Provided below is a brief history of the city of Austin; there are many details that are left unspecified left to the players of Hidden Parlor ATX to fill with the exploits and history of their own characters.
The city of Austin has always been high risk, high reward; the beauty and power found here is not like that of the overwhelming metropolises of New York or Los Angeles - it is something sweeter, something that soothes the soul. In exchange, however, a price always seems to be extracted - no Prince has been able to command a longstanding Praxis in Austin since the city’s inception. The security of the city, even in modern nights, enjoys a sadistic undulation; peace and conflict, stability and collapse.
Between the named Princes in this document were the fledgling Praxis that hardly maintained themselves for even a few years at a time; only the names of those Princes who left a lasting impact on the city are remembered.
The rest have been devoured by time and memory - no one recalls the weak.
Pre 1830s – The Austin area is frequented by nomadic Native American tribes, chief among them the Comanches and Apache. In the 1730s a small group of Spanish friars establish some temporary missions near Barton Springs; they quickly find the area inhospitable and move to San Antonio.
1836 – With the end of the Texas Revolution comes the formation of the independent Republic of Texas; despite the victory, sustained political turmoil continues to destablize region.
1837 – The first permanent settlement in the area is established by Anglo-American frontiersmen, near the confluence of the winding Colorado River and Shoal Creek; they call their city Waterloo.
1839 – A parcel of land containing Waterloo is purchased by the current President of the Republic of Texas. The town is renamed Austin, and the small and hard-to-defend territory was officially made the capital; this controversial move did nothing to improve the Republic of Texas’ political turbulence.
1840s – As the population swelled in the newly minted capital, the first sustained Camarilla court is founded by a Gangrel named Lester Sawicki. Despite it’s small size and relative isolation, the court nevertheless sustains itself well along the frontier. Most antagonism arises from Sabbat incursions from the South and the occasional werewolf.
1847 – After a sudden decline in mortal population to nearly unsustainable levels following congressional infighting that left the political function of Austin in question, Lester Sawicki abruptly dissolves the court and departs to places unknown. The squabbling between the remaining vampires in the area mirrors the fate of Austin; by 1850 most vampires in Austin have moved into to outskirts of the city or away from the area entirely.
1861 – Texas secedes from the Union, and joins the Civil War on the side of the Confederacy. This period of time is exceptionally dangerous for the city; Sabbat incursions increased dramatically and nearly the entire city remains Sabbat controlled until Reconstruction. The mortal population suffers from rapid inflation and population loss from wartime casualties.
1870s – Reconstruction brings an economic boom to Austin, which is officially named the state’s capital in 1872. Permanent masonry buildings begin to replace the wooden temporary saloons and wagon yards of the Downtown area. The Houston and Central Texas Railway opens and the population swells to larger than it had ever been.
At this time a strong Camarilla court repels the Sabbat, led by a Nosferatu named Whippoorwill. This Prince manages the kindred of Austin with a more present and far steadier hand than her more mercurial Gangrel predecessor and the intervening petty Praxises.
1900 – The Austin Dam (a problematic engineering project from the start) breaks in the early morning after a heavy Spring rain, flooding part of the city. Almost two dozen mortals drown and over 100 homes are destroyed; Prince Whippoorwill goes missing in the disaster and her body is never found. The court falls into disarray and paranoia; the issue of the dam’s failure being providence or kindred meddling keeps the court stratified for some years.
1930s – Well into the Great Depression, a new unified court is formed under a Toreador Prince Euphrates Tate; the Prince is heavily involved in mortal politics and takes credit (much to the chagrin of local Ventrue) for the fact that Austin suffers less than expected during the harsh economic downturn.
Learning from his predecessors, he tries to keep the Tower safe and stable by holding court in rotating locations; the event is tagged as “Apotheke 28”, in honor of his Germanic seneschal and the state’s acceptance into the Union.
1970s – Led to the area by particularly gruesome Sabbat activities in the south of the city, hunters begin to arrive in Austin. At first their behavior is random and ineffectual as they are only loosely affiliated; with unexplained efficiency they all unite fronting as an environmentalist group who has a heavy influence in the successful attempts to keep the population growth in the city down. Vampires suffer from the decline in readily available meals.
1979 – Prince Tate, alongside some of his intrepid courtiers, manage to infiltrate and destroy a major hunter stronghold; the cell is destroyed, but so too is the Prince. The court once again finds itself unraveling after the tragedy; Apotheke 28 events are still held, but their frequency dwindles.
1999 – The Nights of Turmoil begin; the Gangrel leave the Camarilla. The Sabbat presence in Austin swells again, and the Red Star appears in the sky. The Kindred of Austin duck into their havens and nervously watch what is widely prophesized to be the End Times.
2004 – Frost Bank Tower opens alongside Ventrue Ursa Grunwald’s rise to power. The hunters of Austin provide a significant (unintended) boon to the Camarilla court by decimating the Sabbat that overran the city; the Ventrue Prince personally sees to the final routing of the rest of what remains. She claims Praxis without a whisper of opposition and reinstates the tradition of the Apotheke 28 event.
2009 - The Nights of Turmoil end; the Red Star fades. Despite the survival of the Camarilla after this cataclysmic events, the Inner Circle is forced to admit the existence of Antediluvians; their stance becomes that they are the watchful, protective progenitors of the Tower - any insinuation about their insatiable hunger for vampiric blood is slander, and the Book of Nod is still heresy.
2011 - The Independent Alliance is formalized between the Giovanni and the Followers of Set, following the dissolution of the Promise. This newly formed proto-sect is treated with distrust by the Austinite Camarilla kindred. The Gangrel are welcomed back into the Camarilla with the blessing of the Inner Circle; however, they receive no Justicar and their role in the Tower is severely limited.
2014 – The sophisticated hunters who assisted in corralling the Sabbat nearly 10 years prior aggressively remind the kindred of Austin of their presence following a riot started by Anarchs;the deaths do not just end with the unaffiliated. The assassination of two primogen - Ventrue and Brujah - rock the court. Following the assassination of her seneschal, Prince Grunwald issues an order that all kindred in the city go to ground. Apotheke 28 is suspended until further notice.
June 2016 – After nearly two years of intense secrecy, the blackout order is lifted. The Camarilla kindred are welcomed back to the court at Apotheke 28, to see those whom they haven’t spoken to in years, discuss the current politics of their sect, and to investigate the mysteries which still remain unsolved in these modern nights.
The following are the 26 domains of Austin; each of these domains can be investigated by a clan or coterie using a combination of THREE (3) DOWNTIME ACTIONS. Those who participated in the investigation will receive a task that will task FIVE (5) DOWNTIME ACTIONS to fulfill, and once the territory has been properly looked after by a group, that group may petition the Prince for stewardship during formal court. Stewards gain a floating dot in the skill/background associated with their territory (or territories) while in Austin.
1. Downtown - THE PRINCE - The Rack, Elysium, the seat of Kindred Power
2. South Congress - TOREADOR TERRITORY [HERD]
3. Southpark Meadows - HUNTERS - [HERD]
4. Onion Creek - BRUJAH - [SECURITY]
5. East Riverside - BRUJAH TERRITORY [INTIMIDATION]
6. East 51'st - MALKAVIAN TERRITORY [OCCULT]
7. University of Texas - TREMERE TERRITORY [ACADEMICS]
8. West Lake - NOSFERATU TERRITORY [SUBTERFUGE]
9. Bee Caves - TOREADOR - [RESOURCES]
10. Bear Creek - VENTRUE - [RESOURCES]
11. Buda - TREMERE - [HAVEN]
12. Elroy - ANARCH - [FIREARMS]
13. Weberville - OPEN - [ATHLETICS]
14. Old Manor - TOREADOR - [ANIMAL KEN]
15. Walnut Creek - MALKAVIAN - [COMPUTER]
16. Jollyville - TREMERE - [LORE]
17. Lake Travis - OPEN - [MEDICINE]
18. Cedar Valley - NOSFERATU - [HAVEN]
19. Bastrop - OPEN - [DRIVE]
20. Pflugerville - VENTRUE TERRITORY [LEADERSHIP]
21. Round Rock - OPEN - [BRAWL]
22. Cedar Park - GANGREL - [SCIENCE]
23. Volente - MALKAVIAN - [UNDERWORLD INFLUENCE]
24. Lakeway - TOREADOR - [ELITE INFLUENCE]
25. Hutto - HUNTERS - [STREETWISE]
26. Balcones Woods - GANGREL TERRITORY [SURVIVAL]