Famous Firsts of the 1500s, 1600s, 1700s
Ivan IV (the Terrible): 1st ruler of Russia to assume the title of tsar.
Queen Mary I (Bloody Mary): 1st reigning Queen of England and Queen of Ireland from 6 July 1553 (de jure) or 19 July 1553 (de facto) until her death.
Sofinisba Anguissola: 1st woman artist to gain prominence as a painter. (she was invited to Spain to serve as a court painter and lady-in-waiting to the Queen, Elizabeth of Valois, and remained for 10 years.)
Virginia Dare: 1st child to be born (August 18) in America of English parents on Roanoke Island in the Colony of Roanoke, now in North Carolina.
Anne Bradstreet: Anne Bradstreet's book of poems, The Tenth Muse Lately Sprung Up in America, is published in England, making her the 1st published American woman writer.
Henrietta Johnston: begins to work as a portrait artist in Charles Town (now Charleston), South Carolina, making her the 1st known professional woman artist in America.
Benjamin Franklin: Franklin was named postmaster of Philadelphia by the British Crown in 1737 and in 1753 was appointed joint postmaster general for the American colonies.
Ann Franklin: 1st woman U.S. newspaper editor, "The Newport Mercury" in Newport, RI.
Mary Katherine Goddard: Goddard and her widowed mother become publishers of the Providence Gazette newspaper and the annual West's Almanack, making her the 1st woman publisher in America. In 1775, Goddard became the 1st woman postmaster in the country (in Baltimore), and in 1777 she became the 1st printer to offer copies of the Declaration of Independence that included the signers' names. In 1789 Goddard opened a Baltimore bookstore, probably the 1st woman in America to do so.
Anne Catherine Hoof Green: 1st American woman to run a print shop.
James Cook: one of the 1st to cross the Antarctic Circle on January 17.
Margaret Corbin: 1st woman to be awarded a disability pension by US Congress after fighting and being wounded in the Revolutionary War.
Marquis d'Arlandes and Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier: 1st manned free flight in history. Pioneers of hot air ballooning. They flew for the first time in Paris on November 21.
John Jay: 1st , as well as the youngest, Chief Justice of the United States from 1789 to 1794.
Frederick Muhlenberg: 1st Speaker of the United States House of Representatives.
Edmund Randolph: 1st United States Attorney General.
George Washington: Commander in Chief of American forces in the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783), and later, the 1st President of the United States, an office he held from 1789 to 1797. He played central role in the founding of the United States and is often called the "Father of his Country". Scholars rank him among the greatest of United States presidents.
Martha Washington: 1st First Lady of the United States (although that title was not coined until after her death; she was simply known as "Lady Washington").
Samuel Hopkins: 1st U.S. patent for an improvement "in the making Pot ash and Pearl ash by a new Apparatus and Process."
Henry Laurens - Charleston, South Carolina statesman: 1st formal cremation in US. He left instructions in his will.
Anne Parrish: establishes, in Philadelphia, the House of Industry, the 1st charitable organization for women in America.
William Blount: Blount was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention for North Carolina, 1st and only governor of the Southwest Territory, and Republican Senator from Tennessee (1796-1797). He played a major role in establishing the state of Tennessee. He was the 1st U.S. Senator to be expelled from the Senate.
André-Jacques Garnerin: 1st parachute jump with a Silk parachute on October 22, 1797, jumping out of a balloon over Parc Monceau, Paris. After a descent of 3000 feet, he landed without injury in front of an admiring crowd. On October 3-4 1803, he covered a distance of 395 km between Paris and Clausen with his balloon. His wife Jeanne-Genevieve was the 1st woman parachutist.
Benjamin Stoddert: 1st United States Secretary of the Navy from May 1, 1798 to March 31, 1801.
Count de Grisley: 1st magician to perform the trick of sawing a woman in half.