"Caritas, educatio, justitia (Latin ; Caring, education and justice)" -- North Salem motto
North Salem is a small, unincoprorated town in upstate New York located in Westchester County, just under 4 hours north of New York City. It is an affluent community that "has no middle class", according to Jonathan Bridges. This income disparity is responsible for a high degree of class resentment within the community.
The north town line is the border of Hamilton County and the east town line is the border of Saratoga County. The northwest end of Great Sacandaga Lake is in the town, where the Sacadanga River enters the lake. North Salem lies inside Adirondack Park. New York State Route 30 runs north-south through the town.
North Salem is a thriving affluent community, though it's taken a heavy hit since the events of the Final Battle. North Salem attracts patrons to its many restaurants and its lively arts and music scenes. North Salem has a particularly high number of restaurants per capita featuring a wide range of ethnic foods. Two North Salem farmers markets, held weekly, sell fresh produce from local farms. An extant opera house, the Academy of Music, is an 800-seat theater that operates as a venue for local productions and music acts.
As an unincorporated community, North Salem falls under the jurisdiction of the Sheriff. North Salem is informally governed by a "mayor" (an honorary title traditionally reserved for the holder of the local seat on the county Board of Supervisors).
North Salem has a huge gap between the rich elite and those who work for them, either directly or through service industry businesses. The largest and most successful businesses in the community, Corrigan Software, is run and operated by the parents of Holly Corrigan; Duncan and Kelly Corrigan. The company holds many software and computer patents and is responsible for the recent boom in the local economy. Most wealthy people choose to live here due to the prestige and because of its isolated nature; many rich people from the city moved here to get away from the public spotlight.
North Salem is a rail trail hub. Currently, the Salem Rail Trail extends 18 miles from West Hampton. The Manheim Rail Trail extends 8 miles south. Four other Rail Trail extensions are in the planning process, post-Final Battle.
North Salem has a cool, temperate climate and normal for upstate New York. Precipitation is approximately 47 inches, a bit higher than the national average and cloudy days are quite normal. North Salem is oddly windy.
North Salem is home to two different high schools: John Finn High School, a public school and St. Veronica's Prepatory School. The latter is a private school that is attended almost exlusively by the wealthy (as tuition is quite hefty), although it also grants five scholarships every year for various subjects or fields (art, academic, sports, etc). Erica Bridges, Carrie MacNamara and Sam Hudson were three scholarship students in the 2013-2014 school year.
The main hospital serving the area is Westchester County. For most common instances, there is one private practice in town and a Quik Care facility, the latter of which was the facility that served the Bridges for 17 years.
As of the 2010 census, there are 2,670 people living in North Salem. Racial makeup of the town is 98.26% White, 1.09% Hispanic/Latino, .80% from two or more races, .33% African American, .29% Asian American, .25% from other races and .07% Native American. The median age is 42 years old.
For such a small town, a lot of supernatural incidents happened in and around it. The town seemed to constantly be in the middle of some kind of supernatural crisis, not to mention how things went during Clive's reign after the Snow Ball (it was constantly patrolled by vampires, psychics and other monsters). North Salem is very supernaturally charged, thanks to two major factors: a very high number of spirits and the energy from the North Salem Lodestone.
Long before human settlers arrived, the Lodestone was erected by unknown powers using unknown methods. It was a holy site for the Native Americans for many centuries. The area now known as North Salem was once known as Nodwick by its original Pocumtuc inhabitants. According to various accounts, the town was named by Steven Kingston (1630--1704), one of its original settlers, or possibly in King's honor, since it is supposed that he came to New York from Salem, Massachusetts. Kingston was actually a Warlock who escaped the Witch Trials. This was the beginning of the area's connection to the supernatural.
The petition for township was approved by the general court in 1693, where it was a town inhabited primarily by farmers and secret Witches and Warlocks. The first wealthy settlers were attracted to the town and settled just after the American Revolution, including the Finn family. The Whitmans, slaves owned by a wealthy woodcutting family, came to the region around the same time.
Tragedy and DeclineEdit
In 1888, Jack Finn was mauled by a bear on a hill just outside of town. A statue was erected to honor the fallen hero, as well. In truth, Finn was killed by a time-traveling Elijah Porter, who slaughtered him in werewolf form for threatening to rape Erica Bridges (long story).
During the mid-20th century, North Salem experienced several decades of economic decline, bottoming in the 1970s, related to the emergence of the Rust Belt phenomenon. Though northern New York lies outside of the Rust Belt geographically, the centrality of commerce left North Salem economically vulnerable, in particular when compounded with decline of the region's manufacturing factor.
The town was reinvigorated in the 1980s, with the emerging computer and technology sector and Corrigon Software. Even more wealthy people began to come to the region. By 1996, the region was booming and more or less to the current economic standards of today.
In early 2013, the region began becoming afflicted by many supernatural incidents, the majority of which were orchestrated by the lich Clive Talbot. Jonathan Bridges, local psychic detective, began looking into the majority of them, but his daughter Erica and her friends investigated a fair few of these, as well.
After the fire at the First Christian Church and the murders of the Corrigons, the Finns and the Whitmans, the town was thrown into a panic. A puppet mayor was installed by Clive Talbot and a secret army of vampires, psychics, witches and werewolves, among other monsters, were made to patrol the town and the surrounding area in their search for either Erica Bridges or her stepfather.
That year was oppressive as the town was strictly regulated, with a curfew, and ruled with an iron fist. The townsfolk never found out about the supernatural aspects of their situation.
The Final BattleEdit
On December 21, 2014, Clive Talbot and his army of evil creatures assembled in the town so Clive could perform the Unmaking. Erica Bridges, along with her friends, an army of Hoffman Institute Agents, a pack of Werewolves united by Mike Evergreen and a band of hunters rallied by Jonathan Bridges, fought Clive's forces to prevent the end of reality. The fighting was brutal, bloody and devastating, destroying a good portion of town and more or less burning the rest, in an incident known as the Final Battle.
The Unmaking took place at the Lodestone. Erica arrived in time to stop her evil biological father, but at the expense of Sam Hudson. Barry Finn also died during the fight; killed by the vampire Alberto Bianchi.
After the battle, North Salem was told the fighting occurred due to a terrorist attack. Thanks to its wealthy residents and a number of fund raisers and federal relief efforts, the town has finally cleared the debris and started to rebuild.
Points of InterestEdit
- The First Christian Church [Destroyed]: The home of Johann Edmundson, an 18th century theologian and hunter of the occult. The church was the place where Clive Talbot and Claire Van Dyke married, where Clive took Erica and her friends the night of the Snow Ball and the site where Leonardo Bianchi died. Burned down in February of 2012, was not rebuilt and then destroyed entirely in the fighting during the Final Battle.
- Elm Street Historic District [Damaged]: Runs from the commencement of Elm at State Street almost one mile westerly to Woodlawn Avenue and includes a section of Crystal Lake Road. A local historic district, it includes a range of architectural styles from 18th century Colonial to Contemporary with an abundance of Queen Anne and Colonial Revial homes and other styles. Was badly damaged during the Final Battle; most of the houses saw actual fighting, spell effects, explosions and fires. The Historic District is unrecognizable today and much of the damage has not been repaired.
- Hammond Park: A 150+ acre recreational park founded in 1930. The park is free for visitors arriving by foot or bicycle. A day-use fee or annual membership provides parking.
- Kidd Park: A serene 40-acre park near the Quik Care. It features two ponds, formal gardens and rose gardens, and an Italian-stye greenhouse, which was destroyed during the Final Battle but has since been rebuilt.
- The Miller Gateway: A walking path near the Bay Village neighborhood (where Erica Bridges lived). The path is sometimes also called the Paradise Pond Trail based on a misleadingly named portion of the river. Was surprisingly not damaged too badly during the Final Battle.
- The Beanery [Destroyed]: A popular coffee shop where high school kids hang out. Destroyed when the block where it was located was burned down during the Final Battle, due to Group B's distraction.
- Bridges Investigations [Closed]: A private detective agency owned and operated by Jonathan Bridges. Also worked many cases of banishing spirits. The building was one of the few not destroyed by the Final Battle.
- Johansson's Antique Shop [Destroyed]: An antique shop where Erica and Barry stole a marble bowl and a silver dagger, among other things. Destroyed in the fighting during the Final Battle.
- McDonald's: A fast food restaurant. According to Alberto, has the only good coffee in the country. Was destroyed in the Final Battle but has been rebuilt.
- Smith & Finn Law Offices [Destroyed]: A law office where Barry Finn's father worked. Destroyed in the fighting during the final battle. The firm has since changed locations.
- St. Victoria's Prepatory School: A private school attended by primarily the sons of the town's wealthy elite. The site of an exorcism in January of 2013. Was damaged beyond repair in the fighting during the Final Battle but has since been rebuilt.
- Whitman's Grocery: The main grocery store franchise in North Salem, founded by the ancestor of the town's mayor, the late Phillip Whitman. Was badly damaged in October in 2014, repaired, nearly destroyed in The Final Battle but has since been repaired.
- Forbes Library: Built in 1894, this is the local library in North Salem. Where Erica did some of her early research. Damaged during the Final Battle, but not terribly so.
The Weekly Salem Gazette is a weekly morning newspaper, based in North Salem, covering local news.
North Salem is home to one radio station; WZOY, a low-power community radio station owned and operated by Valley Free Radio. The station was built by more than 72 volunteers around the county in August 2005. They broadcast music, news, public affairs and locally produced radio content to listeners. Sam Hudson once played with his band live on the radio.
- The Bridges House: Originally the home of the Van Dyke family, it passed to Jonathan and Claire when they moved to North Salem from Portland, Oregon after Clive's first death in 1995. It was not damaged or destroyed in the Final Battle and still stands today.
- The North Salem Lodestone: A stone formation that has been there since before the Native Americans settled the region. Has a vast amount of latent supernatural power. Was the site of the Unmaking during the Final Battle and the site where Clive Talbot, Sam Hudson and Barry Finn died.
- The Power Station: An underground portion of the power grid that provides power to the neighborhoods on the outskirts of town. Where Erica, Sam and Troy battled a Rot Lord.
- Finn House [Destroyed]: The house of the prominent Finn family. Was burned down in early 2014 and has not been rebuilt.
- Whitman Mayoral House [Destroyed]: Home of Mayor Whitman's family. Was destroyed the night of the Snow Ball and has not been rebuilt.
--21% of North Salem is protected open space, including many fields, rivers and conservation areas.
--On a small hill overlooking the city is a simple statue monument that marks the spot where local hero Jack Finn was mauled by a bear in 1888.
Notable Residents Edit
|Claire Bridges||40||Witch (Healing)||Grew up here, well known around town; regarded well.||Alive|
|Erica Bridges||21 (20 legally)||Psychic (Sniffer)||Raised in town, seen as a bit odd. Moved away in 2014.||Alive|
|Jonathan Bridges||41||Psychic (Reader)||Seen as an eccentric at best and possibly crazy at worst.||Alive|
|Weezy||6||Pug||Erica's dog. Sassy. Moved away with Erica in 2014.||Alive|
|Holly Corrigan||1997-2014 (died aged 17)||Mage (Conjuration)||Daughter of Mark Corrigan, of Corrigan Software. Popular queen bee. Bullied Erica. Went missing in early 2014 and is confirmed to have passed away. The auditorium at the rebuilt St. Victoria's is named after her.||Deceased|
|Gregory Dean||1975-2014 (died aged 39)||Werewolf||Former History teacher at St. Veronica's.||Deceased|
|Barry Finn||21||Psychic (Dominator)||Rebellious son of local prominent lawyer. Went missing in 2014.||Alive|
|Lucy Hudson||16||Human||Sister of Sam Hudson, lived for about a year, until November 2014, when she moved back to Boston.||Alive|
|Sam Hudson||1997-2014 (died age 18)||Human||Brother of Lucy Hudson. Went missing in February 2014, was later confirmed dead.||Deceased|
|Carrie McNamara||1997-2014 (died age 17)||Human||Student at St. Veronica's. Went missing in February 2014, was later confirmed dead.||Deceased|
|Arthur van Dyke||62||Human||Longtime resident, formerly owned an auto garage. Recently moved back.||Alive|
|Troy Whitman||20||Human||Son of the former mayor; moved to New York City after the Final Battle.||Alive|