Twenty 'Firsts' of Islam
1 - Hashim, the great-grandfather of the Prophet (peace be upon him), was the first to institute the two caravan journeys of Quraysh, summer and winter, and the first to provide tharid (meat broth) to the pilgrims in Makkah.
2 - Khadijah bint Khuwaylid, the wife of the Prophet, was the first to accept Islam.
3 - The first male who bore witness that Allah was One, and that Muhammad was His Messenger, was Ali bin Abi Talib.
4 - The first meeting place in Islam was the house of Arqam bin Abu al-Arqam in Makkah.
5 - The family of Yasir was the first "whole family" to accept Islam (outside the family of the Prophet himself). Yasir, his wife, Sumayya, and their son, 'Ammar; all three accepted Islam as soon as they heard the call of the Messenger of Allah. Some people have claimed that it was Abu Bakr who was the head of the first "whole family" which accepted Islam. This claim lacks evidence. Abu Bakr's son, Abdur Rahman, was an idolater, and he fought against the Muslims in the battle of Badr. Abu Bakr's father, Abu Qahafa, was also an idolater who became a Muslim only after the conquest of Makkah in 630.
6 - The pagans in Makkah tortured Yasir and his wife, Sumayya, and their son, 'Ammar, day after day, for accepting Islam. All three of them were the first Muslims whom the Prophet gave the tidings that they would enter Paradise.
7 - Sumayya, the wife of Yasir, was the first martyr in Islam. Her husband, Yasir, was the second martyr. Both of them were tortured to death by the disbelievers. Their son, 'Ammar, was also destined to win the prize of martyrdom, though he did so in the battle of Siffin in 657 H.They became, in this manner, a family of martyrs in Islam - a distinction which no one else has ever shared with them.
8 - The first man to read Qur'an out aloud at the Ka'bah was 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud.
9 - The first man to be killed in the precincts of the Ka'bah was al-Harith bin Abu Hala, the nephew and adopted son of Khadijah. When the Abu Hala proclaimed his Islam at the Ka'bah before an assembly of the disbelievers, they subjected him to physical violence. al-Harith entered the fray to defend him. They stabbed him repeatedly, and he fell dead on the ground.
10 - 'Ammar ibn Yasir was the first man in Islam to build a mosque. He built his mosque in Makkah itself.
11 - Mus'ab bin 'Umayr was the first official in Islam. In 621, a group of the citizens of Madinah came to Makkah. They met the Prophet at 'Aqabah, accepted Islam, and requested him to send with them to Madinah a teacher of Islam. The Prophet sent Mus'ab bin 'Umayr, a cousin of his father, with them. This was the first time an official of any type was chosen in Islam.
12 - 'Abdullah bin Abd al-As'ad, was the first man to migrate from Makkah to Madinah in 622.
13 - Bilal was the first mu'adhin of Islam, and he was the first to be in charge of the Bayt ul-Mal (state treasury)of Madinah. This made him the first treasurer of the Muslims. He made allocations of all funds. He was also responsible for distributing funds to the widows, orphans, the wayfarers and other poor people who had no means of supporting themselves.
14 - Hamzah bin 'Abd al-Muttallib was the first military commander in Islam. The Messenger of Allah had sent him at the head of 30 Muhajirin to intercept a caravan of the Quraysh, led by Abu Jahl. But there was no action, and the expedition returned to Madinah.
15 - The first governor of Madinah was Sa'd bin 'Ubadah al-Ansari. In the second year of Hijrah, the Prophet personally led an expedition to Waddan. During his absence, Sa'd was placed as the temporary ruler of Madinah.
16 - The first military commander whose men were involved in bloodshed, was 'Abdullah bin Jahsh, a cousin of the Prophet. He led an expedition of seven men to Nakhlah.
17 - The battle of Badr, fought in 624, was the first encounter on the battlefield between Islam and disbelief. Walid bin Utbah, a military hero of the disbelievers, challenged the heroes of Islam to a duel. His challenge was taken up by 'Ali bin Abi Talib. 'Ali killed Walid bin 'Utbah after only a few minutes of dueling.
18 - 'Ubaydah bin al-Harith was the first Muslim to be killed in battle. He was a cousin of the Prophet, and he was the first martyr of the Battle of Badr.
19 - Zayd bin Harithah was the first Muslim to be killed on foreign soil. In September, 629, the Prophet sent him as the general of the army which was to fight the Romans in Syria. The two armies met in the battle of Mu'tah, and Zayd was killed in it.
20 - 'Akib bin 'Usayd was the first governor of Makkah. It was the first permanent civil appointment made in Islam. 'Akib took charge of his duties as governor of Makkah in January, 630.
And Allah Knows best.
[Taken from the 'Sirah' of Ibn Ishaq]