1855 in the United States
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|1855 in the United States|
|Years:||1852 1853 1854 – 1855 – 1856 1857 1858|
31 stars (1851–58)
Events from the year 1855 in the United States.
- President: Franklin Pierce (Democratic)
- Vice President: vacant
- Chief Justice: Roger B. Taney
- Speaker of the House of Representatives: Linn Boyd (D-Kentucky)
- Congress: 33rd (until March 4), 34th (starting March 4)
- Governor of Alabama: John A. Winston (Democratic)
- Governor of Arkansas: Elias Nelson Conway (Democratic)
- Governor of California: John Bigler (Democratic)
- Governor of Connecticut: Henry Dutton (Whig) (until May 2), William T. Minor (Know Nothing) (starting May 2)
- Governor of Delaware: William H. H. Ross (Democratic) (until January 16), Peter F. Causey (Know Nothing) (starting January 16)
- Governor of Florida: James E. Broome (Democratic)
- Governor of Georgia: Herschel V. Johnson (Democratic)
- Governor of Illinois:Joel Aldrich Matteson (Democratic)
- Governor of Indiana: Joseph A. Wright (Democratic)
- Governor of Iowa: James W. Grimes (Whig)
- Governor of Kentucky: Lazarus W. Powell (Democratic) (until September 4), Charles S. Morehead (Know Nothing) (starting September 4)
- Governor of Louisiana: Paul Octave Hébert (Democratic)
- Governor of Maine: William G. Crosby (Whig) (until January 3), Anson Morrill (Republican) (starting January 3)
- Governor of Maryland: Thomas W. Ligon (Democratic)
- Governor of Massachusetts: Emory Washburn (Whig) (until January 4), Henry Gardner (Know Nothing) (starting January 4)
- Governor of Michigan: Andrew Parsons (Democratic) (until January 3), Kinsley S. Bingham (Republican) (starting January 3)
- Governor of Mississippi: John J. McRae (Democratic Party)
- Governor of Missouri: Sterling Price (Democratic)
- Governor of New Hampshire: Nathaniel B. Baker (Democratic) (until June 7), Ralph Metcalf (Know Nothing) (starting June 7)
- Governor of New Jersey: Rodman M. Price (Democratic)
- Governor of New York: vacant (until January 1), Myron H. Clark (Whig) (starting January 1)
- Governor of North Carolina: Warren Winslow (Democratic) (until January 1), Thomas Bragg (Democratic) (starting January 1)
- Governor of Ohio: William Medill (Democratic)
- Governor of Pennsylvania: William Bigler (Democratic) (until January 16), James Pollock (Whig) (starting January 16)
- Governor of Rhode Island: William W. Hoppin (Whig)
- Governor of South Carolina: James Hopkins Adams (Democratic)
- Governor of Tennessee: Andrew Johnson (Democratic)
- Governor of Texas: Elisha M. Pease (Unionist)
- Governor of Vermont: Stephen Royce (Whig)/(Republican)
- Governor of Virginia: Joseph Johnson (Democratic)
- Governor of Wisconsin: William A. Barstow (Democratic)
- January – Klamath and Salmon River War: In Klamath County, California, hostility between settlers and the local Native Americans becomes violent. The California State Militia and U.S. Army intervene, ending the war in March.
- January 23 – The first bridge over the Mississippi River opens in what is now Minneapolis, Minnesota (a crossing made today by the Hennepin Avenue Bridge).
- January 26 – The Point No Point Treaty is signed in the Washington Territory.
- February 12 – Michigan State University (the "pioneer" land-grant college) is established.
- February 22 – Pennsylvania State University is founded as the Farmers' High School of Pennsylvania.
- March 3 – The U.S. Congress appropriates $30,000 to create the U.S. Camel Corps.
- March 16 – Bates College is founded by abolitionists in Lewiston, Maine.
- March 30 – Elections are held for the first Kansas Territory legislature. Missourians cross the border in large numbers to elect a pro-slavery body.
- April – Cincinnati riots of 1855: Tension between nativists and German-American immigrants in Cincinnati breaks out into territorial street fighting on election day.
- May 17 – The Mount Sinai Hospital is dedicated (as the Jews' Hospital) in New York City; it opens to patients on June 5.
- June 6 – Portland Rum Riot: A crowd gathers at a storehouse believed to hold alcohol in Portland, Maine. The militia is called in and fires on the crowd to disperse the crowd, killing one person.
- June 28 – The Sigma Chi Fraternity is founded at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
- July 1 – Quinault Treaty signed, Quinault and Quileute cede their land to the United States.
- July 2 – The Kansas territorial legislature convenes in Pawnee and begins passing proslavery laws.
- July 16 – U.S. Indian commissioner Isaac Stevens signs the Hellgate treaty with Native Americans living in what is present-day western Montana.
- August 6 – Bloody Monday: Protestant mobs attack Irish Catholics on an election day in Louisville, Kentucky, causing 22 deaths.
- September 3 – First Sioux War – Battle of Ash Hollow: U.S. forces defeat a band of Brulé Lakota in present-day Garden County, Nebraska.
- October 5 – Yakima War – Battle of Toppenish Creek: In the Yakima River Valley, a band of Yakama warriors forces a company of U.S. soldiers to retreat. It is the first battle of the Yakima War.
- October 28–31 – First Fiji Expedition: The U.S. Navy dispatches the USS John Adams to Viti Levu, Fiji, to protect American interests. One American sailor is killed and two Marines are wounded.
- November 1 – 31 people are killed in the Gasconade Bridge train disaster in Missouri.
- November 9–10 – Yakima War – Battle of Union Gap: American soldiers attack a Yakama village, forcing the village to retreat.
- November 21 – Large-scale Bleeding Kansas violence begins with events leading to the Wakarusa War between antislavery and proslavery forces.
- California Gold Rush (1848–1855)
- Bleeding Kansas (1854–1860)
- Third Seminole War (1855–1858)
- Yakima War (1855–1858)
- February 23 – Jonathan Bourne, Jr., United States Senator from Oregon from 1907 till 1913. Died in 1940.
- July 29 – Bowman Brown Law, politician (died 1916)
- September 2 – M. Hoke Smith, United States Senator from Georgia from 1911 till 1920. Died in 1931.
- November 5, Eugene V. Debs, United States is born
- March 25 – Thomas Fitzgerald, United States Senator from Michigan from 1848 till 1849. (born 1796)
- March 28 – William S. Archer, United States Senator from Virginia from 1841 till 1847. (born 1789)
- May 7 – Walter T. Colquitt, United States Senator from Georgia from 1843 till 1848. (born 1799)
- August 18 – Thomas Metcalfe, United States Senator from Kentucky from 1848 till 1849. (born 1780)
- Media related to 1855 in the United States at Wikimedia Commons