COVE Timeline for July 2021 Workshop

Part of Group:

Today we will create an entry for our shared timeline that focuses on an event--real or imagined--that took place in the nineteenth century. Follow along, read the instructions carefully, ask questions, and have fun!


Chronological table

Displaying 1 - 5 of 5
Date Event Created by Associated Places
10 Jan 1840

launch of UK Penny Post

The introduction of the Penny Post in 1840, the rapid expansion of the rail network in the UK, and the introduction of steamships on the transatlantic routes, created the optimum conditions for writing letters. Prior to 1840, the cost of inland postage was prohibitively expensive; it was calculated according to the number of sheets multiplied by the distance traveled. Additional charges were often levied and the burden of payment fell on the recipient, which did nothing to encourage frequent communication. The Penny Post Act drastically reduced the cost of an inland letter to a universal flat rate of just one penny for a half an ounce, and the introduction of the prepaid penny stamp removed the deterrent to accepting a letter.


Susan Donovan, “How the Post Office and Postal Products Shaped Mid-Nineteenth-Century Letter-Writing”

David Rettenmaier

1857 Matrimonial Causes Act

Legislation creating secular divorce courts and allowing divorce in some cases.

Melissa Ganz
24 Nov 1859

On the Origin of Species

Photograph of Charles DarwinOn 24 November 1859, Charles Darwin publishes his On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. Image: Henry Maull and John Fox, Photograph of Charles Darwin (c. 1854). This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.


Nancy Armstrong, “On Charles Darwin’s The Descent of Man, 24 February 1871″

Ian Duncan, “On Charles Darwin and the Voyage of the Beagle”

Anna Henchman, “Charles Darwin’s Final Book on Earthworms, 1881”

Martin Meisel, "On the Age of the Universe"

Cannon Schmitt, “On the Publication of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, 1859″

Related Articles

Daniel Bivona, “On W. K. Clifford and ‘The Ethics of Belief,’ 11 April 1876″

David Rettenmaier
16 Oct 1869

Opening of Girton College at Cambridge

A photo of Girton College at the University of Cambridge

In 1869 the college of Girton at the University of Cambridge was founded by Emily Davies. Girton was the first women's college at Cambridge. Originally, Girton College was located at Hitchin, then shortly after opening moved to Girton where the campus remains today. Just two years later, in 1871, Henry Sidgwick opened a second college and residence for women in Cambridge which relocated to Newnham Hall and became known as Newnham College in 1875. In more recent times, the University of Cambridge opened two more women's colleges. New Hall opened in 1954 and Lucy Cavendish College opened in 1986.

Although Girton paved the way for women at Cambridge, Girton began admitting men into the school in 1977, while Newnham, New Hall and Lucy Cavendish all remain strictly women's colleges. In an article titled "English and American Colleges for Women," published in 1877, the writer talks about how even though Girton was a school at the University of Cambridge the students from Girton did not receive a University degree. In another article titled "Women at the University of Cambridge," it states that women did not receive degrees or full status until 1947. Women's acceptance into college was a step forward in the suffrage movement, giving women the right to attend classes, become more independent and have more job opportunities. When women finally received full status and degree, it became and an even bigger step forward, giving women and men a more equal education.

I received all of my information from articles "Women at the University of Cambridge," and "English and American Colleges for Women." All of the mapsites are women's colleges that I learned about in these articles along with Cambridge itself. 


Elaine D. Trehub. "Women at the University of Cambridge." The Victorian Web, November 27, 2016,

"English and American Colleges for Women." New York Times (1857- 1922), Feburary 18, 1877 pp. 6. ProQuest,


Devin Poplin

Timeline example

Laura holding a mug with a cat on it.
Laura holding a mug with a cat on it.


link to instructions


Laura Rotunno