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Delfshaven, fort

The small island of Kisar lies north of East-Timor. It is part of an island group which was known to the Dutch as the Southwest Islands. In 1668 the VOC settled on Kisar which until then had stood under Portuguese control. Initially the Dutch took over the old Portuguese fort, which was renamed Delfshaven. In line with the Portuguese building tradition, this stronghold was built linand, on a hill. The Dutch, on the other hand, preferred to have their defences right at the waterline and started building a new fort on the beach. Once fort Vollenhoven was completed the old fort in Kota Lama was abandoned. From the new position the bay and the gorge that providing access to the inland could be controlled. In 1819 the island lost its military function. In de meantime a mixed population had evolved, influenced by both the Portuguese and the Dutch. Until this day there are families on Kiser with Dutch family names. The European influence can also still be seen in the islands buildings. In 1848 fort Vollenhoven was describes as a square structure with three meter high and one meter thick walls made out of rocks, with bastions on two of its opposite corners and a gate on the east side. Fort Delfshaven was in a worse state. In the meantime things seem to have changes and less is left of fort Vollenhoven, at hen of fort Delfshaven. From the later some wall fragments of the structure that once measures 21x28 meters still stand in Kota Lama.

build start


build end





coral stone


historical name

Delfshaven, fort

Delftshaven, fort

Delft, fort (Makisser)

Vollenhoven, fort



location Kisar


  • anoniem/anonymous, Landmonsterrollen (1691-1790)
  • Pusat Dokumentasi Arsitektur, Inventory and identification of forts in Indonesia (Pusat Dokumentasi Arsitektur, Jakarta, 2010), 183