Singapore Island became part of the Javanese Majapahit Empire in the 14th century. The Portuguese took control of the area in the 16th century, followed by the Dutch a hundred years later. In 1819 Sir Tomas Stamford Rafes, the British East India Administrator, established a trading settlement. The lease to the British East India Company by the Sultan of Johore was followed by the treaty of 2 Aug. 1824 ceding the entire island in perpetuity to the company. In 1826 Penang, Melaka and Singapore were combined as the Straits Settlements. With the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 and the advent of the steamship, an era of prosperity began for Singapore. Growth continued with the export of tin and rubber from the Malay peninsula.
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