Chronography of Switzerland and Liechtenstein
Page last modified 31 March 2023
Leichetenstein � see Appendix 1
Click here for map of Lausanne � Thonon area, 1955 and 2000. See also France for more old-new maps.
9/2/2014, In a referendum, 50.3% of voters backed a quota on immigration proposed by the Right-wing Swiss Peoples Party (SVP). Turnout was 56%. A quarter of the Swiss population are immigrants. The Francophone west was opposed to quotas but the German-speaking east backed them. The EU criticised the vote; although Switzerland is not part of the EU it has close economic ties with it, and is part of the Schengen Agreement. The Swiss Government and business leaders opposed the quotas.
12 December 2008, Switzerland became the 25th country to join the Schengen Agreement, eliminating cross-border checks.
10 September 2002, Switzerland joined the United Nations.
3 March 2002, Switzerland voted in a referendum to join the United Nations.
2001, Switzerland rejected EU membership in a referendum.
5 October 1994, Fifty members of the Solar Temple cult were found dead in Switzerland.
1992, Switzerland joined the IMF and the World Bank.
1986, A referendum opposed joining the United Nations, and immigrant numbers were restricted.
28 July 1984. George Gallup, whose name is synonymous with opinion polls, died in Switzerland aged 62.
3 December 1972, Swiss voters approved a Free Trade Agreement with the European Community by 1,345,057 votes to 509,350 against.
1971, Most women gained the right to vote in Federal elections.
1967, Right wing political groups made gains, campaigning to restrict immigration.
1959, Switzerland became a founder member of the European Free Trade Area (EFTA).
19 July 1945, Heinrich Wolfflin, Swiss art historian, died aged 81.
1939-1945, Switzerland remained neutral during World War Two.
5 June 1935, The Swiss government began major armament expansion program.
31 March 1928, Gustave Ador, Swiss statesman (born 23 December 1845) died.
10 June 1923. Switzerland and Liechtenstein formed a customs union.
1920, Switzerland joined the League of Nations, which was based at Geneva.
1919, Switzerland adopted proportional representation, to ensure political stability.
12 March 1907, Switzerland reorganised its army and made military training compulsory for all males.
20 May 1900, Voters in Switzerland overwhelmingly rejected a law providing for sickness and accident insurance. The Kranken und Unfallversicherungsgesetz (KUVG), sponsored by Ludwig Forrer and passed the Federal Assembly, but was challenged by a referendum, where more than 70% of the voters were against it. Health reform would finally pass in 1911.
13 January 1896, Emilie de Morsier, Swiss social activist, died.
1882, The Swiss National Redoubt was finally defined as an outer and inner defensive zone, the concept having been first conceived in the 1820s following a period of French occupation. The outer zone defended the Swiss Plateau; the inner zone was an Alpine refuge area. In 1929 Mussolini bullt a road to San Giacomo, from which the St Gotthard Pass and railway tunnel were within artillery range from. This signal of Italian military capability and territorial ambition spurred the Swiss to build a network of fortifications as soon as Italy entered World War Two.
11 March 1881, Henri Frederic Amiel, Swiss philosopher, died in Geneva (born in Geneva 27 September 1821).
9 October 1874, The Universal Postal Union was established, with its headquarters in Berne, Switzerland.
8 July 1910, Alexander Burgener, 65, Swiss mountaineer, died in an avalanche
13 July 1865, Edward Whymper became the first person to climb the Matterhorn.
11 August 1858, The summit of the Eiger, in the Swiss Alps, was reached for the first time, by Charles Barrington of Bray, Ireland.
27/4/1840, Edward Whymper, mountaineer who conquered the Matterhorn, was born.
1857, Prussia renounced its claim to Neuchatel.
12 September 1848, Switzerland adopted a Federal constitution.
24 November 1847, In Switzerland, end of the brief and almost bloodless Sonderbund War. Protestant Swiss Liberals attempted to impose their policies, which included a stronger central government, freedom of worship, and secularised education (entailing expulsion of the Jesuits) on all of Switzerland. This was strongly opposed by Swiss Catholics, and seven mainly Catholic cantons (Lucern, Uri, Schwyz, Unterwalden, Fribourg, Zyg and Valais) formed, in 1845, the Sonderbund (Separatist League). This move was voted down by the Reformist majority in the Sweiss Diet, who ordered the dissolution of the Sonderbund in 1847. The Sonderbund appealed, vainly, for outside help and Federal troops under General Guillaume Henri Dufour (1787-1875) moved in against the Sonderbund forces, who were greatly outnumbered. This episode led to the establishment of a strong Federal Government in Switzerland.
8/4/1839, Pierre Prevost, Swiss philosopher, born 3 March 1751, died.
19/2/1833, Elie Ducommun, Swiss journalist and pacifist was born in Geneva, Switzerland (died 7 December 1916 in Berne, Switzerland).
Switzerland during the French Napoleonic era. 1798-1803
1803, The Canton of Argau joined the Swiss Confereration.
15 October 1802, Napoleon intervened in the civil war in Switzerland between the towns and the forest cantons. He styled himself �Mediator of the Helvetic League� and imposed a settlement.
19 August 1798, France signed a formal alliance with the Helvetian Republic.
16/4/1798, Francce annexed Geneva.
29 March 1798, Swiss revolutionaries proclaimed the �Helvetian Republic� and allied to France.
5 March 1798, Bern declared war on France, fighting two separate battles this day, winning one and losing the other. Bern then surrendered to France.
24 January 1798, Napoleon invadced Switzerland. The French-dominated Lemanic Republic was set up.
8 October 1798, Felix Neff, Swiss Protestant divine, was born.
16 August 1794, Jean Aubigne, Swiss historian, was born near Geneva (died 1872).
31 March 1723, In the Swiss canton of Vaud, Jean Abraham Daniel led a rebellion against the Protestant canton of Berne. He was executed.
25 July 1712, A Swiss Bernese army won the Battle of Villmergen. This established the dominance of Protestants over Catholics in Switzerland.
24 January 1656, The Protestant cantons of Zurich and Berne were defeated by catholic forces in the First Villmergen War.
8 June 1653. A Peasant�s Revolt, the latest in a series of them, was put down in Switzerland.
21 May 1653, Bern was besieged by a 16,000 strong peasant army; revolt later suppressed at Herzogenburg.
1648, The Peace of Westphalia ended the Thirty Years War, and fully recognised Swiss independence.
19 June 1620, Catholic forces under the Spanish Viceroy of Milan defeated the Protestant forces of the Swiss Grisons League, who wetre guarding the Valtelllina Pass.
29 November 1516, King Francis I of Ftrance signed the Treaty of Freiburg, agreeing to peace with Switzerland. This Treaty remained in force until 1789.
7 November 1515, Switxerland and France signed the Treaty of Geneva. The Swiss retained� the southern canton of Ticino, and recognised French sovereignty over the Duchy of Milan.
13 September 1515, The French beat the Swiss at the Battle of Marengo (Marignano).
September 1513, At Dijon, the Swiss accepted a French indemnity and made peace, letting down their English and German allies.
1501, Schaffhausen and Basel joined the Swiss Confederation.
22 September 1499, Under the Treaty of Basel, Maximilian granted the Swiss independence. Formal independence was not achieved for another century.
22 July 1499, The Battle of Dornach. Swiss Confederation forces defeated the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian. This was the last battle between Switzerland and the Holy Roman Empire.
1481, Solothurn and Freibourg joined the Swiss Confederation.
28 December 1478, Swiss infantrymen defeated a larger Milanese force at the Battle of Giornico. Ths was essentially a border dispute between Switzerland and Milan. Although the Swiss generally were not in favour of territorial conquests into Milanese territory, the Canton of Uri did manage to capture the Milanese border town of Bellinzona in 1500.
Burgundian-Swiss War 1474-47
5 January 1477, Battle of Nancy. Swiss pikemen defeated Charles the Duke of Burgundy�s cavalry. The 43-year old Duke was killed in the battle, and his body was found later, half-eaten by wolves.
22 June 1476, The Battle of Morat. The Swiss again defeated the Burgundians.
2 March 1476, The Swiss defeated a Burgundian Army at Granson, Switzerland.
4/4/1474, The Union of Constance, a defensive alliance between Sigismund of Austria and the Swiss Cantons against the Burgundians, was agreed.
1474, Burgundian expsnsionism now led to war between Burgundy and Switzerland.
1467, First ballad about the Swiss national hero, William Tell, appeared.
1460, Switzerland conquered Thurgau from Austria.
24 August 1444, Battle of St Jakob, near Basle. Frederick III, seeking to regain Hapsburg control of Switzerland, allied with Charles VII of France who was seeking employment for troops de,mobilised after the Hunderd Years War. The French veterans, 30,00 strong, were met by some 1,500 Swiss. The Swiss force was annihilated but not before they had killed some 3,000 French. The determination of the Swiss deterred any further French attacks, who instead turned to harassing Frederick�s domains in Alsace.
1415, The Bernese captured the fortress of Aaarau from the Hapsburgs.
1403, The Appenzell War began. |The Abbey of St Gall attempted to reassert feudal control over the free town of St Gall, with its prosperous textile strade, and the town appealed to Appenzell for help. Appenzell, and another free town, Schwyz, resisted and in 1403 defeated forces sent to enforce the Abbey�s wishes. The Hapsburg Duke, Frederick of Austria, went to assist St Gall to mreassert the feudal order, amnd a further attack on St Gall and Appenzell ensued in 1405, but was also beaten back. In 1411 Appemnzell and St Gall came under the protection of the Swiss Confederation, taking them beyond any risk of feudal control.
9/4/1388, Battle of Nafaels, Swiss War of Indepoendence. Albert III of Austria marched against Glarus, a district that had joined the Swiss Confederacy but that had been regained by the Hapsburgs in 1355. The Swiss rebels, with allies from Schwyz, drove the Austrians back.
9 July 1386, The Battle of Sempach. Hapsburg Duke Leopold III of Austria, alarmed at the growth of the Swiss Confederation, marched to attack the Swiss town of Lucerne. Swiss victory ensured the continuation of the Swiss Confederation.
3 March 1353, Bern signed an alliance with the Swiss Confederation.
27 June 1352, Zug joined the Swiss Confederation.
4 June 1352, Glarus joined the Swiss Confederation.
1 May 1351, Zurich joined the Swiss Confederation.
21 June 1339, Bern had acquired a protectorate over the town of Laupen, which Burgundy now tried to reclaim, besieging it. This day a Swiss force of pikemen and archers., although outnumbered 3 to 1, repoulsed Burgundian forces and lifted the siege of Laupen, establishing |Bern as a dominant force in the region.
7 November 1332, Lucerne joined the Swiss Confederation with Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden.
19 July 1318, Duke Leopold of Austria made peace with the Swiss Forest Cantons.
15 November 1315. A small army of Swiss foot soldiers routed a Hapsburg army sent to bring the valleys of central Switzerland under Hapsburg rule at the Battle of Morgarten. The Hapsburgs had for long had manorial rights in these valleys but not political control. The Swiss had begun to assert their political independence, fortifying the entrances of the valleys. This conflict was precipitated by a dispute over grazing rights; the men of Schwyz attacked an abbey and took some of the monks hostage.
17 March 1315, Ludwig of Bavaria recognised the Swiss Confederation.
Founding of Switzerland
1 August 1291, According to tradition, the Swiss Confederation was formed by Uri, Schwyz, and Unterwalden, the "three forest cantons", at R �tli by the Federal Charter. The Alliance was initially for mutual defence and they did not claim indpendence from Austria. See 1315. The name �Switzerland� derives from Schwyz.
22 December 1240, The Swiss cantons of Schwyz, Uri and Unterwalden came under the rule of Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor.
534, Geneva, previously held by Burgundy, passed to the Franks.
See Roman Empire for Roman conquest of Switzerland
6,000 BCE, Dogs were domesticated in the Swiss Lakes region (see food), and oxen were being used for ploughing.
Appendix 1 � Leichtenstein
1990, Leichenstein joined the United Nations.
1938, Prince Franz Josef II maintained neutrality during World War Two.
10 June 1923. Switzerland and Liechtenstein formed a customs union.
1868, Leichtenstein abolished its standing army.
1852, Leichtenstein formed a customs union with Austria, adoipting its currency. This union lasted until the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918.
23 January 1719, The Principality of Liechtenstein was constituted.
1712, Leichtenstein was enlarged by the purchase of Vaduz by Prince Johann Adam Andreas von Leichtenstein.
1416, The last Montfort Count bequeathed Vaduz to Baron von Brandis of Emmental, who in 1419 also gained possession of Schellenberg, north of Vaduz.
1342, Graf Hartmann von Montfort gained possession of the Castle of Vaduz. In 1396 Vaduz was confirmed as a fief of the Holy Roman Empire.