Lockwood Setting
Hickoryville, PA
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Population 21,320
Founded October 30, 1788
Area Code 814
Location Northwest PA (below Erie, on Interstate 79)

Hickoryville, PA

One of the first cities populated in the Northwest of Pennsylvania, Hickoryville was founded once the new United States started to branch out from the Thirteen Colonies. At the end of the Revolutionary War, the Americans revoked the treaty signed at the end of the French and Indian War, claiming that the Indian Reserve of 1763 created by that treaty no longer existed. As such, Congress granted war veterans tracts of land in western New York and northern Pennsylvania. This caused friction between some of the Native Americans tribes and the new settlers and there were many clashes over the course of the next ten years. Eventually, the settlers drove off the Wyandot Tribes toward Canada and remained peaceable enough allies with the Iroquois and the Lenape.

As the United States aged and grew, so did Hickoryville. Once the Industrial Revolution roared, Hickoryville became a main transportation point for steel traveling from Erie to Pittsburgh. Mills and plants grew to accommodate the new industry. Railroads crisscrossed to take steel to lower Pennsylvania as well as through Ohio. Many grew rich in the boom and contributed back to the town. A small college (Hickoryville College) was built as was a large public library. During the 1800s, the city contributed in a small way to the Underground Railroad. There are still tunnels running from some of the older houses to the Blessed Mary Church of the Immaculate Conception.

After the crash of the steel industry, Hickoryville's joblessness skyrocketed. Plants closed and the downtown area became lined with out of business signs. With a concerted effort by the state and city governments, it has started to come back by rebranding and bringing it's prime position for industrial railroads into play. Late in the 90s it started to see its population increase for the first time in thirty years. It still has economic troubles and a higher unemployment rating than most of the US, but it is slowly coming back into its own.

Geography

Hickoryville was an old industrial town. The remnants of its old factories are still rusting on the outskirts of city. The lots are boarded up and most of the windows have been broken out. In the 90s, one of the older mills collapsed during a heavy snowstorm and killed 20 homeless people camping out in its crumbling husk. After that, the city attempted to knock down most of the others, leaving empty lots with large rotting boards proclaiming 'Danger: Do Not Enter' on them. There has been talk of a developing company buying Broadmore Mill and turning it into a chic apartment complex, but that has yet to happen.

The downtown area has started to come back, with the Wisk District becoming the new 'hot' area for the younger set. New restaurants and bars have taken over in what used to be tenement buildings for the mill workers. Downtown Proper still has an old movie theatre that has seen better days as well as a Lowes with eight movie screens. It is a mix between brand stores (such as Home Depot and Lowes and Starbucks) as well as the mom and pop stores struggling to compete.

The Railroad that is slowly bringing people back to the area is located to the East of town where it is zoned for office buildings and the like. The rail yard is a criss-cross of different tracks leading off in directions to New York, DC, Kansas, Washington.

To the north is the bad part of town, still wracked by unemployment and condemned housing. There is talk of gang violence, but most people believe that the city is still too small to have gangs. There is an outbreak of drugs in the north side - meth being the most significant problem. As such, the police do regular drug raids, but the citizens of the town know that venturing into those neighborhoods will most likely end in trouble in a place where the local police do not venture there unless forced.

To the west is the large forested area known as the State Game Lands, where many of the residents hunt during deer season. It's been known to house some of the homeless off season and is not the safest place to go out alone after dark. Environmentally minded people hike and climb there, camping out with the proper permits.

Lockwood Towers.

The majority of the theme is centralized in Lockwood Towers.

Building Details:

  • The turn-of-the-century building was made into apartments in the 1930s.
  • 10 stories, wider than it is tall. The adjacent, smaller building is attached, a slightly newer development that, at some point in history, used to be all part of the same complex. Now, there are no connecting doors.
  • The apartment building's basement includes the laundry room, maintenance and basement level apartments.
  • The first floor retains the most of the original architecture and includes security, an office, a small pool added in the 30s and mostly unchanged since then, and a very small gym off of the pool area containing just a few machines.
  • Buzzer-entry. No doorman. It looks fancier from the outside.
  • Two old elevators with gates, plus stairs.
  • Accessible roof.
  • The office building contains the Jaberwocky Cafe.
  • Two levels of underground parking under the office building serve both sides.
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