Electoral College deadlock in 1824 presidential election throws race into House of Representatives for the second time in US history. House elects John Quincy Adams President over Andrew Jackson (the leader in both electoral and popular votes).
First successful steam locomotive railroad opens in Britain. The 30-mile line between Darlington and Stockton in northern England is used mainly to ship coal (initially only horse-drawn cars carry passengers). Shipping costs between Darlington and Stockton drop by 75%. Robert Stephenson's engine is named Locomotion Number 1 (not Rocket which came several years later).
363-mile Erie Canal completed in New York State, linking Hudson River (and NYC) with Lake Erie. Canal will be a major factor in the settlement of the Old Northwest.
Decembrist (Masonic) Revolt in Russia. Fails.
Comanches raid Chihuahua, Mexico.
January 31: In England 15 year old James Bowker was sentenced being transported for seven years for stealing one pound of butter.