Rodger at Fort Rodney
Rodger at Fort Rodney.
Fort Rodney, 1778
Saint Lucia and the Pitons lie to the south-east, and on a clear day, Martinique can be seen to the north.
Pigeon Island, only some 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of the French base at Fort Royal, Martinique, had long been recognized by the British Admiral Rodney as an important observation and defensive site. In 1780 he wrote “… this is the post the Governor of Martinique had set his eye on and if possessed by the enemy would deprive us of the best anchorage place in these islands and from which Martinique is always attackable…”
Fort Rodney was built in 1778 with an armament of three 24-pounders and two eleven and a half-inch mortars. The cannons sat on timbers on the cobblestone platform, and the platform also served as a water catchment as you can see by the little drain around the walls that runs into the well. Water was used on the gun platform to swab the hot cannons and to remove gunpowder that did not ignite. For drinking, the water was filtered through a three-gallon limestone filter.
Next to the well you can see the powder magazine, a cool underground chamber where the gunpowder was kept.*
Unknown author. 1975. "Fort Rodney, 1778" Saint Lucia National Trust. HISTORIC SIGN 2018-03-11.