Hand-painted list showing Semaphore signals and Telescope

Right beside the door of the front gallery of Landhuis Rooi Catootje hangs a chart showing the semaphore signals used at Fort Nassau until 1918. This unique hand-painted list dates from around 1900 and was made especially for Manuel (Manchi) Levy Maduro. In the 1830s, an optical telegraph system was installed to send messages from the eastern part of Curaçao to Fort Nassau. Using collapsible disks, a message would then be displayed telling observers about the number and type of vessels sailing towards the port of Willemstad, and the colors of the flag they were carrying. In 1918, Fort Nassau became a signal tower for shipping.The telescope was not only used to observe the signals from Fort Nassau, but also to keep an eye on what was happening on the plantation from the back porch of the house and to observe what was going on at nearby plantations.