Saltmarsh Becomes Eureka

I don’t want to run the Ghosts of Saltmarsh parts of my Adventure in a giant city like Waterdeep or Greyhawk, but I think the town as presented in the book is a little on the small side. Also, the source material seems at odds with itself over how big the town is. Is it a place with a population of 2,000 or a place with a population of 5,000? That maps seems to small for either number. So I’ve gone back to the Sanborn Maps I mentioned in my Weaverville post and I found a few I like.

The town of Saltmarsh

The Dungeon Masters Guide says a village is up to 1,000, a town 1,000-6,000, and a city 6,000-25,000 people. I wanted a little more granularity to my map icons, so I went with these numbers.

PopulationSettlement Type
20-80Thorp
80-400Hamlet
400-900Village
900-2,000Small Town
2,000-5,000Large Town
5,000-12,000Small City
12,000-25,000Large City
25,000 +Metropolis
Settlement Size Table

Using these maps and the earlier (1886) population of Eureka (5,900) I end up with a settlement that might technically be a small city, but still behaves like a large town. Or I may downsize the town of Arcata and McKinleyville and use those populations to make Eureka the undisputed big fish on Humboldt Bay. That last is the direction I’m leaning.

Eureka 1886, pop 5,900 (1 of 6 maps)
The town of Eureka, pop. 8,000 1889
Eureka 1892

The 1886 map is one of six that make up the Sanborn map of Eureka. The 1889 map is the key to a set of 20 maps. That’s probably more town than I want to rework, but they’ll make nice references. The last map shows a view of Eureka that fits more in mind with what I imagine the setting of Saltmarsh to look like. The Adventure starts here, but doesn’t get too involved before it departs for Weaverville. So, I have a little time before I need to start working on this mapping project. But this gives you an idea of where we’re headed. Just another peek behind the curtain.

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