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An Historical Time-line of the Greater Himalaya, Central Asia and the Fur Trade in Canada.

Bill Buxton

Last updated Sept. 17, 2018

A work "in progress."

This is a companion page to my pages:
The intent is to compile a time-line that documents the chronology of significant events, with appropriate annotation, relative to the exploration of history of the regions in and periods in question. It is a simple cheat sheet, that helps me remember what happened when, and what the pertinent details were.  Why Central Asia and the Canadian fur trade?  The simple answer is that these happen to be topics whose history interests me, as is reflected in my library.

In order to remain more-or-less within the realm of the manageable, the time line only goes to 1907, which is the date of the Anglo-Russian Convention, the treaty that essentially ended the forward policies in Central Asia which constituted the "Great Game.".

Please think of this as an "open source" page.  As with all of my pages, comments and suggestions are welcome - especially suggestions for additional people to include, mini-biographies for them, or additions,  corrections, etc.  to existing biographical or bibliographic notes.

For detailed timelines of many of the events below, click here.
For a detailed timeline of the history of Afghanistan from 1919 - 2001, click here.

World China and Central Asia North America
ca. 563 B.C
  Birth of  Siddhartha Gautama, the "Buddha"   In north India at Lumbini near the Himalayan foothills.
343-323 BC
  Alexander the Great reaches Central Asia 
and India. 
206 BC - 
220 AD
  Han Dynasties in China   Actually 3 Han Dynasties in this period.
138-125 BC
  Zhang Qian (Chang Ch'ien) in Bactria   Travels to Pamirs. First Chinese on record to have heard about the existence of Tien-chu, or Tianzhu (India).  Reported "discovery" to Emperor Wu.
  Cai Yin travels to India from China.   Sent by Han emperor, Mingdi, to learn about Buddhism.  returns after 3 years with images of Buddha, Buddhist scriptures and two Buddhist monks, She-mo-teng and Chu-fa-lan, to preach in China.
  Invention of paper in China  
  First Roman envoy sent to China   Sent by Marcus Aurelius due to importance of trade on Silk Road. Arrived safely.
  Faxian (Fa-hsien) travels from central China, over Taklamakan Desert to India.   Chinese Buddhist pilgrim, in search of sacred manuscripts,  who wrote of his travels.
Rome is sacked by the Vandals    
Romulus Augustus deposed     Last Roman Emperor in the West.  Effective end of Roman Empire.
Byzantine (Eastern Roman) Empire     Begins with reign of Justinian, ends with fall of Constantinople to Ottoman Turks in 1453.
  Sui Dynasty in China  
  Tang Dynasty in China   The height of the "Silk Road" was achieved during this dynasty.
  Xuanzang (Hiuen Tsiang) travels to India   16 year round trip, including extensive travels in India to visit Buddhist shrines and collect religious manuscripts.
Death of Mohammed    
643, 648, 
657 & 664
  Wang Xuan-ce travels from China to Nepal & India   Chinese diplomat. Made four trips. Took passes through Nepal, rather than Pamirs, reducing travel time to 9 months.
  Gao Xianzhi (Kao Hsien-chih) leads Chinese army of 10,000 overland from Central China to north Pakistan/Kashmir   Through Kyrgistan, Uzbekistan, across Pamirs and Hindu Kush to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Kashmir in an attempt to stem the flow of Islam from West to East Turkestan.
  Sung Dynasty in China   Divided into Northern and Southern Song.  Split was forced by abandonment of north China in 1127 due to invaders.
  Rabbai Benjamin of Tudela   Travels from Spain, through Syria, Bagdad, Persia and to frontiers of China.
  Assembly of Mongolian tribes at Karakorum   Agreed to unite under Genghis Khan
  Genghis Khan captures Beijing   
  Giovanni Pianô Carpine  travels overland to Karakorum   Sent by Pope Innocent IV to court of Great Mogol.
  William of Rubruck travels overland to Karakorum   Sent by Louis IX to court of Great Mogol.
  Kublai Khan makes Beijing his capital city.    Names it Daidu meaning great capital.
1271 / 1295
  Marco Polo trips  to China   Overland to China, through Tibet from Turkey
  Yuan Dynasty in China established by Kublai Khan.   End of Sung Dynasty.  Was Mongol dynasty.
  Ibn Battuta travels   From Tangier, East Africa, Iraq, Persia, India, Maldives, Malaysia & China.
  Oderico of Pordenone in Tibet   Franciscan friar.  From Beijing through Tibet.  Disputed whether he visited Lhasa.
  Ming Dynasty in China  
  Tamerlane (Timur) sacks Delhi  
Fall of Constantinople to Ottoman Turks     End of Byzantine Empire.  Establishes Ottoman Empire, which ended in 1924.
Bartholomeu Dias rounds Cape of Good Hope     First Europeans to round the southern tip of Africa
Columbus first reaches America    
  Treaty of Tordesillas   Pope defined boundary line between Portugese and Spanish territories.
  Vasco da Gamma reaches Calicut, on south west coast of India.   First European to reach India by sea.  Returned to India in 1502.  Goa was made capital of Portugese possessions in India in 1510.
  Portugese first reach China.   Reach Canton under Fernao Peres.
Magellan's first circumnavigation    
1524     Giovanni da Verazzano first European discovery of New York city area.  
  Beginning of the Mughal (a.k.a Mogul or Mongol) Dynasty in India   Started with Babur's defeat of Ibrahim, the Sultan of Delhi at Panipat in the Punjab. 
1534     Jacques Cartier's 1st voyage  
  Anthonie Jenkinson reaches Bokhara   First from Britain, overland via Russia
Sir Francis Drake's circumnavigation    
British defeat of Spanish Armada    
  Honourable East India Company Chartered   By Queen Elizabeth I
  Bento de Goes travels in Tartary   from Agra, via Lahore, Kabul, Yarkand, Aksu, Turfan, Chami, Su-cheu
  Third Voyage of East India Company   First voyage for which India was an object of the venture.
1609     Henry Hudson explores New York city area. Sailing on commission of Dutch East India Company.  Proceeded north along Hudson River as far as Albany.
1610-11     Henry Hudson discovers Hudson's Bay Sailing on commission of British East India Company and Virginia Company.  Maps eastern side of bay.  Winters in James bay.  Crew mutinies in 1611 and set him and supporters adrift.  They then return to England.
1611-14     Dutch explore and map New York area Adriaen Block and Hendrick Christiansz survey and chart the territories discovered by Hudson in 1609.
  Thomas Coryat walks to Agra   Visits court of Great Mogul.  Walks from Aleppo, across Persia and Afghanistan.
1614     Dutch establish trading post up Hudson River Established Fort Nassau near present day Albany.  Abandoned in 1617 and replaced by Fort Orange in 1624.
1624     Dutch establish 1st European colony in area discovered by Hudson/ Established Fort Orange (near current Albany NY) up Hudson River, as well as on what is now Governors Island.  In 1625 the latter colony moved to southern tip of modern day Manhatten.
  Andrade & Marques travel to Tibet   First visit to Tsaparang
  Catholic Mission in Tsaparang, Tibet   Established by Andrade & de Sousa on 2nd visit to Tsaparang. 
  Catholic Mission in Shigatse, Tibet   Established by Cacella & Cabral.
  Azevedo crosses Himalaya   Reaches Leh by Mani Pass and returns to India by Baralacha and Rohtang Passes.
  Qing or Manchu Dynasty in China  
  Grueber & d'Orville Trip through Tibet   Overland from Beijing to Agra via Tibet and Lhasa.  First undisputed Europeans to reach Lhasa.  (See Oderico of Pordenone, 1327).
1664     Dutch colonies in New York fall to English Regained in 1673 but ceded permanently to the English the next year in the Treaty of Westminister.
1668-69     Nonsuch winters in James Bay First English trade voyage to Hudson's Bay.  Radisson and Groseilliers approached English about establishing fur trade in Hudson's Bay. 1668 Groseilliers set off from England on Nonsuch and Radisson on the Eaglet. Latter had to turn back but former spend winter at mouth of Rupert river trading.
1670     Royal Charter granted for Hudson's Bay Company Known as The Governor and Adventurers of England trading into Hudson's Bay. Incorporated May 2. Covered entire Hudson's Bay watershed, known as Rupert's Land.
      Rémey de Courcelle ascends St Lawrence River to Lake Ontario May be the first documented case of a European doing so.
1673     Establishment of Fort Frontenac At present day Kingston, Ontario, at foot of Lake Ontario. Established to curb advance of Iroquois, who were largely aligned with the English, on the north shore of Lake Ontario, as well as a depot for the fur trade.
1677-79     Establishment of shipping on Great Lakes In 1677 Rene Robert Cavalier Sieur de La Salle built 4 brigantines/barques at Fort Frontenac - the first sailing vessels on the Great Lakes. These were to carry goods between Fort Frontenac and the head of Lake Ontario. The first of these, the small 10-ton schooner, the Frontenac, which was wrecked - the first in the Great Lakes - at Hennepin Rock on the Niagara River. The Frontenac had been carrying materials for the construction of a larger ship, the Griffon, which was launched August 7, 1679, the first ship to be built above Niagara Falls. It became the second ship lost in the Great Lakes.
Peter the Great Tsar of Russia    
1690-91     Henry Kelsey's trip  west from Hudson's Bay[1][2] Traveled to Saskatechwan River and to praries on behalf of the HBC.
  Catholic missions in Nepal & Tibet assigned to Capuchins   Papal decree
  First Capuchin mission in Lhasa  
  Desideri & Freyre Trip through Tibet   Delhi, Srinagar, Leh, Lhasa, Kutti, Agra (1716 Freyre returns from Lhasa).  In Lhasa 1716-1721
1713 Treaty of Utrecht     End of War of the Spanish Succession.  France cedes Noerh American lands to the HBC, including Rupert's Land, Acadia, and Newfoundland.
  Signing of the "farman".   Laid foundation for British rights, leading to territorial occupation of India.
  Second Capuchin mission in Lhasa  
  Bekovich expedition to Khiva   Disaster.
  Samuel Van de Putte through Lhasa   Dutch. Overland from India to Beijing, via Lhasa (return via same route).  Destroyed records, other than sketch map.
1731 - 48     La Vérendrye and sons establish string of posts west of Lake Superior as far as La Pas 1731 - Ft St. Pierre, Rainy Lake
1732 - Ft. St. Charles, Lake of Woods
1733 - Ft. La Foret, Winnipeg River
1734 - Ft. Maurepas, Selkirk
1741 - Ft. Bourbon, Cedar Lake
1748 - Ft. Paskoya, La Pas
  D'Anville's Atlas of China published in final volume of  Du Halde's, Description geographiqe, historiqe, politique et physique de l'empire de la Chine et de la Tartarie chioise.   First European map of Tibet.  Much of the Tibetan surveying done by Chinese trained by Europeans.
  Nadir Shah occupies and sacks Moghul capital, Dehli.   Makes off with "Peacock Throne" and the Koh-I-nur diamond  .  Moghul empire in decline.
circa 1740     Horse is first introduced into western Canada The Peigan elder, Saukamappee gave an account to David Thompson of first seeing a horse circa 1739-40 in an encounter with the Snake.  La Vérendrye's son bought 2 horses from Mandan and brought them back to Manitoba in 1741.
  Third Capuchin mission in Lhasa  
1743     Henley House established.  First inland trading post of the HBC. Established 200 k.m. up the Albany River.  Contrary to most histories, Cumberland House (est. 1774) was not the first.
1753     Fort-à-la-Corne established on Saskatchewan River Established by Louis de la Corne, just downstream from junction of North and South Saskatchewan
1754-55     Arthur Henday's first trip inland west on behalf of the HBC  
1756-63 Seven Years War     Settlement terms in Treaty of Paris (see 1763)
  Clive's victory at Battle of Plassey   Settled conflict between French and British.  Secured British power over Bengal.
1759     Battle of the Plains of Abraham September 13th. Part of Seven Years' War. Key battle in terms of British taking control of what was to become Canada from the French.
1763 Treaty of Paris     Ending Seven Years War.
  British acquisition of the diwani to Bengal, Bihar and Orissa.    i.e., revenue rights, from Moghul Emporer resulting in administration of large new territories 
  Captain Kinloch dispatched to Kathmandu to aid Newar king against Gurkha aggression.   Failed mission.  Left in rainy season, were hampered by malaria, and ran short of supplies.
1767-81     Independent traders estabished on Assiniboine River Pine Fort. Traders: Forest Oakes, Charles Boyer & Thomas Corry
  Gurkhas occupy Kathmandu valley  
1769     James Finlay on Saskatchewan River  
Captain James Cook's 1st voyage      
1770-72     Samuel Hearne follows Coppermine River to its mouth on Arctic Ocean. First European to go overland to Arctic Ocean.
  Warren Hastings appointed governor-general of India  
1772-75 Captain James Cook'e 2nd voyage      
1773     Pine Lake Trading Post Established Established by Joseph and Thomas Frobisher. By mouth of Saskatchewan River, on main canoe route to Hudson's Bay, where the Frobisher's intercepted furs en-route to HBC posts, saving the natives an extended trip, but at the same time, disrupting the HBC business.
1774     Frobisher brothers establish post at Frog Portage (Portage du traite) Strategically positioned on Churchill River at the portage to the Sturgeon-Weir River system, which links the Churchill to the Saskatchewan River.
1774     Samuel Hearne establishes Cumberland House. 10 miles west of the NWC Pine Lake post. Second inland trading post established by Hudson's Bay Company - motivated by pressure from NWC. Previously, HBC was based on coast of Hudson's Bay and James Bay, and natives brought furs to them.  Oldest continuously occupied site in Saskatchewan.
  George Bogle in Tibet   First British citizen to cross Himalaya into Tibet.
1775     Hezeta first European to identify existence of the Columbia River. Bruno de Hezeta y Dudagoita, as part of a Spanish reconnaissance of the Pacific NW coast.
American War of Independence     Settlement in Teaty of Paris (see 1783)
1776-79 Captain James Cook's 3rd Voyage      
1778     Peter Pond crosses Methye Portage Thus opened up the Athabaska region to the fur trade
1779     Founding of the North West Company A limited term partnership amongst a number of independent traders.  Banding together partially motivated by incidentApril 22nd on Saskatchewan River at Eagle Hills, where 2 independent Montreal traders - including John Cole - were killed by Cree, largely as a result of trading practices. See also 1783.
      Philip Turnor makes 1st map . 1st mapmaker employed by HBC to map inland. 1st map follows trip to Cumberland house and Upper Hudson House in 1778-9.  Was at Hudson House when independent raders came down from Eagle Hills to escape Cree after April 22nd incident.
1781-82     Great smallpox epidemic in Canadian west The great smallpox epidemic that so affected First Nations people in North America exended from 1775-1782, but only reached Canada, from the south, in full force in 1781. (Fenn, 2001)
  Rennell's Map of Hindoostan first published.  
1783 Treaty of Paris     End of American War of Independence
      Reconstitution of North West Company In 1783, a more permanent and formal partnership was formed.
  Samuel Turner in Tibet   Visited Tashilhunpo / Shigatse. 
  Cornwallis replaces Hastings as governor-general  
  Mont Blanc first climbed.   Highest mountain in Europe.
  Nepal invades Tibet   Tibetans sued for peace and agreed to pay Gurkhas annual indemnity to withdraw.
1789     Alexander MacKenzie reaches Arctic Ocean Descends what is now MacKenzie River.
French Revolution     Bastille stormed July 14 1789
  Second Nepalese invasion of Tibet   Shigatse captured and Tashilhunpo sacked.
1791-95     George Vancouver explores Pacific Northwest Makes first detailed map of inside passage, between Vancouver Island and mainland.  Establishes that there is no northwest passage.  As part of his expedition, Lt. William Robert Broughton went up the Columbia River as far as the Dalles, near the Gorge. Vancouver's journals and charts published in 1798.
  Chinese intervene in Tibet to drive out Gurkhas   (Re)-Established Chinese influence in Tibet, which was not weakened until Japanese defeat of Chinese in1895.
      Robert Gray enters and names Columbia River See earlier 1775 entry for Herzeta.
  Kirkpatrick mission to Nepal  
  Parliament establishes Board of Control of East India Company   Obtains power to approve Governor General
      Alexander Mackenzie reaches Pacific Ocean First European to cross North America north of Mexico.  Reaches Pacific at mouth of Bella Coola River on July 20th.  Learns that he had just missed Vancouver's survey crew (who were there June 2nd).  Mackenzie's journals published in 1801.
1794     Jays Treaty (Treaty of London) Effective 1796, UK to vacate forts in US North West.  UK to stop harassing US shipping.
1796     Fort Michilimackinac taken over by Americans Now in Michigan. Had been important fort for supplying NWC.  One consequence of Jays Treaty.
1798     New Northwest Company (X/Y Company) formed Union of Forsyth, Richardson & Company with Leith, Jamieson & Company. Joined by John Ogilvy andn John Mure of Parker, Gerrard & Oglilvy in 1800. Joined by Sir Alexander MacKenzie in 1802.

World China and Central Asia North America
  Malcolm's mission to Persia   To secure treaty against the French.
  Charles Crawford in Nepal.   Surveys and maps Kathmandu Valley, as well as makes small map of Nepal, based on information from native travelers.
  Regular mail service begins between England & India  
1803     Establishment of Fort William As another consequence of Jays treaty (1794), NWC had to abandon Grand Portage, which was in US territory.  Established fort near old French fort at Kaministiquia.  Named Fort William in 1807.
      Canada Jurisdiction Act 43, Geo. III, c. 138) Justices of the Peace could be appointed in the "Indian Territories" and rimes committed there could be dealr with by the courts n Upper and Lower Canada. (Lamb, 1957. p. 70).
      Louisiana Purchase The USA under President Jefferson purchased the western drainage of the Missisippi, including the Missouri river drainage, from Napolionic France, therefore acquiring the heart of the continent.
1804     X/Y Company absorbed by NWC Given quarter interest in NWC. Sir Alexander MacKenzie was excluded from the union.
1805     Lewis and Clark Expedition reach Pacific Ocean The expedition began in 1803, with organizing supplies to be shipped to Fort Dubois, just north of St. Lewis, where the team was assembled and wintered.  Prime objective was to determine feasibility of inland water route to the Pacific.  In keeping with manifest destiny, also intended to establish tie across, and consolidate, the eastern colonies with newly acquired Louisiana Territories, and the west coast - especially the Columbia River drainage- and in the process, gain advantage over the Canadians in the lucrative fur trade. The publication of George Vancouver’s journals and charts in 1798 and Alexander Mackenzie's journals in 1801 both gave urgency to this mission, as well as paved the way. Arrived back St. Louis Sept 23rd, 1806.  Lewis arrived in Washington in December and Clark in January 1807.
1805     Fort McLeod established in New Caledonia Established by Simon Fraser and John Stuart. The oldest continuously occupied settlement west of the Rocky Mountains in Canada. Named after Archibald Norman McLeod, a NWC fur-trader.
  Webb, Raper and Hearsey survey source of eastern branch of Ganges.  
      Simon Fraser follows Fraser River to Pacific Left Fort George (at confluence of Fraser and Nechako Rivers, near north hook of the Fraser) in late May, reached mouth of Fraser on July 2nd, and returned to Fort George on August 6th. Accompanied by John Stuart, JM. Quesnel, 12 Canadian voyageurs, and native guides.
  Capt. W.P. Grant explores coastline of Makran.   To determine feasibility as overland route for invasion of India.  Concluded it was.
  Metcalf's treaty with Ranjit Singh   Extends British influence to Sutlej.
  Pottinger and Christie's exploration in Baluchistan, southern Afghanistan and then on to Persia  
1811     May 29: HBC approves Red River / Assiniboia land grant to Lord Selkirk  
      Pacific Fur Company established Underwritten from New York by Astor, established fort (Astoria) at the mouth of the Columbia River. Inhabitants reached location by ship, the Tonquin, from NY. The Tonquin then went on a trading mission, but was seized by natives on the west coast of Vancouver Island, at Clayoquot Sound, and all hands were killed.
      David Thompson follows Columbia River to its mouth. Started exploring the Columbia in 1807, at its source, and continued over a few seasons.  On reaching the mouth in 1811, he was first to have travelled its full length.
  Thomas Manning in Lhasa   First Englishman to visit Lhasa.
  Moorcroft & Hearsey in western Tibet 1st Selkirk settlers arrive late in season in Assiniboia.
  Russian annexation of Georgia  
1814     Jan 8th: Miles Macdonell issues Pemmican Proclamation

April 23rd: Isaac Todd arrives at Fort George (Astoria) at mouth of Columbia River
June 29th: Columbia arrives at Fort George.

      First occasion that trading posts in interior of British Columbia were supplied from England via the west coast. June 29th: Isaac Todd carries furs from Fort George (Astoria) to China, establishing trans-globe circuit of trade-goods from England to Fort George, furs from there to China, then China goods to England.
  Treaty of Ghent   First shipment of furs from North America direct to Orient December. End of the war of 1812
  Anglo-Nepalese War   Prompted by repeated forays by Gurkhas into British held territories.  Treaty of Segauli (I believe signed on November 28 1815 but not ratified by Nepalese until March, 1816) ceded territories of Kumaon and Garhwal in western Nepal to the British, giving them their first common border with Tibet.
1816     June 19: Battle of Seven Oaks  
  Treaty of Titalia   Negotiated by Captain Latter, in Feb. 1817, following Anglo-Nepalese war, guaranteed security of Sikkim by British, returned land to Sikkim that had been annexed by Nepalese, and gave British trading rights in Sikkim, up to Tibetan border.
  Alexander Csoma de Körösi travels from Hungary to Ladakh   Meets Moorcroft
  Ranjit Singh conquers Kashmir & Jammu   End of Afghan rule of Kashmir.
  Nikolai Muraviev travels from Georgia to Khiva   Report on Russian slaves contributed to Russian justification for future annexation of khanates in central Asia.
  Moorcroft & Trebeck travel to Turkistan   Reach Bokhara in 1824 via Ladakh, Kashmir, Punjab, Kabul.
  Russians reach Bokhara   Beat English by 4 years.  Establish trade links.
1821     June 1: Unification of NWC and HBC HBC eventually won the competition, largely due to easier access to the west from Hudson's Bay.
  Sikhs defeat Durranis and capture Peshawar   (Durranis are group of Pashtoon who live in the area around the city of Qandahar)
  Moorcroft & Trebeck  reach Bokhara   First Englishman there.
  Stockton & Darlington Railroad Company in Britain   First railroad to carry both goods and passengers on regular schedules using locomotives designed by George Stephenson
  First Anglo-Burmese War   Ceded territory of Assam to British. Ref: [1]
  First road in India   Bombay to Poona
1831 First passenger rail service opens in UK     From Liverpool to Manchester
  Burnes trip to Bukhara   visits Peshawar, en route
1834     Selkirk Red River grant reverts to HBC  
  Dost Mohammed becomes Amir of Afghanistan  
  Lord Auckland becomes Governor-General  
  Burnes mission to Kabul  
  Persia besieges Herat  
Queen Victoria ascends to throne    
  Wood explores upper Oxus River  
  Perovsky's expedition to Khiva   Force of 5,00 from Orenburg.  Disaster.  Defeated by winter, and retreated en route with heavy losses.
  Death of Ranjit Singh  
  First Anglo-Afghan War   Refs: [1][2][3]
  Abbott in Khiva   From India, then on to St. Petersburg
  Start of Grand Trunk Road   Calcutta to Delhi
  Shakespear frees Russian slaves in Khiva  
  War between Tibet and state of Jummu and Kashmir.    (Latter states not yet under British control.) 
  Stoddart & Conolly killed by Emir of Bokhara  
  Mail Steamship to India from Britain  
British acquire Hong Kong     Changes British access to China, which up to this point had been restricted to being through Canton, which had made access to China through Tibet attractive.
  Darjeeling linked to plains by military road  

World China and Central Asia North America
1843   Dost Mohammed resumes throne in Afghanistan   Following flight in 1839 and exile in India in 1840.
  First Anglo-Sikh War   Resulted in Treaty of Lahore, which granted Britain all Sikh hill possessions between Sutlej and Indus.  Followed 1 week later by Treaty of Amritsar, which granted included territories of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh to Gulab Singh. Refs:  [1]
  Abbe Huc & Gabet  Tartary - China   Traveled through Tibet. In Lhasa in 1846
1848-1849   Second Anglo-Sikh War   Ref: 1, 2.  Ended in the Treaty of Annexation.
1849     Sawyer Trial, Red River:  essentially breaks HBC fur trade monopoly  
1850-1858   Construction of the Hindustan-Tibet road   Went from Indian plains, through Simla (the summer capital of British India), Bashahar, to Shipki, on Tibetan border.
  Second Anglo-Burmese War   Ref; [1]
  First railways and telegraph in India  
Crimean War     France and Britain defeat Russia.
  Sepoy Revolt / Indian Mutiny  
  British Government takes over governing India   Lord Canning, then Governor General, becomes first Viceroy.
  Bahadur Shah II exiled to Burma   Last of the 17 Mogul Emperor.  Dies in 1862.
1859     First steamboat operating on the Red River. Provides link for shipping goods delivered by railroad to St. Paul, Min. to Fort Garry (Winnipeg).
  Russia opens consulate in Kashgar  
1861   Goodwin-Austin surveying in Karakoram    
US Civil War    
First ascent of the Matterhorn     By Edmund Whymper.  Golden age of climbing in Europe.
  First telegraph system opens between Europe and India  
  Yakob Beg establishes control over "Kashgaria"   Establishes Muslim state in what was Chinese Turkistan
  Bokhara invaded by Russians   1868 becomes Russian protectorate
  Samarkand fell to Russians  
1868   Freshfield, Moore & Tuckers climbing in Caucasus    
  1st trip of Pundit Mirza   India - Kabul - Pamirs - Kashgar - Yarkand - India
  Shaw and Hayward in Yarkand and Kashgar   Shaw is first from Britain to visit.
      Nov. 19: HBC deeded Rupert's Land territory to British Crown. Transfer from Crown to Canada not effective until July 15, 1870, due to Red River Rebellion. / Resistance
1869-70     Red River Rebellion / Resistance  
  Direct submarine cable from India to Britain   Establishes secure and rapid communications
Opening of Suez Canal     Britain buys Egypt's 40% share to secure access, esp. to India. Now 3 weeks, rathe than 3 months to India from Britain.
  1st Forsyth Mission   To Kashgar to establish trade with Yakob Beg.  Failure
  Przhevalsky's first expedition  
  Russians annex Ili  
      Last year that fur brigade goes to York Factory.  
1872     1st Steamer, The Commissioner, on Lake Winnipeg Carried goods between Fort Garry (Winnipeg) and Grand Rapids.
  Khiva falls to Russians   gain navigational control over lower Oxus
  2nd Forsyth Mission   To Kashgar to establish trade with Yakob Beg.  Resulted in valuable surveying.
Disraeli becomes Prime Minister of Britain     Switch to aggressive forward policy
      First steamer to successfully run on the Saskatchewan River, The Northcote. An unnamed steamer had been built and launched in 1873, but was dstroyed in rapids 13 miles from launch site on its first run.  The Northcote brought goods to/from Grand Rapids, and went as far as Fort Edmonton.
  Second Anglo-Afghan War   Refs: [1] [2] [3]
  Russian, Dr. Regel exploring in Pamirs  
1883   Graham climbing in East Himalaya   Arguably first recreational climber in region from Europe.  Began in eastern mountains, then in Garhwal.
  Russian occupation of Merv  
  Lockhart Surveys   Determined the feasibility of Russian invasion  through Hindu Kush
  Britain annexes Upper Burma 
Burma-Tibet Convention
  Chinese claimed suzerainty.  Completed British control of Burma, which began with the Anglo-Burmese War of 1824–26.
  Younghusband's east-west trip from China to India   Beijing - Gobi Desert - Kirghiz - Kashgar - Yarkand - Mustagh Pass - Kashmir - Srinagar
  Trans-Caspian railroad extended to Samarkand  
  British forces drive Tibetan troops out of Sikkim  
  Younghusband and Gromchevsky meet on frontier north of Hunza.  
1890   Roberto Lerco to base of K2    
  Convention Between Great Britain and China Relating to Sikkim and Tibet   Defined Sikkim-Tibet frontier, and established British control over Sikkim.  Between Britain and China  (significantly, not Tibet.) 
  Conway exploring in Karakoram   To Hispar Pass, along the Biafo and Baltero Glaciers, K2, Skardo
  Dutreuil de Rhins killed in Western Tibet  
Sino-Japanese War     Japanese defeat Chinese.  This opened door, for the first time since the Chinese intervention in the Gurkha-Tibetan conflict in 1792, for Tibet to attempt to conduct its own foreign policy.
  Littledales travel in Tibet   Travel east from Kashgar, through northern Tibet, then south to within 45 miles of Lhasa, then turned back.
  Anglo-Russian Convention   Established the Wakham Strip of Afghanistan separating Russian and British territories.
  Collie, Hastings, Mumery on Nanga Parbat   Mummery, Ragobir & Goman Singh killed.  Bruce with expedition part of time.
1898 (?)
  Kawaguchi in Lhasa   Japanese monk.  Entered monastery in Lhasa.
  Aguan Dorjief's missions to St. Petersburg   Russian Buddhist monk from Lhasa
Boer War    
  Boxer uprising in China   Against European acquisition of ports and trade.  Put down by joint European forces.
1902   Crowley, Eckenstein, Knowles, Jacot-Guiooarmod,Pfannl & Wessely attempt K2   First to try what later came to be known as Abruzzi Ridge
  Younghusband Mission to Lhasa   British invasion of Tibet
  Russo-Japanese War   Japanese want to stem Russian influence in Pacific.
  Lhasa Convention   British settlement with Tibet. 
  Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting Tibet (Peking Treaty)   British and China over Tibet.
  Convention Between Great Britain and Russian   End of classical "Great Game" in Central Asia.
1909   Abruzzi expedition to K2    

Key References and other relevant timelines: