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1870 1871 1872 1873 1874
| Decades: |
1850s 1860s - 1870s - 1880s 1890s
| 19th century|
In the 1870s new empires rise in Europe and Asia. Germany declares independence in 1871 and begins its Second Reich. Labor unions and strikes occur worldwide in the later part of the decade, and continue until World War I. In America, reconstruction of the American South continues until 1877.
Events and trends
- The prototype telephone was invented by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876.
- A version of the light bulb was invented by Thomas Edison.
- The phonograph is invented in 1877 by Thomas Edison.
- The steam drill is invented in 1879.
War, peace and politics
- Franco-Prussian War (1870–1871) resulted in the collapse of the Second French Empire and in the formation of both the French Third Republic and the German Empire.
- The Anglo-Zulu War lasted from January 11, 1879 to July 4, 1879.
- The Third Carlist War (1872–1876) was the last Carlist War in Spain.
- The British Empire continued to grow; this decade marked the beginning of the New Imperialism
- Bulgaria and Romania declared independence following a war against the Ottoman Empire.
- Passive resistance was used to prevent the confiscation of Māori land at Parihaka in New Zealand
- The German Empire and Alliance System emerged.
- Racial and economic politics in America's Reconstruction are bitter, pessimistic, and sometimes violent.
- The Gilded Age begins in 1874, lasting until 1896.
- Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878)
Literature and Arts
- Jules Verne (France) publishes Around The World in Eighty Days
- In the United States, continuation of post-Civil War reconstruction until its conclusion under President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1877
- Jeanne Calment, born 1875, would eventually become the longest-living human being in recorded history. She lived until 1997, at the age of 122. She still holds the record as of 2009.
- Henrik Ibsen releases A Doll's House in 1879
- Emperor Franz Josef (Austria-Hungary)
- Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald (Canada)
- Prime Minister Alexander Mackenzie (Canada)
- Tongzhi Emperor (China)
- Guangxu Emperor (China)
- Emperor Wilhelm I (German Empire)
- Chancellor Otto von Bismarck (German Empire)
- King Victor Emmanuel II (Italy)
- King Umberto I (Italy)
- Emperor Meiji (Japan)
- Pope Pius IX
- Pope Leo XIII
- Emperor Alexander II (Russia)
- King Alfonso XII (Spain)
- Queen Victoria (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland)
- Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland)
- Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland)
- President Ulysses S. Grant (United States)
- President Rutherford B. Hayes (United States)
- Nasser-al-Din Shah of Qajar dynasty (Persia)