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Eener Schans/Zwartendijksterschans Star Fort


The Zwartendijksterschans near the village of Een-West in Drenthe is one of the forts built during the Eighty Years’ War. As Stadtholder of Friesland, William Louis of Nassau-Dillenburg ordered the building of the fort to defend against the Spanish.

The Zwartendijksterschans star fort is one of the forts on the Frisian Water Line. Like many other fortifications, its task was to prevent the Spanish from invading during the Eighty Years’ War. Zwartendijk is the old name of the road near the fort. During the era of the Frisian Water Line, the Zwartendijksterschans star fort controlled passage through the peatland in Drenthe between Groningen and Friesland.

After the Eighty Years’ War the fort fell into disrepair. In 1673, the fort was taken back into use to fend off the siege led the Prince-Bishop of Münster, Christoph Bernhard Von Galen. His strategy was to attack Groningen with explosives and stone bombs. This earned him the nickname ‘Bombing Bernhard’. When he failed to invade Groningen, he decided to reroute the attack through Friesland. So the fortifications of the Frisian Water Line including the Zwartendijksterschans star fort were quickly repaired.

The Zwartendijksterschans star fort was restored in 1988. The fort was previously owned by Stichting Oud-Drenthe, a foundation set up to preserve historical and cultural heritage. In August 2009, the ownership of the fort was transferred to Stichting Het Drentse Landschap, the successor of the Stichting Oud-Drenthe foundation. 

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