Prior to the Civil War there was little in the Salt River and Gila River Valleys to attract the attention of the few hardy Kindred souls willing to leave the established cities of the East Coast, and so it remained the province of the Native Americans and the werewolves that sometimes lurked among them. In the decades following the Civil War, many civilians and veterans headed West to try and start a new life away from the ruins of the old, resulting in townships and settlements springing up throughout the area that would eventually give rise to the modern Phoenix metropolitan sprawl. This allowed transient Kindred to use the area as something of a way station, but the number of inhabitants was still too low to support a permanent local population of Kindred. The city of Phoenix itself was incorporated in 1881 with a population of 2,500 individuals. The arrival of the major railroads in the area in the 1880's helped raise awareness of the small town among the Kindred of North America, yet it remained simply a stop on longer journeys, the population of the city only slightly more than doubling to 5,500 by the turn of the century.
Development began to speed up in the first half of the 20th century, with the first step being the naming of Phoenix as the capital of the newly formed state of Arizona. It still wasn't until late in the Roaring Twenties that the population of the city and the surrounding county grew large enough to support a permanent, if still minuscule, Kindred presence in the area. Slowly but surely the city continued to grow until World War II, when one of the effects of the war effort was to introduce industrialization to the city with a vengeance as it turned to the mass production of military supplies. At the end of the war, the city boasted a population of 65,000, with the surrounding towns and cities bringing the count for Maricopa County as a whole close to a quarter million. The postwar boom saw the population nearly double again, as well as further industrial growth and political prominence for the city, finally laying the necessary foundations for a significant Kindred presence.
The Fabulous Fifties
William Locke, an Elder Brujah and pillar of the Camarilla relocates to Phoenix with his two relatively young protégés and childer, James Wilkes and Rutherford Wellington. This move elicits surprise among established Kindred society back East, as Phoenix was thought much too small at the time to draw the attention of a Kindred of significant standing. Rumors abound that Locke is on the run from a jilted lover on the East Coast or some other form of scandal.
The Swingin' Sixties
Locke and his children soon have Phoenix completely under their control. Little happens within the local communities that they are not either aware of or directly responsible for. Under their careful guidance Phoenix's population increases almost six-fold by the end of the decade. At this point Phoenix begins to gain a reputation as an up and coming metropolis, and many Neonates and freshly minted Ancilla looking for opportunity start to see Phoenix as a destination for those looking to make their mark in Kindred society.
The Disco Era
Growth in Phoenix slows as Locke turns his attention from the mortal affairs in the city to the number of Kindred that have moved into the area. He begins to hold court, handing out territory to those he feels are worthy, and assigning positions to help keep everyone in line. His moniker, 'Iron Fist of the Camarilla', proves to be well earned during this time. The mortal populace continues to flourish, but less focus on the Kine allows powerful mortal influences to move into the city. It isn't only Kindred that see Phoenix as an opportune place to set up shop, especially located so near the country's southern border. During this period the Mayor Margaret T. Hance sets the stage for the construction of Terminal 3 at Sky Harbor Airport, converting it into an international air transport hub. The end of the decade was the perfect time to be a new Kindred working to set oneself up in Phoenix. Despite the current boom, dark clouds loom on the horizon as crime rates rise and illegal narcotics both old and new begin to flood the mortal world, becoming increasingly popular among the Kine.
The Decade of Decadence
Sabbat incursions start to become a regular occurrence. Due to the resulting constant distractions, Phoenix's mortal population is not watched as closely as it had been in the past. Locke is frustrated to see the cocaine epidemic ravaging the lower income areas, but as survival necessitates focusing on the Sabbat threat first and foremost, he fumes impotently as not inconsiderable portions of his influence structure fall to addiction. One notable Sabbat strike in 1985 sees the deaths of the Malkavian Keeper of Elysium and a Brujah Deputy Sheriff, and the fact that such a strike could only have been facilitated with inside information fuels Locke's paranoia and suspicion about the loyalty and motivations of the various members of his court.
The Naughty Nineties
The decade sees a steep rise in the instance of Sabbat attacks, infiltration attempts, and incursions into the city by mortal hunters. The Domain's vampiric population continues to grow, bringing new Kindred into the area, but despite this influx the political scene remains stable for the most part. Anarchs and Independent Clans begin arriving in the city and surrounding communities as well. Prince Locke seems unconcerned by the newcomers, stating "Nothing will shake the Ivory Tower. The Independents will know their place, and soon enough the Anarchs will see the error of their ways and join us."
The Lost Decade
Locke announces that he is willing to accept Anarchs as residents of the city. There is a list of rules they must follow, accompanied by an oath of fealty to Locke himself and a promise to bend every effort to the betterment of the city. Locke begins to rely more on his own childer and those Kindred closest to him, often keeping the general Kindred populace of the city in the dark on important matters. This proves to be the final straw for many of the more traditional residents and multiple prominent Kindred leave the city. Sabbat attacks rapidly dwindle in frequency until they cease altogether.
The Silent Nights
In early 2009 Prince Locke issues an edict that no Kindred not already Acknowledged within his city will be granted Hospitality. Those who had left the city earlier in the decade are stripped of their Acknowledgement within Phoenix. Locke becomes ruthless about insuring that the remaining residents of the city do not share information regarding occurances within the city to their clanmates in the wider world beyond. A few rumors escape suggesting that Prince Locke was giving territory to Anarchs, and that he was ruling with an iron fist in defiance of the Justicariat with his childer acting as Sheriff and Scourge. Toward the end of the year the remaining Tremere in the city depart, unwilling to submit to the edict requiring that they sever communication with the rest of their clan.
The dawn of the new year brings initial efforts by the Servires of the region's Archon to investigate the city. They find the local Kindred unwilling to speak to them and are swiftly turned away. Outside influences likewise find no purchase within the domain, and one by one the channels that had previously allowed information to escape to those Kindred outside the city close until Phoenix is enveloped by a curtain of silence. The mortal news bring some worrying insight as it shows problems among the Kine. The news stations paint a picture of a city on edge, their nightly broadcasts rife with images and stories about a serial murderer loose in the city committing ritualistic killings. Over the course of the next few months 13 victims loose their lives, and the killer is never brought to justice.
In the Summer of 2010 a missive emerges from Phoenix inviting a large contingent of Anarchs into the city for a meeting in the early Fall. Intrigued Kindred around the area wait to learn the results of the talks and how the balance of power in the city might be affected, but no news emerges. As the weeks crept buy and absolutely nothing is heard from any of the inhabitants of the city or the Anarchs that travelled there for the conference, various concerns in nearby Domains begin to send in scouts to check the situation in Phoenix. Those scouts find no sign of any active Kindred in the city proper. The main Elysium is untouched by the mortals, the floor covered in piles of ash. Not a single living Kindred from the Ivory Tower, the Movement, or the Rebellion could be located. The news that Phoenix was open for the claiming quickly spread far and wide.
In October 2010, over a month after the disappearance of the previous inhabitants of the city, many of the Kindred who had previously resided in the city had decided to return in order to investigate and possibly carve their own niche in the new power vacuum. Accompanied by Kindred allies recruited for the purpose as well as a few brave souls seeking their fortune, these Kindred return to the city in droves. They are greeted by a missive from one Pierre Durand, a Malkavian Elder, requesting that they gather at the Phoenix Art Museum, a known Elysium of the city prior to the disappearances. During this gathering it was discovered that a contingent of the Followers of Set had weathered whatever happened to the rest of the inhabitants of the city secure in their Temple deep within the bowels of the Mormon Temple in East Mesa. A small group of Giovanni residing in Apache Junction in return for guarding the eastern border of the city likewise was found to be still active. Both groups had declined to attend the scheduled meeting with the Anarchs and pled ignorance of exactly what happened to the rest of the Kindred in the city.
After initial investigation turned up no immediate threats, the Elders among those present discussed the formation of a new court, and after some debate and dickering Julian Marcus Haldane, a Ventrue of House Gaul, stepped forward to claim the Praxis of Phoenix with his contender, one Michael Cristos, a Toreador of House Von Daun, serving as his Seneschal. Additional Kindred interested in the opportunities in Phoenix continued to arrive, and within months the court had been rounded out to include Gage Creed of Clan Gangrel as the Sheriff, Charlotte Farnsworth of Clan Nosferatu as the Harpy, Caralyne Butcher of Clan Ventrue as the Keeper of Elysium, and, though it did not become public knowledge for many years, Simon Woo of Clan Nosferatu as the Scourge. The Primogen Council consisted of Xavier Diamond speaking for Clan Brujah, Elder Rain speaking for Clan Malkavian, Elder Rune Huldason speaking for Clan Nosferatu, Ben Castle speaking for Clan Tremere, Elder Alistair Fitzwilliam Von Daun speaking for Clan Toreador, and Anna Russell speaking for Clan Ventrue.
While the fortunes of some Kindred have risen and those of others have fallen, the transfer of power and responsibility has been reasonably ordered during the Praxis of Prince Haldane. While Sabbat activity is on the rise and the concerns of insuring ample feeding grounds for the Clans in the face of an increasing influx of Kindred reassured by the recent years of stability are more immediate problems, the mystery of exactly what happened to the previous inhabitants of the city is never far from the thoughts of the new court and residents.
2015 and 2016
In late 2015 three members of the Domain of Phoenix raised arms against Prince Haldane. These three Elders, each Architects of the Tower, failed in their attempted Praxis seizure and were slain. Elder Inarius of Clan Tremere, Elder Damaskinos of Clan Malkavia, and Elder Savoye of Clan Brujah were bloodhunted and executed for their actions. In response to the death of her Sire, Prudance Dismas began a campaign against Prince Haldane. This campaign would eventually lead to her own banishment and bloodhunt for attempting to negotiate with resident Lupines to assassinate the Prince.
The unrest of 2015 resulted in many questions among the populace of the City. An influx of Hunters into the city, coupled with the rise of an Infernal Cult created havoc within the Domain. Whispers of dark alliances passed the lips of residents and paranoia rose sharply. Dissatisfied with Haldane's inability to foil the many enemies of the Domain, the Primogen Council met on 8/22/2016 and in a rare show of unity and use of protocol voted unanimously to remove Haldane from his Praxis. The Praxis then fell to Seneschal Garrett Wingate, who ceded the Praxis to Danielle Poniciliet without incident.
Julian Haldane chose not to accept the vote of the Primogen Council and opted for exile.