Singapore's History
Singapore :: History

ca 1299 The legendary prince Sang Nila Utama landed on Temasek (former name of Singapore) and renamed it Singapura.
1819 Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles arrived in Temasek and gained possession of a fishing village for Britain through an agreement with Sultan Hussein of Johor and the Temenggong.
1824 All of Singapore was transferred to the British East India Company in return for increased cash payments and pensions.
1826 Incorporated into the colony of the Straits Settlements together with Penang and Malacca
1869 Trade flourished with the opening of the Suez Canal and began to attract immigrants from the region.
1918 Singapore became main British naval base in East Asia and Britain undertook extensive military construction.
1923 Linked to Malaya by a causeway
1939-1945 Captured and occupied by the Japanese who renamed it Syonan (Light of the South).

1946 Britain dissolved the Straits Settlements and made Singapore a separate crown colony.
1948 Singapore's first election of six members to the Legislative Council by popular vote
1950 Riots sparked by the custody battle of Maria Hertogh (age 13) between her adoptive Malay family and her Eurasian parents - at least 18 people killed and 173 people injured
1955 David Saul Marshall became the Chief Minister of Singapore after the first Legislative Assembly election.
1956 Lim Yew Hock, Marshall's deputy and minister for Labor became the Chief Minister.
1959 Singapore gained internal self-government but Britain remained responsible for its defense and foreign affairs.

Lee Kuan Yew, the People Action Party's (PAP) leader, became Singapore's first prime minister.
1960 The Housing and Development Board (HDB) was set up to develop public housing.
1961 The pro-communist members of PAP formed a new political party, the Barisan Sosialis.
1963 Singapore joined the Federation of Malaysia.
1964 Ethnic riots between Malays and Chinese on Prophet Mohammad's Birthday at the Padang - 22 people died and 454 injured
1965 Withdrew from Malaysia at Malaysia's invitation and became a sovereign state

Inche Yusof bin Ishak, head of state since 1959, became the first president ... a ceremonial office, elected by Parliament.

1967 The British Government decided to withdraw its armed forces from Singapore by the end of 1971. Compulsory national service was introduced.

ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) established by the governments of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
1968 The Jurong Town Corporation (JTC) and the Development Bank of Singapore (DBS) were set up.
1970 The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) was established to formulate and implement Singapore's monetary policies.
1971 In January, Benjamin Henry Sheares became president.

In October, British military presence in Singapore came to an end.

The Five Power Defence Agreement (FPDA), which groups Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and Britain, was set up for defence collaboration.
1981 C.V. Devan Nair was elected president.

In a by-election. J.B. Jeyaratnam of the Workers' Party won the first seat to be held by the opposition.
1984 The opposition won 2 of 79 seats in general election -- PAP's first loss of a seat in a general election since 1964.
1985 Devan Nair resigned the presidency and was replaced by Wee Kim Wee.

1990 Lee Kuan Yew resigned as prime minister and designated Goh Chok Tong as his successor. Lee remained head of the People's Action Party and became a senior minister in Goh's Cabinet.
1992 Goh Chok Tong was elected head of the People's Action Party.
1993 Ong Teng Cheong of the People's Action Party became the country's first directly elected president.
1994 Caning of American teenager Michael Fay for vandalising cars grabbed world headlines.
1995 Nick Leeson's dealings on Singapore stock exchange led to collapse of Britain's oldest merchant bank, Barings. He was convicted and sentenced to six and a half years in jail.
1997 Silkair Flight 185 crashed into Musi River near Palembang, Sumatra, with the loss of all 104 passengers and crew.
1998 Singapore slipped into recession for the first time in 13 years during Asian financial crisis.
1999 S R Nathan became president without election after he was declared only candidate eligible to run.
2000 Singapore Airlines Flight 006 crashed while taking off at Taipei airport, killing 81 passengers and crew.
2003 Singapore became first Asian nation to sign free-trade agrement with US.
2004 Lee Hsien Loong was sworn in as prime minister.
2005 In April, the government approved a plan to legalise casino gambling - the construction of two multi-billion dollar casino resorts.

In September, President S R Nathan began a second, six-year term after winning elections from which his rivals were disqualified.

In December, an Australian man found guilty of drug smuggling was executed, despite high-level appeals for clemency.
2008 On May 23, the International Court of Justice awarded Pedra Branca's sovereignty to Singapore in its 28-year territorial dispute with Malaysia. Pedra Branca, a small island half the size of a football field, is located some 24 nautical miles to the east of Singapore. It houses the Horsburgh Lighthouse.