1785 was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar).
The term thoroughbred was first used in the United States in an advertisement in a Kentucky gazette to describe a New Jersey stallion called Pilgarlick .
January 18 - Third Pacific expedition of Capt. James Cook, with ships HMS Resolution and HMS Discovery, first view O'ahu then Kaua'i in the Hawaiian Islands, which he names the " Sandwich Islands."
February 5 - South Carolina becomes the first state to ratify the Articles of Confederation.
February 6 - American Revolutionary War: In Paris the Treaty of Alliance and the Treaty of Amity and Commerce are signed by the United States and France signaling official recognition of the new republic.
February 23 - American Revolutionary War: Baron von Steuben arrives at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania to help to train the Continental Army.
July 10 - American Revolutionary War: Louis XVI of France declares war on the Kingdom of Great Britain.
July 27 - American Revolution: First Battle of Ushant - British and French fleets fight to a standoff.
August 26 - Triglav, at 2,864 metres above sea level the highest peak of Slovenia, was ascended for the first time by four brave men : Luka Korošec , Matevž Kos , Štefan Rožič and Lovrenc Willomitzer on Sigismund Zois 's initiative.
September - The Massachusetts Banishment Act, providing punishment for Loyalists, is passed.
November 26 - In the Hawaiian Islands, Captain James Cook becomes the first European to discover Maui.
France introduced the first state-controlled brothel.
The first settlement was made in the area of what is now Louisville, Kentucky by 13 families under Col. George Rogers Clark.
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