Long before Atlantic City was founded, the island where it would be developed, thick with woods and lined with dunes, was the summer home of the Lenni Lenape Indians, an Algonquian-speaking people. These original summer residents named the island Absegami, meaning "little water", a term for the bay denoting that the opposite shore was in sight. Over time the name was transformed into the present-day Absecon Island. Early colonial settlers in South Jersey largely ignored the island because it could only be reached by boat.
While the exact date of the first permanent settlement has never been determined, it is generally agreed that Jeremiah Leeds was the first to build and occupy a year-round residence on the island, building his home in 1783.
The first boardwalk was 1 mile long, 8 feet wide, and stood 1 foot above the sand. Designed to prevent sand from being carried into the hotel lobbies by the strollers’ long dresses and shoes, later boardwalks were more permanent. It later became an official Atlantic City street, Boardwalk.
Prohibition begins in the United States. While many of Atlantic City's establishments ignored the law and continued to serve alcohol to the city's visitors, apothecaries provided alcohol for medicinal purposes.
Democratic National Convention is held in Convention Hall. The Mississippi Democratic Freedom Party and Fannie Lou Hamer petition for equal access for all races to participate as delegates at the convention.