Today is the 209th day of 2011. There are 157 days left in the year.
1914: World War I begins when Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia.
1742: Peace of Berlin between Austria and Prussia ends first Silesian War. Silesia is a historical region that is now southwestern Poland.
1821: Peru's independence from Spain is formally declared.
1868: Third Maori War breaks out in New Zealand. The Maori, Polynesian people, owned land on the North Island, but an increase in European immigrants led to demands for land purchases by the government.
1937: Japanese seize Beijing in China and subsequently occupy it until 1945.
1945: US Army bomber crashes into Empire State Building in New York City, killing 13 people.
1959: Preparing for statehood, Hawaiians vote to send the first Chinese-American, Hiram L Fong, to the US Senate and the first Japanese-American, Daniel K Inouye, to the House of Representatives.
1990: Alberto Fujimori takes over as Peru's president.
2000: Peruvians furious with the inauguration of Alberto Fujimori protest in the streets of Lima, setting government buildings ablaze and throwing rocks. At least five die and dozens are injured.
2001: Alejandro Toledo of the centrist Peru Possible Party is sworn in as president of Peru.
2002: US cyclist Lance Armstrong wins the 89th Tour de France, the most prestigious race in cycling, for the fourth year in a row. Only four other riders had won the Tour de France more times than Armstrong.
2005:The Irish Republican Army announces it is renouncing violence as a political weapon and pledges to resume disarmament — a potential breakthrough after years of deadlock.
2007: The Liberian government lifts a self-imposed moratorium on the mining, sale and export of diamonds that had been in place for six years, since the stones came under UN sanctions when ex-President Charles Taylor's government was accused of using revenues to fuel war in neighbouring Sierra Leone.
Ibn al-'Arabi, Arab theologist (1165-1240); Jacopo Sannazzaro, Italian poet, (1456-1530), Judith Leyster, Dutch painter (1609-1660), Beatrix Potter, British author and illustrator (1866-1943); Marcel Duchamp, French-born American painter (1887-1968); Jacques Piccard, French deep sea explorer (1922-2008); Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, former U.S. first lady (1929-1994); Jacques d'Amboise, US ballet dancer (1934-); Jim Davis, Garfield US cartoonist (1945-).