Report On The Esoteric State Of Appalachia


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Purpose: To Provide an accurate assessment of the Esoteric State of Appalachia as to guide the Authority's regional strategy.
Author(s): Agent O'Neil
Commissioned By: NORTH/3 Regional Director Mitchell Collins
To: Global Directorate, ACI DEP-036
Date: 16/04/2023

Prelude - A Short History:

Often called the "secret 51st state," the Esoteric State of Appalachia or Appalachia is a Paranatural Enclave found on the East Coast of the United States of America. Its standing is purposely poorly defined under American law, but it has the power most comparable to that of an unincorporated federal territory with a Commonwealth status.


The Great Seal of the Esoteric State of Appalachia.

Appalachia was established during the Reconstruction Era (1865–1877) following the end of the American Civil War. During the conflict, many Native Americans chose to side with the Confederate government for various reasons ranging from animosity towards Washington to their own economic interest in the continuation of slavery. Amongst them were the Five Civilized tribes1 who provided military aid to the Confederacy.

When the war began turning against the South, many Confederates began to turn to increasingly anomalous means, including the use of anomalous artefacts and ritualistic retaliations by tribal occult practitioners directed at the Union government, fearing repercussions for siding with the South. While counter-ritualistic actions were attempted, the experts serving as advisors to Washington had a poor understanding of the Native American styles of thaumaturgy, making them widely ineffective.

Against this backdrop, the eastern Algonquian peoples were commissioned to aid the Union government. In exchange, President Abraham Lincoln issued an executive order for the "establishment of a self-governing body within the confines of the Appalachian highlands." Granting "terms of home rule, protection against Christianization," and becoming a reserve for Native American styles of thaumaturgy at a time when a unified system was being established across America and Europe.

With Governor Jonathan Worth overseeing its settlement, the borders of Appalachia evolved over time under a series of negotiations and exchanges with the federal government, opening up many territories in the form of National Parks, Wildernesses, and Game lands. In the following decades, the Esoteric State became a haven for anomalies related to the Native American mythos. Those within its bounds were protected from the "cryptid hunts" — a popular pastime amongst the American elites in the 18th and 19th centuries. This changed when said hunts became legalized in 1929 for economic reasons.


36th US President Lyndon B. Johnson meeting with Appalachian representatives.

For the federal government, it was also an asymmetric containment solution at a time when it had very poorly developed anomalous agencies, and when the majority of containment efforts were managed by private contractors and independent groups.

In 1965, under the Appalachian Regional Development Act,2 the state was given further autonomy. This was seen as compensation for its lack of proper representation for which it began pushing amidst the backdrop of the nationalist movement of the Cold War.3

Current State of the Esoteric State of Appalachia:


A map of the Esoteric State of Appalachia.

The Esoteric State of Appalachia is comprised of multiple discontinuous territories stretching across four states, the largest of which are situated in the Great Smoky Mountains. Elected members from its many settled communities form a 30-member executive council, which is seated in Asheville, NC.

Assimilation into much of the local National Parks and Forest Service has granted Appalachia greater control over its own law enforcement, consolidating into a parallel agency — the Combined Appalachian Protection Office, responsible for maintaining law and order, and the handling of Wendigo executions under the discretion of the Sheriff.4

Strictly speaking, the ESA remains relatively impoverished. An insignificant domestic industry as the result of federal restrictions on surface structures5 have limited its options for revenue, making the state heavily subsistent on federal aid over their expenditures6 and food subsidies to accommodate the inhabitants. The lack of adequate medical treatment facilities have also led to a rise of chronic viral outbreaks, becoming the largest contributing factor to Appalachia's mortality rate.

In spite of its struggles, for all intents and purposes, the Appalachia experiment seems to have worked. Its nature as a “pseudo-sink" can be attested to by the reduction of anomalous activities in all nearby states. Consequently, the Esoteric State provides a safe refuge for anomalous individuals from across the United States who, along with other unveiled personnel, make up a sizable portion of the territory's demographics.

The traditional practice of Wendigo executions has since evolved into a lucrative market of safari-style big-game hunts opened to the high society. Considering its sources of revenue, tourism from Unveiled individuals thus makes up the majority at around 28% of the GDP. Alongside visiting sites of spiritual importance to the Native American religious groups, the hunting of Wendigos and other Appalachian critters is a popular tourist activity.

The Wendigo7 which the local government sanctions to be killed in such hunts are selected based on their sapience,8 aggressiveness, and fertility. Handling of the trophies for transport is done on-site and follows all UNAAC regulations. While there was a pushback from both the USOC9 and RPC Authority against permitting the Wendigo Hunts to continue, the state's economy is reliant on it. As such, there is no considerable push in the regional government for policing it.

Thanks to those loose regulations, Appalachia also became a hotspot for Unveiled bounty hunters, mercenaries, and private military contractors. Notably, Demonymless10 marketeers are known to frequent Appalachia as a safe harbor from authorities. Though the need for them has drastically decreased ever since the organized anomalous agencies became the norm, they nonetheless remain in the region as closely-knit communities. A list of screened contracts and their rates has been forwarded to the Board.

In a similar vein, the state boasts an underground economy of anomalous artefacts. Just as with the hunts, the state does not take the initiative in regulating the black markets. Family relics are commonly traded for cash, especially amongst the newer generations of Appalachians who wish to abandon their religious duties and move to places with better economic prospects.

Preliminary findings suggest that the sellers in such markets may have connections to the underground bazaars of Camelot.11 As such, infiltrating the seller groups and their front companies provides more long-term benefits for the ACI than attempting to strongarm them into closing down.


Occultum Energy Aetherometer (OEA) reading from 29/03/2023. Note the various unnatural spikes throughout the day.

There are rumours of the JTFOs12 using the Appalachia highlands to test anomalous weaponry, but it is yet to be confirmed by ACI; unusual readings can be chalked up to the region's status as an anomalous hub. Any empirical findings will be used as leverage against the United States government.

The case of the Black Mountain atmospheric thaumaturgical spike is an ongoing matter.

Authority Involvement:


RPC-996 in Pocahontas County before Authority acquisition.

Authority diplomatic efforts towards the Esoteric State began in earnest during the 1960s. Various outposts were erected to monitor the development of Appalachia over the years.

The Authority contributes significantly to the domestic economy of Appalachia, having been involved with several high-value purchases of anomalous phenomena in exchange for generous donations to the Appalachian Council. The Engineering Component also aided the construction of more subterranean facilities as part of an effort to transition into a "burrower-style" underground settlement.

These initiatives greatly endeared the local populace towards the Authority and its operations, allowing the establishment of an embassy — OL-Site-AP/4 — within the territories of Appalachia at Woolly Top.

Appalachia's status as one of the few remaining practice grounds for Native American style thaumaturgy continues to intrigue researchers of the Congregance. Many advocates continue to petition for greater Authority involvement with the state beyond a practical level of anomalous containment. From the 1990s onwards, an influx of old families with ties to the Authority began to immigrate to Appalachia.

Authority Central Intelligence Actions:

OESA13's dominance over the region makes any covert actions difficult. Nonetheless, Site-079 proves to be a capable forward operating base and a site for potential dispatch. Additional funds are being covertly forwarded to the Site's ACI liaison in order to facilitate intelligence efforts.

Despite being given the right to select its own anomalous agency, a strong sense of patriotism combined with apathy towards the status quo resulted in the guarantee of continuing USOC supremacy. This being the case, the tension between the federal government and the Appalachian Council has been building due to a lack of transparency about which anomalies are exported out of and imported into the region. As such, items of spiritual importance and potential economic value have been removed while anomalies requiring expensive containment methods were dumped onto the state.

In order to drive a wedge between the Appalachian government and Washington, ACI has proposed a scheme to promote the concept of Appalachian identity as being completely separate from the American one. As the state has a high population of Native Americans, this is seen as a possibility. Of course, full independence is unlikely and prone to cause more trouble in the long term, but this distrust towards the federal government could result in the leaders seeking further support from the RPC Authority as a meaningful alternative.

As mentioned in the section above, the mass migration of young Appalachians is a consistent issue. Many of the rituals performed by families, while themselves having little impact, could snowball into Veil-shattering events. As such, members of the Congregance — especially those specializing in East-American styles of Totemist/Shamanist thaumaturgy — are sent as a replacement. Here, integration into the local communities proves to be an issue, as there is a consistent belief that the Authority agents are performing all the theological rituals without cultural appreciation. This is seen as a minimal concern.

Authority Central Intelligence Actions:

In regards to the above-mentioned series of events, we recommend:

  1. The Authority infiltrate the black markets and continue its work to monitor sellers and secure items of importance.
  2. The Authority continue maintaining a watchlist of all Appalachian migrants.
  3. The Authority cooperate with organizations and fronts to provide greater job opportunities in Appalachia.
  4. The Authority allocate additional funding to expand Site-079 operations in Appalachia.
  5. The Authority create better screening methods for all personnel assigned to Site-079.
  6. The Authority promote Appalachian value so as to encourage continuing family religious duties and discourage migration.
  7. The Authority promote Appalachian identity as being separate from American one.
  8. The Authority discredit the USOC while promoting itself as an alternative.
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