributions to optics.


January 16, 1794
Edward Gibbon

Edward Gibbon was an English historian and Member of Parliament. His most important work, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, was published in six volumes between 1776 and 1788. The Decline and Fall is known for the quality and irony of its prose, its use of primary sources, and its open criticism of organized religion.
April 5, 1794
Camille Desmoulins

Lucie Simplice Camille Benoît Desmoulins was a journalist and politician who played an important role in the French Revolution. Desmoulins was regarded by many as a strict and harsh man who would often let his pen get away from him.
July 25, 1794
Andre Chenier

André Marie Chénier was a French poet, associated with the events of the French Revolution of which he was a victim. His sensual, emotive poetry marks him as one of the precursors of the Romantic movement. His career was brought to an abrupt end when he was guillotined for alleged "crimes against the state", just three days before the end of the Reign of Terror. Chénier's life has been the subject of Umberto Giordano's opera Andrea Chénier and other works of art.
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