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|Centuries:||18th century – 19th century – 20th century|
|Decades:||1820s 1830s 1840s – 1850s – 1860s 1870s 1880s|
|Years:||1852 1853 1854 – 1855 – 1856 1857 1858|
Year 1855 (MDCCCLV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar).
Events of 1855
January - June
- January 1 - Ottawa, Ontario is incorporated as a city.
- January 23 - The first bridge over the Mississippi River opens in what is now Minneapolis, Minnesota, a crossing made today by the Father Louis Hennepin Bridge.
- January 23 - The region of Wairarapa, New Zealand was hit by the strongest earthquake ever recorded in New Zealand, which reached Magnitude 8.1 on the Richter Scale. There were five deaths.
- January 26 - Point No Point Treaty signed in Washington Territory.
- January 27 - The Panama Railway becomes the first railroad to connect the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean.
- January 29 - Lord Aberdeen resigns as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom over the management of the Crimean War.
- February 5 - Lord Palmerston becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
- February 11 - Kassa Hailu is crowned Tewodros II, Emperor of Ethiopia.
- February 12 - Michigan State University (the "pioneer" land-grant college) was established.
- February 22 - Pennsylvania State University is founded as the Farmers' High School of Pennsylvania.
- March 3 - US Congress appropriates $30,000 to create US Camel Corps
- March 16 - Bates College was founded by abolitionists in Lewiston, Maine.
- March 17 - Taiping Rebellion: A Taiping army of 350,000 invades Anhui.
- March 30 - Elections held for first Kansas Territory legislature. Missourians cross border in large numbers to elect proslavery body.
- May 15 - The Great Gold Robbery of 1855 in England.
- June 28 - The Sigma Chi Fraternity was founded at Miami University in Oxford Ohio.
- June 29 - The Daily Telegraph begins publication.
July - December
- July 2 - Kansas Territorial legislature convenes in Pawnee and begins passing proslavery laws.
- September 3 - Last Bartholomew Fair in London, England.
- September 11 - Sevastapol falls to the British troops.
- November 17 - David Livingstone becomes the first European to see Victoria Falls in what is now present-day Zambia-Zimbabwe.
- November 21 - Large-scale Bleeding Kansas violence begins with events leading to " Wakarusa War" between antislavery and proslavery forces.
- December 22 - Metropolitan Board of Works established.
- Leaves of Grass was published by Walt Whitman.
|Ab urbe condita||2608|
|British Regnal year||18 Vict. 1 – 19 Vict. 1|
|Chinese calendar|| 甲寅年十一月十三日
— to —乙卯年十一月廿三日
|- Vikram Samvat||1911–1912|
|- Shaka Samvat||1777–1778|
|- Kali Yuga||4956–4957|
|- Ǹrí Ìgbò||855–856|
|Japanese calendar|| Ansei 2
|Juche calendar||N/A (before 1912)|
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 12 days|
|Minguo calendar||57 before ROC
|Thai solar calendar||2398|
- January 5 - King Camp Gillette, American inventor (d. 1932)
- January 20 - Ernest Chausson, French composer (d. 1899)
- January 21 - John Moses Browning, American firearms inventor (d. 1926)
- January 28 - William Seward Burroughs, American bank clerk and inventor (d. 1898)
- March 13 - Percival Lowell, American astronomer (d. 1916)
- March 24 - Andrew Mellon, American banker and philanthropist (d. 1937)
- April 9 - John Marden, Australian Headmaster and pioneer of women's education (d. 1924)
- April 21 - Hardy Richardson, 19th century baseball player (d. 1931)
- April 27 - Caroline Rémy, French feminist (d. 1929)
- May 1 - Marie Corelli, English novelist (d. 1924)
- May 9 - Julius Röntgen, German-Dutch classical composer (d. 1932)
- May 10 - Sri Yukteswar Giri, Author of The Holy Science
- July 26 - Ferdinand Tönnies, German sociologist (d. 1936)
- October 12 - Arthur Nikisch, Hungarian conductor (d. 1922)
- October 21 - Howard Hyde Russell, American activist (d. 1946)
- November 5 - Léon Teisserenc de Bort, French meteorologist (d. 1913)
- November 6 - Ezra Seymour Gosney, American philanthropist and eugenicist (d. 1942)
- December 28 - John William Wood Sr., North Carolinan politician, founder of Benson, North Carolina (d. 1928)
- January 6 - Giacomo Beltrami, Italian explorer (b. 1779)
- January 10 - Mary Russell Mitford, English novelist and dramatist (b. 1787)
- January 26 - Gérard de Nerval, French writer (b. 1808)
- February 6 - Josef Munzinger, Member of the Swiss Federal Council (b. 1791)
- February 23 - Carl Friedrich Gauss, German mathematician, astronomer, and physicist (b. 1777)
- March 2 - Nicholas I of Russia, 11th Tsar of Russia (b. 1796)
- March 8 - William Poole, Infamous member of New York City's Bowery Boys gang (b. 1821)
- March 29 - Henri Druey, Member of the Swiss Federal Council (b. 1799)
- March 31 - Charlotte Brontë, English author (b. 1816)
- May 5 - Robert Inglis, English politician (b. 1786)
- May 23 - Charles Robert Malden English explorer (b. 1797)
- June 28 - Fitzroy Somerset, 1st Lord Raglan, Commander of British forces in the Crimean War (b. 1788)
- June 28 - Pavel Nakhimov, Russian admiral (b. 1802)
- August 7 - Mariano Arista, President of Mexico (b. 1802)
- November 11 - Søren Kierkegaard, Danish philosopher (b. 1813)
- November 26 - Adam Mickiewicz, Lithuanian - Polish poet and writer (b. 1798)
- December 6 - William John Swainson an English naturalist and artist died (b. 1789).