Had you been a visitor in Carrot City 150 years ago, youâd never have imagined that itâd one day become one of the five largest cities in the country. When the industrial revolution forced the farming towns of Louistown and Westville to combine, the newly elected mayor, Bundy Cottontail noticed the abundance of red brick buildings in both cities and jokingly suggested that the townâs new name would be Carrot City.
The name stuck and soon the city was flooded with hopeful immigrants looking for work in the newly opened industries. The economy was booming, but the standard of education was lacking. There was tremendous public support of the idea to make Carrot City number one in education. Stability and Standards was the buzzwords, which lead to the development of several elevator schools as well as the International Ophistokontian University, currently ranking number 14 in The National Standard for Education.
The general Zeitgeist was that of hope and progress. There was this sense that âwe can do everything if we only tryâŁ going on the entire wait until the First World War struck. The propaganda machine ran overtime in Carrot City and a lot of brave and hopeful soldier was shipped out in battle and left a lot of shattered families behind them. The outlet for many was art and plenty of fringe artistic minds found their place in the more bohemian quarters like Saffron Park.
After the war a lot of old industries closed down and the economy turned more to stock market trade and service companies. When the depression hit, Carrot City was struck especially hard, the unemployment rate skyrocketed to among the worst in history. A lot of people lost their jobs and homes. Homeless had previously been mostly criminalized, but as the number of homeless increased, it was clear that a different approach was needed. Several soup kitchens opened, as well as four coffin houses. Of these the Friendly Heart shelter, operated by the Salvation Army, is still around today.
At the time of the Second World War, the economy started to recover due to an economic policy inspired by the âNew DealâŁ policy. The politicians of the time spoke a lot about ânational heroismâŁ and the courage of âgoing to warâŁ, but the public was a bit less receptive this time around.
The tension of the war and aftereffects of the depression was still noticeable and was reflected culturally by an abundance of Jazz Club and movie theaters where people could forget all their troubles in the latest Science Fiction or Film Noir movie, or drown their sorrows to the tune of some skillfully played blues.
When the 50âs came along with its new inventions and brand new style of music, the youth of the time quickly latched on to the latest rock âśn roll trends. When the immigration policy was relaxed, the city enjoyed a new economic upswing, but the infrastructure had a hard time catching up. Most of the East Side district, and especially Skid Row was hastily built during that time to provide inexpensive housing for newly arrived or poor residents.
But if we look around today, what do we see? For most people itâs a decent place to live, even if itâs common to find yourself short on cash at the end of the month. Unemployment rates are on the rise and university dropout rates are the second highest in the country. Itâs terribly easy to slip through the cracks, even at a young age.
Lets follow the Main Avenue, along the rows of cherry trees, past the children skateboarding in and around a dried up fountain, to the Downtown business district swarming with young and old, cats and dogs, bunnies and squirrels, and several other species of animals. Some of the original small town mentality is still present among the people, as well as the old dreams and the spirit of a desperate city trough the Great Depression. Itâs not the easiest place to live, but if you got dreams and the heart of a hard worker, you can make all those dreams come true.
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