Today is Wednesday, Jan. 11, the 11th day of 2012. There are 355 days left in the year.
On Jan. 11, 1942, Japan declared war against the Netherlands, the same day that Imperial Japanese forces invaded the Dutch East Indies.
On this date:
In 1759, the first American life insurance corporation, for “poor and distressed” Presbyterian ministers and their widows and children, was chartered in Philadelphia.
In 1805, the Michigan Territory was created by an act of Congress.
In 1861, Alabama became the fourth state to withdraw from the Union.
In 1908, President Theodore Roosevelt proclaimed the Grand Canyon National Monument (it became a national park in 1919).
In 1913, the first sedan-type automobile, a Hudson, went on display at the 13th National Automobile Show in New York.
In 1927, the creation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was proposed during a dinner of Hollywood luminaries at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles.
In 1935, aviator Amelia Earhart began an 18-hour trip from Honolulu to Oakland, Calif., that made her the first woman to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean.
In 1943, the United States and Britain signed treaties relinquishing extraterritorial rights in China.
In 1964, U.S. Surgeon General Luther Terry issued the first government report that said smoking may be hazardous to one’s health.
In 1972, East Pakistan changed its name to Bangladesh.
In 1977, France set off an international uproar by releasing Abu Daoud, a PLO official behind the massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
In 1995, 52 people were killed when a Colombian airliner crashed as it was preparing to land near the Caribbean resort of Cartagena — however, a 9-year-old girl, Erika Delgado, survived.
Ten years ago: The first planeload of al-Qaida prisoners from Afghanistan arrived at a U.S. military detention camp in Guantanamo, Cuba. Ford Motor Co. announced it was eliminating 35,000 jobs, closing five plants and dropping four models. The Argentine peso floated freely for the first time after 11 years of being tied to the U.S. dollar.
Five years ago: President George W. Bush’s plan to send more troops to Iraq ran into a wall of criticism on Capitol Hill from both Democrats and Republicans. Democrats selected Denver as the site of their 2008 presidential convention. English soccer star David Beckham announced a five-year deal to play for the Los Angeles Galaxy.
One year ago: Several hundred mourners remembered the victims of the Arizona shooting rampage during a public Mass at St. Odilia Catholic Church in Tucson. David Nelson, 74, who starred on his parents’ popular TV show “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet,” died in Los Angeles.