Francois Wittert, vice-admiral of the VOC, built this a fort on the northeast coast of Moti Island in 1609, on request of the Ternate people. Captain Adriaan Clemensz. Stok became the first commandant of fort Nassau. In1610 captain Apollonius Schot was in charge of the garrison of 80 soldiers. In the village near the fort lived about 2000 people. Two years later the garrison was reduced to 40 soldiers.
The fort with three bastions was made of coral stone and stone. It had 10 cannon, with enough cannonballs and 14 half barrels of gunpowder. In 1616 captain Hendrick Mayer of Maastricht became commander of the fort.
In 1625 the governor of the Moluccas Jacques Lefebvre ordered Geen Huigen Schaepenham to demolish fort Nassau. The Spanish who then came to the island felt it unnecessary to reuse the fort.
At present the fort has mostly collapsed due to sea water abrasion and also due to local peoples using its stones as building materials. Some of the ruins are in the sea and some are scattered along the coast.