A Fistful of Coppers
A Brief History of the North Shore Region
The North Shore region, defined as the lands north of the Sea of Fallen Stars and south of the Earthfast Mountains, was once considered the southernmost section of the Vast. The Vast was known for its rolling grasslands and dense forests, and attracted sparse hunting and agricultural settlements from a variety of races. The lands south of the Earthfasts was more isolated and had access to the sea, and over time came to acquire its own identity.
The initial settlement of the North Shore was Tsurlagol. Its wide, sheltered bay made it a natural harbor for fishermen, and its proximity to the Gray Forest also attracted lumberjacks and loggers. The town of Procampur actually began as a logging camp (Procampur being the word for ‘campsite’ in the local dialect of the time.)
Over time these industries flourished. Procampur grew into a small lumber town while Tsurlagol exploded into a small city known for its fisheries, agriculture, and great harbor. The discovery of high-quality copper ore in the Earthfast Mountains only added to the region’s bounty. A mining camp (later named Lastfall) was established at the foot of the mountains, and the area began to attract dwarven mining clans and laborers of all races as well. Other than some isolated pirate attacks, the area was safe and stable, and its growth potential seemed able to rival that of the Sword Coast.
Then disaster struck. Some sixty years ago, a series of earthquakes was felt throughout the region as the sea rose to swallow the coastline. Procampur was flooded and many of its buildings destroyed. Dozens of lives were lost, but that was nothing compared to Tsurlagol’s fate.
Tsurlagol harbor rose up and engulfed the entire city. While Procampur’s flood waters receded fairly quickly, Tsurlagol remained inundated. Many hundreds of people died, and those remaining fled the city with little more than the clothes on their backs. The harbor was filled with sediment, and the city and the lands surrounding it became a great brackish swamp. Tsurlagol was lost.
Some refugees went to Procampur, to try and re-establish a harbor and the shipping industry. Most, looking to get as far from the sea as possible and attracted by the burgeoning mining trade, went to Lastfall. The camp received thousands of refugees, and almost immediately put most of them to work.
The quakes had disturbed a large underground lake deep within the Earthfasts. Its waters issued forth to form a river flowing from Lastfall (named for its proximity to the last waterfall at the foot of the mountains) down to Procampur. This new river was quickly named the Mercy, for it allowed shipping by barge to and from the growing city of Lastfall. Procampur grew along the shores of the Mercy as well, and a respectable harbor was constructed (although nowhere near the size of Tsurlagol’s in its prime). Procampur was reborn as Lastfall thrived.
Procampur now exists as a medium-sized town, centered around it’s fishing, logging and shipping industries. Tall ships fill its harbor and sailors walk its streets. Though there are few who were alive during the Deluge, it’s legacy is passed on, and remembrances are held for those lost during the disaster.
Tsurlagol is now nothing but ruins in the center of a great swamp. Scavengers once traveled there to seek any treasures that may have been left behind, but few returned with anything of value. Though its memory is kept alive, no one goes to Tsurlagol anymore.
Tsurlagol’s loss was Lastfall’s gain. The mining camp quickly grew into a thriving and prosperous city, and the hub of the copper mining industry. As ore veins were played out, the mining trade grew eastward. A mining trail known as the Copperline that linked Lastfall with the eastern mining settlements of Telvorn and Milvorn became a well-traveled road.
A duke was appointed to oversee the running of Lastfall and protect its economic interests. The first man to hold this office was the son of the mayor who directed the tide of Tsurlagol refugees to grow the camp into the city it is today. Subsequent Dukes have been elected by the people of the city.