The city of Boston is one of the handful of places in the world that survived the Dark Time with their previous government intact, with the Mayor of the city as the head of the city-states government. The higher level of learning, devout catholic population and the survival of several dangerous events have led to the city being nicknamed ‘The Blessed City.’
In the last days of the United States, hundreds of thousands of Catholics made their way to Boston. The population surge led city leaders to attempt to hold the region together, but ultimately proved a detriment as the already fragile infrastructure crumbled. Famine and disease ran rampant, reducing the bloated population by more than three quarters before leveling off.
When the violence of the fall subsided, Boston established itself as a city state that influenced survivors over hundreds of square miles. But the leaders, both political and church, refused to begin campaigns of conquest. Instead, they began programs of rebuilding communities around them, removing threats through military action only as a last resort.
New England responded well to the stability Boston offered. By the end of the 22nd Century a dozen city-states existed alongside Boston. The remains of New York city proved to be a source of constant problems, and Bostonian troops led interventions there six times prior to the 2367 Treaty of Kip’s Bay ended the threat.
Boston also took an early lead in the fight against the naval pirates of the Atlantic seaboard. The campaign lasted for decades, as success against pirates increased trade which increased piracy. The final success came with the arrival of the Quebecois Royal Navy and their war frigates.
With threats eliminated, Boston became a city of culture and learning, and enjoyed that position for almost a century, until the Imperial Commonwealth came.
Boston joined the Lexington Organization in protecting Atlantic America. When Quebec defected and the war itself started, Boston found itself under threat. Its position made it ideal for Organization use against the Quebecois and the Commonwealth, but also made it a prime target. The city would suffer numerous air raids and bombardments throughout the war. When the northern line crumbled, Boston surrendered quickly, knowing its position was untenable.
Of all the city-states that fought against the Imperial Commonwealth, Boston was one of three that was not folded into a successor kingdom.
This was a surprise to many, who felt that Boston’s part of the war effort was more than enough to warrant occupation by the Commonwealth and annexation by either the Atlantic Dominion or the Quebecois. However, Boston survived, the political institutions largely untouched.
Why this happened is unknown. Rumors of back room deals, letters from the Pope in Rome, or payoffs abound. Conspiracy theorists have numerous theories, most more impractical than the rest.
Boston retained its catholic culture well past the Dark Age. The Catholic Church had planned ahead in case of such an eventuality, and Boston was one of the few areas where their plans worked well.
Over the centuries Bostonian Catholicism, as it became known, emphasized the relationship of an individual to their community.
It asks Catholics to be good neighbors and good members of their community. The lesson of the fall of civilization was to not get distracted by greater things, but to always keep yourself rooted in your local population. Every ill and sin is the concern of the local community.
Of the various cultures of Catholicism that exist in Atlantic America, Bostonian Catholicism is the most widespread. It avoided the nationalistic rhetoric of others forms that arose in Atlantic America, and maintained an easily confirmed Apostolic succession.