When Fort Montagu was built during the mid-18th century, it was equipped with 23 cannons to ward off attacks by the Spaniards. Yet it was the Americans who attacked it first in 1776 during the Battle of Nassau. Their mission was to seize gunpowder for use against the British during the Revolutionary War. After firing three warning shots towards the advancing fleet, the soldiers abandoned the fort before the amphibious troops landed on shore. The Americans helped themselves to the town’s gunpowder, weapons and alcohol.