A strategic city
From its founding in 1749 to the late 19th century, Halifax was one of four principal overseas naval stations in the British Empire. Military authorities built a system of coastal fortifications to defend the harbour and its approaches. The mighty Citadel acted as a command post and warded off land-based attacks.
The present-day Citadel was completed in 1856 and is the fourth in a series of forts to occupy the hill overlooking the city.
The mid-Victorian era
At the height of its influence in the mid-Victorian era, the Citadel was the headquarters of one of the Halifax Garrison's two infantry regiments. British units were generally posted to Halifax for a two-year period. Two of these units were the 78th Highland Regiment of Foot and the 3rd Brigade, Royal Artillery.