So he issued a proclamation: everyone in the Kingdom who is found guilty of theft, robbery, banditry, rape, murder, etc. has a choice to either serve out the sentence as usual or indenture himself to the Crown for a period of time dependent on the crime. Those who choose the latter are shipped to Queen's Landing.
|Needs more snow|
Queen's Landing is ruled by Lord Marchand (whose family rebelled against the King around two hundred years ago) whose primary concern is to keep the salt flowing. While it is mostly populated by men who have finished their terms of service (indentured servants are kept in communal barracks), some have brought their families with them. Anyone can come to Queen's Landing if he wishes, and volunteers will even be paid a resettlement fee by the Crown, so the town does boast a small but non-negligible number of women and children, many of the former doing a brisk business in the town's whorehouses. The free population of Queen's Landing fluctuates around five hundred souls, with another five to eight hundred slaves attached to the mines.
Queen's Landing is situated at the mouth of Robbers' Bay at the base of the Spine of the World, which makes it the northern-most known dwelling of civilized men by far. The land stretches away to the north and west, remaining rugged and mountainous for as far as surveys have seen. Conifer forests are the rule, at least near the town: what the geography and flora are like further into the wastes none can say.
The town is walled all round with a stout timber pallisade and permanently garrisoned by fifty men of the King's Army under command of the Governor. This is in part to guard against an uprising at the salt mines, and in part simple prudence. For those caught in misdeeds in the town justice is swift and summary: another term in the mines, or exile. No doubt most of those exiled die, but it is just possible that some do survive.
The residents of Queen's Landing subsist mostly on hunting, trapping, and fishing. The growing season is too short for most crops, being only two-and-a-half months, though in lucky years crops of potatoes and sometimes rye can come in. Just recently, experiments with herding the local wildlife have been undertaken, adding butter and caribou meat to the staples of the colony. Very occasionally the hardy fishermen manage to snag a whale: these creatures are often seen cavorting in the Bay, and are prized for their blubber, which makes excellent oil.
Queen's Landing imports much more than just labor: because of its situation it will be dependent upon the Kingdom of Albilonia for basic foodstuffs like wheat and almost all finished products for the foreseeable future. Most trade is done in salt, which is also the primary export. Others are obvious from the above: furs, fish, timber, and precious stones (more on this last below).