Where the African slaves once mixed the gunpowder needed to protect Fort
Fort has always been a military stronghold, in the Dutch days there were more than 1,000 soldiers stationed here; ironically many of them German, French and Swiss!They lived in barracks at the top of Church Street. The army camp you see today was where the Africans slaves lived in the Dutch days. They also had had their church and the graveyard here. In the British days, for over 75 years it was used by the magistrate, later it became the British Master attendant’s bungalow and since 1970 the Sri Lankan army camp.
To the back of the camp is the gun powder mill where the Africans had to grind and mix gunpowder (a mix of salt peter, charcoal and sulphur). It was then stored in the gun powder storage in Star bastion. This vaulted roof mill is now the home of the Galle Heritage Foundation, an agency working tirelessly for the preservation of Fort’s unique heritage since its listing as a UNESCO site.
Visit the gunpowder storage?
Soon you can! Galle Heritage Foundation is currently transforming the gun powder storages in Star and Utrecht bastion into visitor galleries.