Charlestown is the capital of the Republic of St. Kitts and Nevis belonging Caribbean island of Nevis and has about 1700 inhabitants. The place was built on the protected leeward side of the island, between Fort Charles and Fort Black Rocks. Most of the original buildings were destroyed over the years by earthquakes, favored by the widespread practice of timber on stony ground. Charlestown is the birthplace of Alexander Hamilton. During the 17th century, many Sephardic Jews came to Nevis after they had been expelled from Brazil.