On one side of La Savane Park, at the corner of the streets Rúe de la Liberté and Victor Sévère is, in my opinion, is the loveliest structures in Fort de France: The Schœlcher Library, declared a Historical Monument of Martinique. The structure was designed by Henry Picq (designer of the Cathedral of St. Louis). It was constructed for the Universal Exhibition in Paris in the year1889, and then transferred by boat to Fort de France. It is a steel building with a huge glass dome, striking colors and it has a lovely facade which has the names of 52 writers, philosophers and politicians of the 18th and 19th centuries. Today it is home to the public library, with over 130,000 volumes, mostly donated by the abolitionist Victor Schoelcher. admission is free of charge. Hours of operation: Monday 13h-17h30, Tuesday to Thursday 8h30-17h30, Saturday 8h30-17h, Saturday 8:30-12pm. In front of the building is the Préfecture, or Government House.
When you visit the [poi = 120169] Depaz Distillery [/ poi], you can of course tour the factory, but you can also visit the Depaz House, a stately, colonial mansion where the Depaz family (owners of this rum empire) once lived. It is a huge house-museum spread out over two floors and surrounded by beautiful gardens and fountains. The entry fee is 3$. Inside, you can see different rooms of the house, period furniture, and objects from the past.
Situated very close to the Cathedral, about halfway talong Schoelcher stret, you can see a landscaped plaza that is called Self Defense Square because it is where the old courthouse is located. It was constructed during the early 20th Century and has been restored to house the Cultural Centre "Camille Darsières". The building is symmetrical and linear. The different units are structured around a central courtyard (now occupied by classrooms where music classes are taught). In the square in front of the main facade there are gardens, in the center stands the Monument to Schoelcher.