The Dutch on the Caribbean island of St. Eustacia were the first to recognized the ships of the newly independent United States by saluting them when they sailed by the cannons of Fort Orange.
Dutch magistrates on the important
trading island of St. Eustacia, in the Caribbean, are the first to
recognize the new American republic with a salute from cannons at
Fort Orange. Incensed by this display of loyalty to the
rebellious colonists, English naval ships immediately attacked the
island and burned the docks and wharves.
Today, St Eustacia is a quiet little
island in the windward chain with a historic waterfront and the
famous Dutch fort towering over the islands rocky ramparts.
Between 1600 and 1850, ownership of the island would change
no fewer than 17 times. This now forgotten center of commerce
was the hub of trade in sugar and slaves and riches that were
fought over by kings and queens, pirates and buccaneers.