Work in Progress
This article is a work in progress.
|Notable Individuals:||Jade, Jialong Zhou|
|Factions:||Chinatown militias, New Disciples, Oriental Caravan Company|
|Notable events:||Great War, Treaty of Capitol Hill,|
Chinatown, known before the war as the Chinatown-International District, is a community in Seattle that has stubbornly hung on to its cultural and ethnic heritage for the last two centuries. Chinatown is also an important place for caravans in Seattle and the operating center of the Oriental Caravan Company.
The history of Seattle's Chinatown begins to the late 19th century with the arrival of Chinese immigrants in the Pacific Northwest. Seattle's early Chinese population was victimized frequently but eventually stabilized into a real community with the run of the century. From there, the community prospered and progressively gained other ethnic groups nearby, such as Japanese and Filipinos. This community retained its integrity through the 20th century, though the internment of Japanese-American civilians during WWII shook it up a bit resulting in many Japanese businesses and historic buildings closing. The Chinatown-International District was officially created in 1999.
The 21st century proved to be the biggest challenge to Seattle's Chinatown, especially with flared relations with China as the Resource Wars began. The United States's unwillingness to export oil to China leading to a breakdown in talks between the two countries. This crisis led to the Sino-American War, which had an obvious negative effect on the Chinatown in Seattle. While numerous Chinese-Americans were removed from Chinatown over years, new immigrants came to replace them, displaced from areas affected in the Sino-American War from places like Korea, Taiwan, and Japan. These new immigrants tended to be more patriotic while older residents were more skeptical of the U.S. government.
As the 2070s winded down, conditions within Chinatown also deteriorated. Relations between the area's Asian and non-Asian residents were understandably strained as the Sino-American War wore on. The U.S. government had corralled much of the local Chinese-American population into Seattle’s Chinatown, which only went to further tensions. Two-thirds of Chinatown’s population was Asian by late 2077, twice what it had been the year before. Riots began breaking out in September 2077 and continued until the bombs dropped.
The Great War came as little surprise to many in Chinatown. The community had collectively prepared for the nuclear war and survived in various places that served as fallout shelters. The residents of Chinatown however were stricken with another altercation soon after bombs dropped: Chinese Communist infiltrators emerged from the ranks of their friends and family to take control armed with weapons such as Chinese assault rifles and Chinese pistols. Some Chinatown residents went along with the infiltrators while the overwhelming majority revolted against the communists, especially the non-Chinese people within the community who feared being 'purged'. It was a brief bloody struggle, and the Asian Americans triumphed over the Chinese communist infiltrators. Only a couple of other people in Seattle knew of this, but even to them it mattered relatively little. The residents of Chinatown did benefit somewhat in that they could loot the Chinese weapons and use them in future generations. That helped Chinatown to survive for the next couple of months.
The arrival of Edgar Brent in Seattle came in early 2078, and he brought some changes to Chinatown. Colonel Edgar divided the remaining survivor settlements in Seattle into their own little districts, further stratifying the divide between Chinatown and other places in the area. Chinatown did benefit some from the extra protection and supplies such as RadAway. There was tension between the U.S. Army soldiers in Seattle and Chinatown, but there was no violence. That was even with Colonel Edgar's contact with the New Order. The trouble only really came with the arrival of Skull-Taker about a year later.
Skull-Taker was created because of the actions of the New Order in restricting traffic into Seattle, and the cannibal warlord spared no one in the ruined city. He first smashed through the barricades that protected Seattle and burned dozens of settlements, including Chinatown. Luckily, many people in Chinatown managed to survive the onslaught of cannibals in the winter of 2079. One unlikely hero who emerged at this time was Frank Zhang, a former dockworker who took the initiative to fight the cannibals. Zhang was eventually killed in early 2080, his actions lived on in the memories of the residents of Chinatown as a hero of the community. People like Frank Zhang helped Chinatown survive the dark night Skull-Taker brought.
The conclusion of Skull-Taker's reign in Seattle was seen for Chinatown in the Battle of the Chinatown Gate, where the locals cleared out what was left of the cannibals around. The cannibals had been hanging around Chinatown looking for easy prey and vandalizing the Chinatown Gate. Enraged by the cannibals' predation and disrespect, the residents of Chinatown rose up and threw the last of the killers out. The community triumphing over the cannibals on January 20, 2080, is now celebrated every years as Victory Day.
Chinatown's government is minimal at best, one of the town's qualities taken more from America and less from their ancestral homelands in Asia. The economy allows for free trade and very little is regulated, even weapons and chems. The community is headed by a council that is made up of the most prominent people with no mayor in charge (though the overall leader of the Chinatown militias have somewhat acted in that role on occasion).
The only important function of Chiantown’s government besides protection is enforcing the ban on the settlement of outsiders within their community. This is down through various “culture laws” outlawing outsiders owning property within Chinatown and actively encouraging ostracization of those who mix with outsiders. The Chinatown militias are used to enforce these culture laws, often with extreme brutality.
The economy of Chinatown is nowadays mostly fueled by caravans, though the community has proved itself to be somewhat self-sufficient. At first, Chinatown was mostly made up scavengers who raked the ruins of Seattle and were very vulnerable to attacks from the New Order. As Chinatown’s residents circled the wagons, established the Chinatown militias, and became even more insular, the town relies more on small industries such as limited manufacturing and crafts. That was until the caravans started coming through in the 2200s. It turned out there was quite a market for goods from Chinatown in other parts of Cascadia and even NCR, benefiting the community greatly. This however led to a tightening of culture laws as the residents of Chinatown began to feel threatened by the influx of caravaners. Today, caravans remain a major source of revenue in Chinatown with the town now even having its own caravan, the Oriental Caravan Company.
Culture is very important to the people of Chinatown for obvious reasons. The diverse but also insular culture of Chinatown has kept the community safe over the last two centuries. Chinatown’s residents are mainly of Chinese and Japanese origins, though Filipinos, Koreans, and Vietnamese are also present. These different communities jealously hold onto what they see as “their” cultures, which is in actuality a mix of their original home cultures and their pre-War American host culture. This results in situations like almost all of the residents of Chinatown speaking English but maintaining the languages of their home cultures among a few individuals for ceremonial purposes. Ethnic food is also a prominent feature in Chinatown, though the residents have their own wasteland twists to their ancestors’ recipes as many of the pre-War ingredients are now not present.
An understood but not often discussed part of Chinatown’s culture is its supreme role in the community over business and individual wants. The community is determined to maintain its cultural identity after being preyed upon by the likes of the pre-War government, Chinese revolutionaries, Skull-Taker, raiders, and the New Order. This cultural supremacy has caused increasing friction in recent years as Seattle has become more connected, leading to Chinatown clamping down even harder on perceived threats to their cultural integrity.
Chinatown has bad recent history with the Badlanders with the arrival of the Alaska Pack in Seattle. The Badlanders have never directly attacked, but the tribals have attacked the Oriental Caravan Company before as well as other Chinatown residents. That has built up significant hatred in Chinatown for Badlanders, with none (even those not in the Alaska Pack) allowed in Chinatown. In fact, masks are also outlawed in Chinatown because of Badlanders.
The trade between Capitol Hill and Chinatown has been going on ever since the Great War. The Geigers are a peculiar people, but they have made reliable trading partners. That has included food and chems in the past, but in recent years, Chinatown's own chem trade has overwhelmed Capitol Hill's. Nonetheless, the two settlements retain cordial relations due to past alliances and the more recent Treaty of Capitol Hill.
After emerging from Vault 72, the vaults dwellers in Seattle were still initially under the thrall of their mechanical overseer.
A more recent arrival to Seattle, the Free Northwestern Army emerged first in Chinatown as the dream of one man in a single room of the Panama Hotel: Chen Song.
New California Republic
The New Order and Chinatown have foul history as the two fought each other for the better part of a century.
Points of Interest
Blue Heaven has been a part of Chinatown for almost as long as the community has existed, whether the residents like it or not. Originally founded in the 1920s in the basement space of the Louisa Hotel on Maynard Alley South, just south of South King Street, Blue Heaven operated an illegal club that attracted visitors for the gambling, dancing, and other forms of entertainment. The club has operated uninterrupted, except briefly after a shooting in the 1980s and the Great War, for the last two hundred years. The business has emerged from the shadows after the war and changed hands numerous times, but its services remain largely the same. It’s current owner, Syaoran Wu, has Blue Heaven mostly cater to caravaners and outsiders, since that brings the most caps his way. That has brought both the moralists and traditionalists down on Blue Heaven, though the caps have continued to roll in uninterrupted so far.
Chinatown Church of the New Disciples
Established in the 2250s, the Chinatown Church of the New Disciples came at a time when the community was more of outside influences. The New Disciples came to Chinatown from Yakima with the intention of converting the populace and found the town’s Filipino community already “cultural Catholics” ripe for conversion. As outsiders, the Disciple missionaries were initially met with fierce resistance by those seeing them as threats to Chinatown’s culture. The Chinatown Church of the New Disciples has mostly assimilated to Chinatown though, with its pastor Crisanto Sanchez becoming something of a moral guardian who campaigns alongside those who uphold the community’s culture laws.
An iconic part of the community, the Chinatown Gate marks the western entrance into Chinatown from the rest of the ruins of Seattle. The gate, a modern Paifang archway, was installed in 1990s and became an instant fixture of the neighborhood. The community had to fight to keep the gate before the war against racist mobs intent on destroying it and after the war against Skull-Taker and the raider scum that followed him. Today, the Chinatown Gate continues to stand proudly as an important cultural artifact and a symbol of the community’s perseverance through seemingly impossible odds.
East Kong Yick Building
The East Kong Yick Building was created before the Great War by the pooled resources of one hundred seventy Chinese-American pioneers, also known as the Kong Yick Investment Company. The building housed various business before the war but fell in disuse in the late 2060s. It was only really put back to use in 2264 by the Oriental Caravan Company. Since then, the building has become a hub of activity as caravaners, merchants, and bounty hunters pass through its halls going about their own business. The East Kong Yick Building has once again become an integral part of Chiantown’s community though some have become rather suspicious of the building and caravan’s owner.
Nippon Kan Theatre
The Nippon Kan Theatre is seen as an important part of the Japanese-American community in Chinatown, but little was been done to maintain the old building even before the Great War. Originally built in 1909 as a hotel and later converted, the Nippon Kan Theatre was first closed in 1942 during the Japanese-American internment, but reopened in 1981 through restorative efforts. After that, the building's use ebbed and flowed according to Seattle's Japanese population right up until the Great War. The building fell into disuse after the Great War but was often used as place of assembly for many in Chinatown's Japanese community. It only returned to its function as a theater in 2277 when the building was bought by Lao. Lao was a local businessman who wanted to preserve Chinatown's cultural heritage. However, that was not very successful as a business model and also Lao found it hard to get the Japanese community involved. The theater only acted as a theater a couple times before Lao sold the building on the cheap to Emily Tanaka, a former caravaner in 2287. Currently, Emily is mulling over her options of what to do with the Nippon Kan Theatre, whether to look back to its past as a theater or forward to the future with another more profitable role for the building.
The Panama Hotel is a large residential building within Chinatown. A historic hotel with brick facade dating from 1910 offering rooms with shared baths, plus a teahouse, the Panama Hotel was best remembered before the war for holding the possessions of interned Japanese-American families during WWII. Most of those families never came back for their possessions, and the later owners never removed them from the motel’s basement. That came in handy when people took refuge in the Panama Hotel after the Great War. As time went on, the Panama Hotel became something of a major residential building in Chinatown. The Panama Hotel, currently owned by Jade who recently bought and renovated it, acts as a sort of an apartment building for those with permanent residence in Chinatown. As per Chinatown’s laws, this excludes all outsiders besides spouses and children of residents though Jade has been known to skirt this law on several occasions. The residents of the Panama Hotel are mostly characterized as less than reputable with notable examples being Jialong Zhou and Chen Song. Jade hopes to class up the joint though by telling the Japanese baths in the future, though this is still in the works.
Originally a Japanese family supermarket, Uwajimaya Village was transformed post-War into a center of commerce within Chinatown’s community. An important holdout position when Skull-Taker razed large parts of Chinatown, it in Uwajimaya Village that many people lived in the years after the Great War. Over time, people migrated back into the ruins, and Uwajimaya Village became less of a living space and more of a marketplace. Today, it serves as major vein for commerce inside and outside of Chinatown. Outsiders and residents mingle within the walls of the old supermarket, buying and selling just about everything.
Colonel Chen Song
- "Ever wonder why people still call America a wasteland? It’s a toxic mindset we’ve adopted, that the world can’t be fixed."
- ―Chen Song
Colonel Chen Song is a failed artist and an amateur philosopher who is now an officer in the Free Northwestern Army due to his recent accomplishments. Descended from Chinese-Americans, Chen hopes to bring democracy back to the wasteland and sees the FNA as a way of doing that.
Pastor Crisanto Sanchez
- "Sin is our true enemy in this world, not radiation or hunger. A righteous man can be irradiated or hungry and still live a virtuous life while a weaker man raids with neither ailment as an excuse."
- ―Pastor Crisanto Sanchez
Pastor Crisanto Sanchez is a Disciple preacher and a prominent member of Chinatown's Filipino community.
- "I will not let our culture be trampled upon by outsiders, whether they come with a raised fist or honeyed words."
- ―Delun Cao
Delun Cao is the leader of the most prominent militia in Chinatown, the Painted Dragons, and is something of a military leader within the community when needed.
- "So I own a theater. Now what?"
- ―Emily Tanaka
Emily Tanaka is a former caravaner for the Oriental Caravan Company and the newly minted proprietor of the Nippon Kan Theatre, a major cultural artifact of Chinatown's Japanese community.
Jade is a wealthy women who supposedly made her fortune in the Oregon Brushfire Wars and as a shareholder in the Oriental Caravan Company. In reality, Jade is a chem kingpin who has her claws deep in Chinatown, the rest of Seattle, and even farther out in other parts of Cascadia.
Jade was born Jia He in 2247 to parents of Taiwanese heritage in Chinatown.
- "Authentic Chinese tea ceremonies, right here!"
- ―Jialong Zhou
Jialong Zhou is a con man who originated from Chinatown but has mostly wandered the wastes until his return recently. He is seen as an outcast by most in Chinatown but is allowed to stay within the community due to the secret insistence of his family.
- "I remember a haul I took to Portland back in ‘85. That was a mistake, I tell you what!"
- ―Shuang Brown
Shuang Brown is one of the most important caravaners in the Oriental Caravan Company and has a much more progressive view of the future than most in Chinatown, mostly due to his family's mixed origins and his time spent outside the community.
- "A lot has changed since I arrived this country. Can’t honestly say whether it’s for the better or for the worst. Filthy capitalists deserved what they got anyway."
- ―Sun Kang
Sun Kang is a ghoul and one of the last remaining survivors of The Tongmeng. Even though he worked for the Chinese Communist government before the war, Sun Kang has been welcomed into Chinatown over time as his pre-War loyalties have been forgotten.
- "Come in, enjoy yourself! We’ve got plenty of booze and girls for everyone."
- ―Syaoran Wu
Syaoran Wu is the proprietor of Blue Heaven and a less reputable member of Chinatown's community, though that does not mean he cannot be congenial. Contrary to what his name may indicate, he is of mixed origins and was adopted by Chinese parents.
- "The people back home may be a hateful bunch, but they’re my people. "
- ―Jialong Zhou
- "Squinty bastards, I mourn that my comrades were unable to raze that fount of cultural pestilence."
- "Good place for food and culture, if you can stand the dirty looks. Wouldn’t recommend if you want intend on looking for someplace to settle down if you don’t look like the residents."
- ―Harold Peters
|This has been written by MongoosePirate. Please contact this user before editing this article.|