1886 in the United States
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Events from the year 1886 in the United States.
- President: Grover Cleveland (D-New York)
- Vice President: vacant
- Chief Justice: Morrison Waite (Ohio)
- Speaker of the House of Representatives: John G. Carlisle (D-Kentucky)
- Congress: 49th
- February 6–9 – Seattle riot of 1886: Anti-Chinese sentiments result in riots in Seattle, Washington.
- February 14 – The first train load of oranges leaves Los Angeles via the transcontinental railroad.
- March 17 – Carrollton Massacre: 20 African Americans are killed in Mississippi.
- April 24 – Father Augustine Tolton, the first Roman Catholic priest from the U.S. to identify himself publicly as African American, is ordained in Rome.
- May 1 – A general strike begins in the United States, which escalates on May 4 into the Haymarket affair in Chicago and eventually wins the eight-hour workday in the U.S.
- May 8 – Pharmacist Dr. John Stith Pemberton invents a carbonated beverage that will be named 'Coca-Cola'.
- May 17 – Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad: The U.S. Supreme Court rules that corporations have the same rights as living persons.
- May 29 – Pharmacist John Pemberton begins to advertise Coca-Cola (advertisement in the Atlanta Journal).
- June 2 – U.S. President Grover Cleveland marries Frances Folsom in the White House, becoming the only president to wed in the executive mansion. She is 27 years his junior.
- June 9 – The centennial of the Stoughton Musical Society is celebrated.
- July 23 – Steve Brodie is reported to have made a jump from the Brooklyn Bridge, a claim subsequently disputed.
- August 20 – A massive hurricane demolishes the town of Indianola, Texas.
- August 31 – The 6.9–7.3 Mw Charleston earthquake affects southeastern South Carolina with a maximum Mercalli intensity of X (Extreme). Sixty people are killed and damage is estimated at $5–6 million.
- September 4 – Indian Wars: After almost 30 years of fighting, Apache leader Geronimo surrenders with his last band of warriors to General Nelson Miles at Skeleton Canyon in Arizona.
- October 28 – In New York Harbor, U.S. President Grover Cleveland dedicates the Statue of Liberty.
- Gilded Age (1869–c. 1896)
- October 23 - American Association's St. Louis Browns win the First (Unofficial) 1886 World Series by defeating the National League's Chicago White Stockings 4 games to 2. Final game was played at Sportsman's Park in St. Louis, Missouri
- January 3 – John G. Fletcher, poet and author (died 1950)
- January 11 – Chester Conklin, comic film actor (died 1971)
- February 27 – Hugo Black, U.S. Senator from Alabama from 1927 to 1937 and Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1937 to 1971 (died 1971)
- March 7 – Jessie Coles Grayson, African American contralto and film actress (died 1953)
- March 8 – Edward Calvin Kendall, biochemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1950 (died 1972)
- March 9 – Robert L. Eichelberger, general (died 1961)
- March 24 – Edward Weston, photographer (died 1958)
- April 3 – Dooley Wilson, African American drummer, singer and actor (died 1953)
- c. April 26 – Ma Rainey, born Gertrude Malissa Nix Pridgett, African American blues singer (died 1939)
- May 26 – Al Jolson, entertainer (died 1950)
- June 6 – Tyler Brooke, actor and singer (died 1943)
- October 30 – Zoë Akins, dramatist (died 1958)
- November 9 – Ed Wynn, actor (died 1966)
- December 5 – Rose Wilder Lane, journalist and libertarian (died 1968)
- December 9 – Clarence Birdseye, founder of the modern frozen food industry (died 1956)
- December 18 – Ty Cobb, baseball outfielder (died 1961)
- December 19 – Charles M. Cooke, Jr., admiral (died 1970)
- December 25 – Kid Ory, jazz trombonist and bandleader (died 1973)
- January 13 – Thomas Wakeman, founded the first Sioux Indian YMCA (born 1846)
- January 22 – James T. Farley, U.S. Senator from California from 1879 to 1885. (born 1829)
- January 26 – David Rice Atchison, U.S. Senator from Missouri from 1844 to 1855 (born 1807)
- February 9 – Winfield Scott Hancock, Civil War Union general and political candidate (born 1824)
- February 12 – Horatio Seymour, 18th Governor of New York, Democratic Party nominee for President of the United States in the presidential election of 1868 (born 1810)
- March 8 – John Franklin Miller, U.S. Senator from California from 1881 to 1886 (born 1831)
- March 9 – Jerome B. Chaffee, U.S. Senator from Colorado from 1876 to 1879 (born 1825)
- March 13 – Austin Flint, co-founder of Buffalo Medical College and president of the American Medical Association (born 1812)
- April 27 – H. H. Richardson, architect (born 1838)
- May 15 – Emily Dickinson, poet (born 1830)
- May 21 – Stephen Pearl Andrews, anarchist and proponent of pantarchy (born 1812)
- June 26 – David Davis, U.S. Senator from Illinois from 1877 to 1883 (born 1815)
- July 16 – Ned Buntline (Edward Zane Carroll Judson Sr.), publisher, dime novelist and publicist (born 1821)
- August 4 – Samuel J. Tilden, 25th Governor of New York from 1875 to 1876 and 1876 Democratic presidential candidate (born 1814)
- August 5 – Robert Allen, Union army brigadier general (born 1811)
- August 10 – John W. Stevenson, U.S. Senator from Kentucky from 1871 to 1877 (born 1812)
- October 10 – David Levy Yulee, U.S. Senator from Florida from 1845 to 1851 and from 1855 to 1861 (born 1810)
- November 18 – Chester A. Arthur, 21st President of the United States from 1881 to 1885, 20th Vice President of the United States from March to September 1881 (born 1829)
- November 21 – Charles Francis Adams Sr., United States Minister to the United Kingdom, son of John Quincy Adams (born 1807)
- December 26 – John A. Logan, U.S. Senator from Illinois from 1871 to 1877 (born 1826)
- Media related to 1886 in the United States at Wikimedia Commons