Castle Black is one of the nineteen Night's Watch military fortifications established along the Wall, one of the three of these fortifications that is still operational by 280 AC, and the headquarters of the Night's Watch. The castle is situated near the middle of the Wall, between Queensgate to the west, and Oakenshield to the east, and at the northern end of the kingsroad. The village of Mole's Town is located half a league south to the castle. At its peak, Castle Black was manned by five thousand sworn brothers of the Night's Watch. As of 298 AC, it currently holds about six hundred.