Tomes of Terror
Welcome to Arkham, a classic and darkly beautiful Massachussets city with a small town feel. Built centuries ago by traders and merchants, this city has a close affinity to the sea due to the times when old yankee clippers and schooners would put to sail a short distance away down the Miskatonic river.
These days most residents believe that the only horror lurking in this legendary haunted town is the urban sprawl that they fear is slowly corroding Arkham’s old New England beauty. Almost no one has the time to notice the more disturbing, underlying qualities of the city – the grotesque vegetation sprouting in some places, the sometimes odd tasting water from the nearby reservoir, or the disturbing high rate of birth defects and the far too frequent child abductions.
Arkham is 40 minutes drive north-east of Boston along state Route 1-A, itself an exit off highway Route 128. Route 128 is synonymous with industrial and commercial growth, as well as the occasional traffic gridlock.
The main newspaper is the Arkham Advertiser which captures the bizarre comings and goings around town as well as being host to private ads. The newspaper archives are an excellent source for local enquiries.
Arkham consists of a number of distinct districts that each have their own history, culture and feel. They are:
Northside, which features a number of prominent historical, commercial and fine residential buildings. It is known for its many mansions and large family homes of the well to do.
Downtown, is where daily government and law and order takes place; the city library, police department and courthouse are all located here as is City Hall as well as the wonderful Independence Square and its park benches and monuments.
Merchant Section, is south of the river and has seen better days. Despite its name it is no longer the commercial centre of the city and is in need of urban renewal. A scattering of a few trendy shops offer some hope for the future.
Rivertown, is a diverse district and home to the many waves of immigrants that have come to the city over the years. You will hear many languages spoken on its streets, but don’t loiter after dark as street crime is rampant here.
Miskatonic University Campus, sits smack bang, right in the middle of town, taking up several blocks, south of the river. In many ways it is the beating heart of the city.
French Hill, is where you can find some of Arkham’s oldest buildings. Trendy, upwardly mobile young professionals live here and often commute daily to Boston. Keziah Mason’s notorious Witch House was located in this area.
Uptown, is the highest priced and most exclusive area of Arkham. The streets and sidewalks of this neighbourhood are noticeably better than the rest of town. Most people who live here don’t have any idea who their neighbours are.
Lower Southside, where twisting streets are riddled with potholes and many street lamps are out. Just like Rivertown, crime is on the rise here and the warren of winding passageways make it the ideal place to be mugged.
Maps of Arkham can be found in the Maps section of this campaign.