The first fort located on top of this rocky promontory at the southern mouth of St. John’s Harbour was built in the 1650s. The British defense was attacked several times during the 17th century and captured by the French in 1666. The current fortress on Goat Hill was constructed in 1779. Fort Barrington was named after Samuel Barrington. He was a distinguished British rear admiral with the Royal Navy during the latter part of the 18th century. The former lookout station in Fort Barrington National Park is largely in ruins.