As the Roaring Twenties drew to a close and the world entered a new decade, the Wall Street Crash of 1929 had prompted a rather depressing start to the thirties. While the hope and prosperity of the twenties seemed to have dissolved, 1930 was still a year full of interesting and positive events. 

This 1930 timeline shows you some of the biggest events of 1930, giving an overview of the history of the year. 1930 was the year that the first football World Cup took place, Mickey Mouse made his first appearance in comic form, and Pluto was officially discovered and named as a planet. 

To discover even more 1930 events for yourself, see how the biggest news stories were reported in an original 1930 newspaper.

bonnie and clyde

Criminal couple Bonnie and Clyde.

1930 Timeline

Jump to:

  1. January
  2. February
  3. March
  4. April
  5. May
  6. June
  7. July
  8. August
  9. September
  10. October
  11. November
  12. December

The Salt Tax in India

Pluto Discovered as a Planet

First ever FIFA World Cup

The Great Depression in 1930


January 5: Criminal couple Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow meet for the first time at Clarence Clay’s house.

January 6: The first diesel engine automobile trip is made in a Packard sedan.

January 7: The last naturally occurring element to be found, francium (Fr), is discovered by Marguerite Perey.

January 10: Nephew of Walt Disney and long-time senior executive for The Walt Disney Company, Roy E. Disney is born in Los Angeles, US.

January 10: New Zealand’s 1st Test commences against England in Christchurch, New Zealand.

January 13: The Mickey Mouse comic strip first appears, following 15 successful animated short films.

January 15: West Indian cricket batsman George Headley scores 157 out of 176 on debut on the 4th day of the drawn 1st Test against England in Bridgetown, Barbados.

January 20: American astronaut and fighter pilot Buzz Aldrin is born.

January 23: The George Washington Birthplace National Monument is established in Virginia. 


February 4: The Indochinese Communist Party of Vietnam is established.

February 18: Clyde Tombaugh, US astronomer, discovers Pluto. 

February 26: West Indies makes its 1st Test Cricket win by 289 runs over England.

February 26: The first red and green traffic lights are installed in Manhattan, NYC. 

February 27: Bouvet Island declares a Norwegian independency.

clyde tombaugh

US astronomer and discoverer of Pluto, Clyde Tombaugh. 


March 2: D. H. Lawrence, English poet and writer, dies of tuberculosis at the age of 44.

March 4: The Coolidge Dam in Arizona is dedicated.

March 4: Floods in Languedoc and the surrounding areas in South-West France result in 12 departments being submerged by water and kill over 700 people. 

March 6: Inventor Clarence Birdseye markets the first frozen foods.

March 8: Baseball legend Babe Ruth signs a 2 year contract for $160,000 with NY Yankees.

March 8: The 27th president of the United States, William Howard Taft, dies in Washington. He served as the US president from 1909 to 1913.

March 12: Mahatma Gandhi begins his 200m march protesting British salt tax.

March 20: KFC, the American fast food chain, is established by Colonel Harland Sanders in Kentucky.

March 20: Women in Turkey are given the right to vote in municipal elections.

March 28: Constantinople and Angora change their names to Istanbul and Ankara.

March 31: As the movie industry continued to boom, the Motion Pictures Production Code is put in place, imposing strict guidelines on the use of sex, crime, religion and violence in film for the following 38 years.


mahatma gandhi

Mahatma Gandhi.


April 4: France starts to build the Maginot Line, which was intended to be a barrier against German aggression.

April 6: The first transcontinental glider tow is completed. 

April 18: BBC News announces “there is no news” at 8:45pm, and plays music during the remaining 15 minute news slot instead.  

April 22: Britain, the US and Japan sign the London Naval Treaty. The treaty was brought in to regulate naval shipbuilding and submarine warfare, putting restrictions on certain things such as the number of heavy cruisers a country was allowed to have.

April 29: The first telephone connection between Britain and Australia goes into operation.

April 30: The USSR proposes a military alliance with Britain and France, hoping to achieve national security. 


london naval conference

US delegates on their way to the London Naval Conference.


May 1: The planet Pluto is officially named by Venetia Burney, who was 11 years old at the time.

May 6: Iran is hit by the Great Salmas Earthquake, measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale and killing around 4,000 people.

May 15: Ellen Church is the first female airline stewardess aboard a United flight from San Francisco to Cheyenne. 

May 19: White women in South Africa win voting rights. 

May 24: Amy Johnson becomes the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia. 

May 26: After Prohibition of the 1920s and negative views of alcohol in American society, the American Supreme Court rules that buying liquor doesn’t violate the US Constitution.

May 31: American actor Clint Eastwood is born in San Francisco, California. 

May 27: The Chrysler Building in New York City first opens to the public. At the time, it was the tallest man-made structure, measuring 319 metres tall.

clint eastwood

American actor Clint Eastwood.


June 9: Jake Lingle, a Chicago Tribune reporter, is killed during rush hour at the Illinois Central train station, apparently due to a $100,000 gambling debt that he owed Al Capone. He is killed by the Leo Vincent Brothers. 

June 24: The first radar detection of planes is made at Anacostia, D.C. 

June 30: France removes its troops from Germany’s Rhineland. One of the clauses in the Treaty of Versailles declared that Germany was not allowed to militarily occupy the Rhineland, and instead Allied troops were allowed to move in. This was to prevent any possible future threat to France and the rest of Europe. However, on this day in 1930, the final Allied troops were removed from the area. 


July 1: Britain signs the accord for Iraq’s independence.

July 3: The US Veterans Administration is created. 

July 7:  Construction begins on the Hoover Dam.

July 7: Arthur Conan Doyle, writer of Sherlock Holmes, dies at the age of 71. 

July 13: The first ever FIFA World Cup tournament takes place in Uruguay.

July 19: A polar expedition team consisting of Richard E. Byrd, Laurence McKinley Gould, and their polar expedition team return to the US after they had completed the first exploration of Antarctica’s interior.

July 30: The first ever World Cup final takes place, with Uruguay beating Argentina 4-2.

first world cup

Uruguay goal against Argentina, first FIFA World Cup final.


August 4: Child labour laws are established in Belgium. 

August 5: Neil Armstrong, American astronaut and first man on the moon, is born in Ohio, USA.

August 9: The popular cartoon character Betty Boop makes her debut.

August 12: Clarence Birdseye is granted a patent for his method of quick freezing food.

August 21: Her Royal Highness the Princess Margaret is born. As the youngest daughter of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, she is the sister to the current Queen Elizabeth II of England. 

August 25: Sean Connery, Scottish actor and producer (James Bond, Indiana Jones) is born in Edinburgh, Scotland.


September 2: The first non-stop airplane flight takes place from Europe to the USA, taking 37 hours.

September 23: The soul music pioneer Ray Charles is born in Georgia, USA.


October 20: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes premieres on NBC radio.

October 30: Turkey and Greece sign a friendship treaty. 


November 3: The Bank of Italy is renamed Bank of America.

November 11: Albert Einstein and Leó Szilárd are awarded patent number US1781541 for inventing the Einstein refrigerator.  


December 2: The Great Depression: President Hoover asks for a $150 million public works program to help create jobs and stimulate the failing American economy. 

December 8: Broadway Theater opens at 1681 Broadway, New York City. 

December 19: Mount Merapi in Indonesia erupts and 14,000 people are killed. The sudden explosion of gas and rock destroys 13 nearby villages.

December 23: Bette Davis arrives in Hollywood under contract to Universal Studios.

December 31: The US tobacco industry announces it produced 123 billion cigarettes this year. 


great depression

In the midst of the Great Depression: Unemployed men queuing for a soup kitchen, 1930s.

The Salt March in India (March 12)

The Salt March took place in India from March 12 to 6 April 1930 and was led by Mahatma Gandhi. The march was an act of civil disobedience in order to protest British rule in India. Thousands of Indians followed Gandhi from his retreat near Ahmedabad to the Arabian Sea Coast, marching around 240 miles. Nearly 60,000 people were arrested, including Gandhi.

The march was immediately responding to Britain’s Salt Act of 1882, which restricted Indians from collecting or selling salt. The mineral was a staple of Indian diets, and they were forced to collect salt directly from their British rulers. In turn, Britain charged a heavy salt tax, which made acquiring salt expensive and more difficult for the people of India. While poor people in India struggled under most taxes, the salt tax was affecting something fundamental to their food. 

The march did have a degree of success, contributing to the eventual independence granted to India in 1947. In 1931, Gandhi was released from prison and he traveled to London for a conference to discuss matters. While Gandhi didn’t achieve immediate success from the conference, it became quickly apparent that British leaders were unable to avoid his force. 

Pluto Discovered as a Planet (February 18)

On February 18 1930, Clyde Tombaugh discovered Pluto. It was, and still is, the largest known plutoid to be found and was the first Kuiper Belt object to be discovered. For the following 75 years, Pluto was classed as the 9th planet in the solar system, following on from Neptune. On May 1, the planet was named by 11 year old Venetia Burney, suggesting the name to reflect the classical mythological god of the underworld. The name also honours Percival Lowell, who began the search for a planet beyond Neptune. The first two letters of Pluto are the initials of Percival Lowell. 

While Pluto was classed as a planet for so long, it’s status was being challenged at the start of the 1990s, since other objects had been found that were the same size as Pluto. After the term “planet” was properly defined, Pluto was officially demoted to a “dwarf planet” in 2006.

First Ever FIFA World Cup (July 13)

On this day, the first ever FIFA World Cup took place in Uruguay. FIFA chose Uruguay as the host nation, since the country was celebrating the centenary of its first constitution and in 1928, the Uruguay national football team had retained their football title at the Olympics. 

Games were played at the country’s capital of Montevideo. Uruguay defeated Argentina in the final on July 30, making the country the first ever World Cup champions. 

The Great Depression in 1930

It was on December 2 1930 that President Herbert Hoover addressed a State of the Union to make awareness of America’s economic situation. Following the Wall Street Crash and the beginning of the Great Depression, the US economy was suffering desperately and it was time for the government to act upon this, despite always having a laissez-faire approach to economic affairs. 

Despite claiming that “Substantial progress has been made during the year in national peace and security,” the US and the rest of the world would continue to face challenges with lack of jobs, unemployment and homelessness. Hoover would then ask the government for a $150 million public works program to provide jobs for the unemployed and eventual stimulate the economy. This was a big change to the American government and went against Hoover’s initial beliefs that the economy would be able to sort itself out without any intervention.