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Some choices from a timeline of Singapore history:

1613 Portuguese burn down a trading outpost at the mouth of Singapore River. Wiki doesn't mention anything for the 1700s.
1819 Stamford Raffles arrives in Singapore with William Farquhar to establish a trading post for the British East India Company.
1826 Singapore becomes part of the British colony of Straits Settlements under the rule of the East India Company, together with Malacca and Penang.
1830 Singapore comes under the Presidency of Bengal in India.
1869 The Suez Canal opens, and Singapore enjoys the increase in trade.
1915 The Singapore Mutiny occurred as British Muslim Indian sepoys rose up against the British.
1942 The British surrenders and the Japanese Occupation of Singapore starts. Singapore is renamed Syonan (Light of the South).
1945 The British return to Singapore after the end of World War II and begin a military administration of the Straits Settlements.
1959 People's Action Party (PAP) wins the General Election and Lee Kuan Yew becomes the first Prime Minister.
1963 The Malaysia Agreement is signed between leaders of Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak (Singapore joining with Malaysia).
1965 The Malaysian Parliament votes to expel Singapore from the Federation; Singapore becomes independent after separating from Malaysia. Curious?!
1979 Singapore becomes the world's second busiest port in terms of shipping tonnage.
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