- "STAY OUT!!! PRIVATE PROPERTY!!!"
- ―A common sign within Oregon City
Oregon City was originally founded in 1829 by the Hudson's Bay Company's Dr. John McLoughlin near the confluence of the Clackamas River with the Willamette to take advantage of the power of Willamette Falls to run a lumber mill. In the late nineteenth century, Oregon City was a common destination for those wanting to file land claims after traveling the Oregon Trail as the last stop on the trail. It was the capital of the Oregon Territory from its establishment in 1848 until 1851, and rivaled Portland for early supremacy in the area. In 1846, the town's newspaper, the Oregon Spectator, was the first American newspaper to be published west of the Rocky Mountains.
The town declined in importance in the next two centuries as power moved to more urban centers. When the Great War finally came, Oregon City was devastated by radiation from Portland. The entire town emptied out, with the population either dying from radiation poisoning or fleeing to parts unknown. Flooding plagued Oregon City soon afterwards. At one time, the whole lower part of town was submerged for up to two weeks. By the end of 2077, Oregon City had become a ghost town.
For a century and a half, Oregon City remained empty, deteriorating over time. It only hosted a couple of scavengers over a couple of years, who made temporary nests there to salvage scrap metal and electronics from the ruins of Portland.
Things finally changed in 2235 when the Sons of Liberty arrived from the north and settled down in the Willamette Valley. Many of the Sons of Liberty settled near the ruins of Oregon City and soon took an interest in the place. The new settlers from the Sons of Liberty first came in late 2235 to search for scrap. Those settlers stayed in the ruins and rebuilt new homes within Oregon City. This formed the nucleus of a new town, sharing the name of the first but still very different.
The Sons of Liberty claimed different parts of the new town as their property and chopped up Oregon City into several different pieces. The stubborn men started up their own businesses for industry and scavenging, causing Oregon City to grow quickly in the 2230's and 2240's. Oregon City's laissez-faire economy kept the town divided with the residents constantly competing against each other, giving the town a rather frontier attitude for many years.
With the defeat of the Oregon tribals in the Willamette Valley and the arrival of Owen Curtis, Oregon City began to grow at an even faster pace, becoming the largest settlement in NAP Territory and acting as the unofficial capital of the Sons of Liberty. Things got even better when some Sons of Liberty deactivated the hydroelectric please plants on the Willamette River, providing Oregon City with a plentiful source of electricity.
After the beginning of the Oregon Brushfire Wars, Oregon City has become a hotbed of anti-NCR sentiment due to its loyalties to the Sons of Liberty and its role as a sanctuary for rebels and malcontents fleeing NCR's advance north. The settlement was also where the Northwestern Alliance initially marshaled its forces in 2267 and marched south to war with the NCR.
That war, in particular, did end well for Oregon City but nonetheless, anti-NCR sentiment has persisted and has fueled growth as refugees from the south settled in a safe place under the protection of the Sons of Liberty. The settlement mostly centers its hate on the Free Northwestern Army and Badlanders, the NCR's primary representatives in the immediate region. The town's residents do not, however, hassle NCR caravaners, seeing them as a necessary part of the economy and more importantly not wanting to piss off the powerful caravan houses in NCR and Seattle. Oregon City was briefly bombarded by FNA mortars in 2284 but has mostly been unaffected by the war in terms of direct involvement.
Oregon City still stands defiant against the NCR and any who would oppose it, the largest settlement in NAP Territory. The residents of the town take great pride in their long fight against the Bear and have thin skin when it comes to their fight. They will fight for their rights to the end, even if it requires fighting each other.
The government of Oregon City is one of a libertarian model, with little taxes or oversight beyond law enforcement and some petty trade regulation. The settlement has a mayor, a sheriff, and several deputies.
Oregon City tends to be very hands-off, mostly letting its residents take care of disputes and live their own lives with minimal interference. The town government only interferes with people's life when things get violent.
The economy of Oregon City is rather urban, based on caravans and services rather than agriculture. This is sustained by forestry, its well-positioned place on caravan routes, and its profitable relationship with many smaller settlements and homesteads in NAP Territory. Oregon City's ready access to water is another commodity it takes advantage of. Fishing is a small part of the economy as well, but it is not large, due to fears of over-fishing. Hydroelectric power is provided by Oregon City to much of northern NAP Territory though it is mostly not used for commercial purposes.
Lumber is an essential part of Oregon City's economy, exporting much of its product south to California or to the various city-states in the north. Many of the Sons of Liberty in town are lumberjacks, self-employed or employed by the small lumber companies that have recently popped up around NAP Territory and other parts of Cascadia.
The town's layout is rather standard, at least on the upper area. In the center of Oregon City's upper area lies the shops, civic buildings, and caravan service buildings. Further out are the residential buildings where the common people live. In the lower area of Oregon City lies more residential buildings and small docks. The Willamette Falls Locks lie just across the Willamette but are currently inoperable. The dam at Willamette Falls meanwhile is operable and powers a couple of hydroelectric power plants that in turn power Oregon City and much of northern NAP Territory.
The culture of Oregon City is a rough and tumble one due to its lumberjack background and libertarian traditions. The Sons of Liberty within the town have little respect for any authority besides their own, offending the sensibilities of some caravaners. The people are tough but even they are considered to be soft city folk by NAP Territory standards.
Oregon City is divided into upper and lower areas. The lower area is on a bench next to the Willamette River. The upper area is atop a bluff composed of Canemah basalt. For many years, Indian trails connected the two levels, but stairs were built in the 1800s. Those stairs remain today, as the once-used electric elevator fell into disrepair after the bombs fell.
The major waterways of Oregon City include the Willamette River, which flows along the northwest side of the city, and the Clackamas River, which merges with the larger Willamette to the north of the town.
The Oregon Brushfire Wars have affected Oregon City's relations with groups outside of NAP Territory in a very critical way. Oregon City, being mostly populated by Sons of Liberty, is naturally hostile to NCR, FNA, and Badlanders. They tolerate caravans from NCR but give them a wide berth usually. Meanwhile, non-NCR caravans are readily accepted by the townspeople. Bigotry against mutants and tribals is present but not as prevalent as it was before the Oregon Brushfire Wars, when the Sons of Liberty fought alongside both groups.
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