Fort Frederik! On the west side of the island lies Fort Frederik, which was built in the 18th century out of necessity by the Danish government to protect St. Croix against invasion of European powers, smugglers and pirates! It gained its status as a National Landmark because of the role it played in two events that eventually led to the dissolution of slavery in the Virgin Islands in 1848. In 1848, Emancipation Revolt ended slavery in the Danish West Indies, but inaugurated a 30-year period of serfdom based on contract labor that ensured continuing control by plantation owners. Then in 1878, escalating tensions erupted into the Labor Riot and Fireburn, which ended the contract labor system. The fort also features a rotating art exhibit. Fort Frederik is open Monday-Friday, 8:30 am to 4:00 pm and Saturday 1:00pm to 4:00 pm.