Decades: 1800s 1810s 1820s 1830s 1840s - 1850s - 1860s 1870s 1880s 1890s 1900s
Years: 1846 1847 1848 1849 1850 - 1851 - 1852 1853 1854 1855 1856
January 23 - The flip of a coin determines whether a new city in Oregon is named after Boston, Massachusetts, or Portland, Maine, with Portland winning.
March 27 - First reported case of white men seeing Yosemite Valley.
March 30 - A population census was taken of all people living in the United Kingdom.
May 1 - The Great Exhibition in Hyde Park, London is opened by Queen Victoria. It runs until October 15.
May 15 - Rama IV is crowed King of Thailand.
July - The immortal game, a famous chess game, is played.
July 29 - Annibale De Gasparis, in Naples, Italy discovers asteroid 15 Eunomia.
The first America's Cup is organized (see Yachting).
Gold discovered in Australia.
The New York Times is founded.
Ariel and Umbriel, moonss of Uranus, discovered by William Lassell.
December 2 - Newly-elected French President Louis Napoleon Bonaparte violently overthrows the Second Republic.
December 24 - The Library of Congress burns
December 29 - The first YMCA opens, in Boston, Massachusetts
Year in topic
1851 in literature
Moby Dick published by Herman Melville.
January 19 - Jacobus Kapteyn, Dutch astronomer
March 27 - Vincent d'Indy, composer and teacher (+ 1931)
April 21 - Charles Barrois, geologist
May 20 - Emil Berliner, telephone and recording pioneer
October 31 - Princess Louise of Sweden
February 1 - Mary Shelley, author
March 9 - Hans Christian ěrsted, scientist
September 11 - Sylvester Graham inventor of Graham cracker