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Aerodex Entry

Columbia, officially the Federal Republic of Columbia, is a constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the Empire State; on the south by the Outer Banks (a military protectorate of the Confederation of Dixie); to the west by the Appalachian Territory; and to the east by the Atlantic Ocean. Covering roughly 15,600 square miles, Columbia is the smallest of the former nations of North America (the next largest, the Atlantic Coalition, measures 17,640 mi^2), however Columbia boasts a population of 2.8 million people. Columbia is a federal constitutional republic comprised of four Districts.

Columbia is viewed as both the architect and the victim of the fall of the United States. It retains the legal and administrative framework of the USA and continues to be influenced by its legacy. The federal government played a major role in the regionalization of the U.S.A. in the years following the Great War, but ironically, the political changes that swept the nation during the 1920s left the president virtually powerless to combat the spate of secessions that followed the Wall Street Crash.

Despite the regional and international challenges, Columbia has managed to position itself as a meeting ground for diplomats and traders from across North America and the world. Its neutrality, coupled with the presence of the League of Nations headquarters in Washington, has made it a major international crossroads.


The Federal Republic of Columbia is a nation encompassing a diverse and captivating landscape. Nestled between the Empire State to the north and the Outer Banks (a military protectorate of the Confederation of Dixie) to the south, Columbia stretches across approximately 15,600 square miles of land. Despite its relatively small size, the nation's geography showcases a blend of coastal beauty, rolling plains, and pockets of elevated terrain.

The eastern border of Columbia is defined by the vast expanse of the Atlantic Ocean. Its coastline, dotted with sandy beaches and coastal estuaries, provides access to maritime trade and plays a significant role in the nation's economy. The coastal regions also serve as gateways for cultural exchange and international diplomacy, with the bustling capital city of Columbia, Washington, D.C., situated along the eastern seaboard.

Inland, the landscape transitions to fertile plains and rolling hills. Columbia's heartland is characterized by verdant farmlands, contributing to the nation's agricultural productivity. The interior regions boast a network of rivers and waterways, including the Potomac River, which traverses through the nation, serving as a vital transportation route and source of freshwater resources.

To the west, Columbia is bordered by the Appalachian Territory, a separate nation known for its majestic mountain ranges. While Columbia does not encompass the entire Appalachian Mountain range, it does feature some smaller mountainous areas within its borders. These elevated regions offer picturesque landscapes and serve as a source of natural resources, attracting nature enthusiasts and providing opportunities for outdoor recreation.

Columbia's geography, with its diverse coastal areas, fertile plains, and pockets of elevated terrain, reflects the nation's resilience and natural beauty. The varied landscape contributes to the nation's cultural identity and provides a backdrop for its economic activities, ranging from maritime trade to agriculture and tourism.

Political History

Washington's shrinking reach

Though the U.S. Navy's Pacific fleet possessed most of its Air Corps, it largely opted to commit to the protection of human interests along the West coast, and pledged itself either to the nation of Pacifica or to the California Republic (Hollywood). A small section of the Pacific fleet remained responsive to Washington, and was tasked with attempting to secure the key asset of the Panama Canal, which Washington naively hoped would prove vital to reunifying the continent—though ultimately, the rise of air shipping would diminish the canal's value.

Throughout 1930 and 1931, the U.S. Army suffered from large-scale desertions as soldiers had to decide whether to remain loyal or go home to join their state's cause of independence. Given the state of political and cultural affairs at the time, many chose the latter, and by late 1931 much of what remained of the Army was centered around the capital of D.C. The Air Corps remained in greater numbers, and was put to work quelling uprisings in the midwest, often against former compatriots. Eventually, the federal government suffered a defeat of the Army's air corps at the hands of the newly-formed People's Collective. At this point, President Calvin Coolidge decided that preventing distant states from seceding was a lost cause, and so a policy of "conserving the homeland" was adopted.

A New (Old) Nation

Columbia maintains its identity as the successor state to the United States of America, and as such it continues to operate under an amended form of the original U.S. Constitution. In current practice, however, the nation is under a form of martial law, with strong powers being reserved for the President through an Emergency Powers Act. The act was passed by a greatly diminished Congress, which during the crisis of 1929 watched as representatives from former states were recalled or withdrew. By early 1931, few of the 71st Congress remained in their offices and there was little hope of mustering a 72nd. Congress's last act was to ratify the Constitution of 1931, and special elections were held for a new Congress.

Despite the declaration of martial law, Columbia has maintained a laissez-faire approach to domestic policing, preserving its neutrality while enabling the underworld to thrive. Many pirate gangs operate from Columbia, using it as a base of operations and a source of equipment, a situation that exposes the nation to international criticism. Nonetheless, the government remains focused on maintaining the nation's borders and managing its external relations.

In the fall of 1931, the First Columbian Congress was seated in Washington, comprised of representatives from smaller, county-based regions resulting from the merger of D.C., Maryland, Delaware, and parts of Virginia. The President's broad reach granted in the Emergency Powers Act was reaffirmed. In early 1932, President Coolidge formally declared the Federal Republic of Columbia, and vowed to run in the formal elections to be held in November of the same year.

Despite the referendum of 1936 that dropped Columbia's claim to rule the United States, the nation continues to be viewed with suspicion by many other North American states who often attribute Unionist terrorist actions to the Columbian government. The Unionist movement is indeed active in Columbia but targets both the federal government and the League of Nations for their perceived roles in the collapse of the USA.

Though history would prove Coolidge's actions as President to have been vital to maintaining Columbia's existence during the collapse, the public largely saw him as the architect of the fall of the United States. Maryland governor Albert Richie, known for his strong stance in favor of states' rights and in opposition to Prohibition, became Columbia's first elected President in the 1932 election.



The fall of the U.S. destroyed Columbia's economy, which was heavily dependent on federal incomes. The years immediately after the collapse were harsh, and the nation's effective bankruptcy played a major role in Coolidge's decision to reform the lands under his control as Columbia. In this reformed landscape, one of the notable success stories is the Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing Corporation, based in Hagerstown, Maryland.

Originally founded in 1925 as Fairchild Aerial Surveys by Sherman Fairchild, the company initially specialized in the production of aerial maps. However, with the escalating instability and regional conflict, Fairchild leveraged its aviation knowledge to diversify into aircraft manufacturing. Their early designs were a hit with the civilian population, contributing to the company's growth and stability even during the economic uncertainty following the collapse of the United States.

Fairchild’s products, initially intended for civilian use, became frequent targets for pirates and privateers in the post-collapse era. In response, Fairchild started to produce armed versions of its designs. The F4 Bandit fighter came off the production line in 1932, swiftly followed by the Corsair and the Brigand.

Over the past five years, the company has positioned itself not just as a major employer within Columbia, but also a significant economic driver. This is not least due to Fairchild's practice of offering value-added incentives for various groups to purchase its aircraft, making it one of the top ten companies in Columbia. Accusations of fostering air piracy for continued sales have been strenuously denied by the company president, Sherman Fairchild, who instead attributes their success to Fairchild’s policy of neutrality - an echo of Columbia's own standing among the North American nations.

Despite these allegations and competition, Fairchild continues to play a pivotal role in Columbia's economy. Its presence has helped mitigate the economic loss that followed the fall of the U.S., and the demand for its products continues to buoy the economy. This, in conjunction with the burgeoning trade and diplomatic activity, has enabled Columbia to weather the storm of its tumultuous history and carve out a place of relevance on the North American continent.


Columbia, while officially dry, is known to have a thriving underground alcohol economy. The prohibition laws on paper have done little to curb the appetite for liquor among its populace. The irony lies in the fact that Columbia's global stature as a neutral hub for diplomacy and trade inadvertently paves the way for a bustling black market, particularly in alcohol.

A significant portion of the illicit alcohol finds its way into Columbia through diplomatic channels. Protected under the cloak of diplomatic immunity, shipments from other countries and states often carry alcohol hidden amidst official goods. Nearby Appalachia, known for its robust moonshine tradition, is a frequent source. The convoluted topography of the Appalachian region aids in the clandestine production and transportation of spirits, making it a consistent supplier to Columbia's thirsty underground market.

The abuse of diplomatic privileges isn't confined to the local regions. The presence of the League of Nations in Washington makes Columbia an international crossroads, with diplomats from around the world enjoying certain immunities. This privilege has been exploited time and again to bring in alcohol from overseas, further boosting Columbia's black market. European whiskies, Caribbean rums, and even Asian spirits find their way into Columbia's speakeasies, tucked away in crates marked as diplomatic cargo.

In an ironic twist, the prohibition laws, rather than curtailing alcohol consumption, have inadvertently facilitated a lucrative underground economy. A network of bootleggers, smugglers, and speakeasies operate with surprising efficiency, turning Columbia into a clandestine haven for alcohol. This black market industry, while posing its share of social and legal issues, nonetheless contributes significantly to Columbia's economy, adding a unique dimension to its financial resilience amid political turmoil.


Despite upheavals in other sectors, Columbia's agricultural backbone remains resilient, playing a crucial role in the nation's economic structure. Rich farmlands of Maryland and Delaware provide a reliable source of food staples such as corn, soybeans, wheat, and the historically significant crop of tobacco. While these crops ensure a level of self-sufficiency, tobacco also serves as a valuable export commodity, coveted by other North American states and abroad.

Delaware's contribution is further amplified by its robust poultry industry, one of the most productive in North America. This sector, supported by the state's ideal geographical conditions, provides employment and income for many rural Columbians, underpinning the economy. The agricultural abundance stimulates ancillary industries like food processing, packaging, and transportation, fostering growth in the local manufacturing sector. Thus, in the midst of political and economic volatility, Columbia's agricultural economy remains a steady pillar, showcasing the adaptability and resilience of its people and their lands.


Columbia's military, inherited from the remnants of the old United States forces, serves as the nation's police force, army, and border guards, maintaining a constant vigil over the borders, with a focus on the Maryland "handle" around Cumberland and the contested Chesapeake Peninsula. Playing a vital role in safeguarding the nation's sovereignty and maintaining stability, the military comprises the Army, Navy, and various local militias, facing unique challenges as it strives to protect borders and preserve the spirit of the former United States.

Columbian Navy

In this context, the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, now under the Columbian flag, is indispensable. This institution continues to mold future officers and technicians to bolster the nation's defensive capabilities. The Naval Academy's training extends beyond traditional seafaring roles, adapting to the evolving needs of a nation adjusting to its new geopolitical reality.

A critical facet of Columbia's defense strategy is its navy, combining both inherited U.S. vessels and innovative designs. Columbia's surface fleet, while smaller than its predecessor, remains a formidable maritime force. However, it's the Naval Air Service that sets Columbia apart.

Capitalizing on the U.S. Navy's rigid airship program of the 1920s and 1930s, Columbia has integrated these aerial leviathans into its defensive fabric. Host to the renowned 9th Columbia Air Militia, the airship George Washington epitomizes this innovative strategy. It has gained fame through a series of successful operations against Chesapeake-based pirates, a testament to the effective repurposing of these airships.

Fairchild Corporation, a significant part of Columbia's economy, often services and upgrades these airships and other aviation technologies. This symbiotic relationship between the military and industry sectors demonstrates Columbia's ability to adapt in the face of adversity.

As a remnant of a fallen superpower, Columbia has endured numerous challenges. Yet, it stands as a beacon of stability and neutrality in the new North America. It has found a unique role as a diplomatic meeting place and bustling trade hub, serving not only the nations of North America but also the world at large.

Canal Zone

In addition to domestic responsibilities, Columbia bears the significant burden of maintaining control over former US territories, including the Panama Canal Zone. While these territories serve as a symbolic reminder to the nation and the world that the United States is not completely extinct, they also strain Columbia's military resources. The defense of the Panama Canal Zone, in particular, presents unique challenges that require substantial commitment and strategic planning.

The Panama Canal, once a vital lifeline for global trade, continues to hold strategic importance in the new world order. Its control allows Columbia to exert influence over international maritime trade routes and maintain a foothold in global affairs. However, the responsibility of safeguarding this valuable asset places additional strain on Columbia's military capabilities.

Despite the challenges posed by these territories, Columbia remains steadfast in its commitment to preserving the remnants of the United States. The Panama Canal Zone, along with other former US territories under Columbian control, stands as a symbol of resilience, a reminder that the spirit of the United States endures.


Columbia is a diverse nation with a rich tapestry of ethnicities and cultures. Its population represents a fusion of various groups that have contributed to the vibrant fabric of the nation. African Americans form a significant portion of the population, particularly concentrated in urban centers such as Baltimore and Washington. Their historical presence and contributions have played a crucial role in shaping the identity and culture of Columbia. Alongside African Americans, there are sizable communities of White Americans, including those of English, Irish, German, Italian, Polish, and Scottish descent, each bringing their own traditions and heritage to the nation.

Columbia also retains a connection to its indigenous roots, with Native American communities such as the Piscataway, Nanticoke, and Pocomoke representing the original inhabitants of the land. While their numbers have diminished over time, these communities preserve and celebrate the indigenous heritage of Columbia. Additionally, the former United States was long a destination for immigrants from around the world, contributing to its multicultural character. European immigrants, including Greeks, Russians, Ukrainians, and individuals from Eastern European nations, have brought their languages, traditions, and customs, further enriching the diverse fabric of Columbia.


Columbia's infrastructure underwent significant changes in the aftermath of the collapse of the United States, reshaping the nation's transportation landscape. While the highway system suffered from neglect and disrepair, it still played a crucial role as local arteries within cities and counties. However, long-distance road travel faced challenges in the fragmented post-collapse era, particularly in more remote regions such as the panhandle and the Chesapeake Peninsula. Much like the rest of the new North American nations, aircraft and airships emerged as alternative modes of transportation to transport cargo and passengers between Columbia, its new neighbors, and the world at large.

The railway system, deeply ingrained in Columbia's history, remained a vital backbone of the transportation network. Trains continued to serve as the primary mode of freight transport, efficiently moving goods across the nation. The extensive rail network played a pivotal role in connecting industrial centers and agricultural regions, supporting Columbia's economic growth.

Along the Atlantic coastline, Columbia's maritime infrastructure maintained its importance for trade and commerce. Ports and harbors, including those in Baltimore and along the Chesapeake Bay, served as crucial gateways for international and domestic shipping. Maritime transportation retained its significance, facilitating the movement of goods and contributing to Columbia's economic prosperity.

In this post-collapse era, Columbia's transportation infrastructure exhibited a blend of traditional and innovative modes of travel. While trains remained the backbone of long-distance freight transport, large zeppelins emerged as a transformative force in passenger travel, bridging the gaps between major cities and remote areas. The maritime infrastructure, with its ports and harbors, remained essential for trade and connectivity, supporting Columbia's economy and strengthening its position in the post-collapse world.

Espionage and Clandestine Activity

Columbia's role as the host to the League of Nations and its aspirations for reunification have made it a hotbed of espionage and clandestine activity. The nation adopts a laissez-faire attitude toward espionage, selectively engaging in counterespionage efforts against neighboring nations while doing nothing to counter the spy activites those nations commit against each other while on Columbian territory. This stems from Columbia's neutral political position, though that is generally seen as hypocritical by other North American nations.

The primary targets of espionage against Columbia are the political circles and diplomatic enclaves of Washington, where rival nations seek to manipulate political affairs and influence decision-making processes at the League of Nations. The perceived double standard in Columbia's counterespionage efforts fuels tensions among other post-American nations, exacerbating suspicions that Columbia is up to no good as far as reunification ambitions go.

In addition to external threats, Columbia faces an internal challenge in the form of the Unionist movement. The Unionists, suspicious of Columbia's involvement in the collapse of the United States, carry out attacks targeting the Columbian government and the League of Nations. Columbian authorities' lax attitude toward counterespionage ends here, with frequent and dedicated effort made toward countering Unionist activities throughout the country.

The repercussions of espionage and clandestine activity in Columbia are complex and multifaceted. Tensions between Columbia and other North American nations are fueled by suspicions, accusations, and negative perceptions. Columbia's government must constantly navigate a delicate diplomatic landscape, and this shapes the nation's policies and actions concerning the North American community.

Canon Overview (from CrimsonSkies.com):

Guilt by association is a recurring nightmare for neutral Columbia, which dreams of someday putting the fractured United States of America back together again. Unfairly accused of collaborating with every act of terror committed by the Unionist movement, Columbia always loses what political headway it gains between atrocities. (In fact, Columbia has itself been the target of Unionist attacks.)

Recently, after Columbia's failure to rout Hell's Henchmen from the mountains surrounding Piedmont, the Empire State crossed the border and destroyed the pirate haven. When Piedmont authorities broadcast mild threats in response to the uninvited assistance, one Broadway Bomber (whose name remains undisclosed) peeled off and took out Piedmont's aerodrome communications tower.

Columbia serves as neutral ground, the inter-American meeting house for the squabbling nation-states, and to a lesser extent other nations from Europe and abroad. The League of Nations, headquartered in Washington, has representatives from virtually all of the North American countries (as well as delegates from around the globe). These nations maintain embassies in Columbia (notably in Washington), making the city a chaotic potpourri of cultures.

The inflow of monies from other nations provides a large slice of Columbia's economy. Unfortunately, this neutrality makes Columbia the espionage and shady-deal capital of the continent, with American and European radicals and political refugees of every stripe flocking to the city.

Columbia is a nation of contrasts: a home to nationalists in a shattered nation; the former symbol of democracy, held under a state of low-grade martial law; a "dry" state, filled with ambassadors and dignitaries that routinely ignore the law.

After Columbia became an independent nation in 1932, President Calvin Coolidge declared a state of emergency. The remaining military personnel of the former United States Army act as local police, border guards, and defense force. This has little impact on the life of the average Columbia citizen; the military is far too busy protecting the country’s borders from outside aggression to do more than token policing of the general populace.

Perhaps the greatest irony of life in Columbia is its stance on Prohibition. The banning of alcohol can arguably be termed one of the leading causes of the United States’ breakup. Coolidge maintained the policy after assuming control; despite this, there is a thriving social culture in Washington itself, where diplomats and dignitaries—with immunity from prosecution—host lavish gatherings, where alcohol is in copious supply.

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Creative Notes:

My version of Columbia is slightly different from canon, if only out of bias. I just don't buy that the U.S. government, even a collapsing one, would fail to secure territory surrounding the District of Columbia. In my version of things, half of Virginia is part of Columbia as well. Seeing as the Outer Banks depends largely on Dixie for defense, I figure the northern border in Virginia wasn't particularly well-defended, what with everyone busy with seceding and all that hoo-ha, and so the retreating remnants of the U.S. military closed ranks around the District.

The flag is also different from canon: the yellow & black checker pattern would of course be derived from Maryland's flag, so I just made it look more like that. Someday, hopefully, I'll finally understand why the heck they chose to use a hippocamp as the emblem.