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The State of Gaoling[1] is an autonomous, self-governing territory that encompasses a large region in the southern Earth Kingdom. Its capital is the town of Gaoling. The state achieved de facto independence after 171 AG and was chosen as the first Earth Kingdom territory to hold democratic elections three years later.[1]


Gaoling reeducation camp

The Earth Empire reeducation camp in the State of Gaoling served as a base for Commander Guan.

When Earth Queen Hou-Ting was killed by the Red Lotus in 171 AG, the Earth Kingdom fractured into several independent states, one of which was centered at Gaoling.[1] Sometime before 174 AG, Gaoling was annexed by Kuvira and became part of her self-declared Earth Empire.[2] She subsequently set up a reeducation camp in the State of Gaoling, under the supervision of Commander Guan and Doctor Sheng, to rehabilitate unreliable soldiers and turn them into troops fit to serve the Earth Empire.[1] Kuvira surrendered following her failed attempt to annex the United Republic of Nations in 174 AG,[3] and subsequently ordered all of her troops to stand down. Commander Guan refused to lay down arms and decided to use his forces at Gaoling to eventually restore the Earth Empire. As the Earth Kingdom military remained weak, it was unable to force Guan into compliance. Nevertheless, the Earth Empire loyalists refrained from resuming hostilities, allowing Gaoling's former leaders, Chief Magistrates Ling and Bak, to regain power in the state.

Following King Wu's decision to abolish the Earth Kingdom monarchy, Gaoling was selected as the first location to hold elections to appoint new leaders of the independent states. Ling and Bak were the first to announce their candidacy for the governorship of Gaoling, representing the old order, while Commander Guan also entered the election as a representative of those wishing to restore the Earth Empire.[1]

Fearing that Guan would be elected over the uninspiring Ling and Bak, Avatar Korra and King Wu traveled to the Foggy Swamp and returned with Gaoling's most famous daughter, Toph Beifong, who officially entered the gubernatorial elections. However, when the extent of Guan and Doctor Sheng's brainwashing became apparent, Wu instead determined to cancel the election in Gaoling. However, before the plan could be executed, Team Avatar was confronted by Guan's army outside the city and Wu was kidnapped during the ensuing battle.[4] After being brainwashed by Sheng, Wu returned to Gaoling to expedite the elections, which resulted in a landslide victory for Guan. That night, Guan was confronted by Kuvira, Korra, Toph, Suyin Beifong, Asami Sato, and Opal, forcing the governor to surrender. After the brainwashing was undone, King Wu announced that the elections would be rescheduled, going forward with a new timetable that reflected according to the wishes of each state's citizens.[5]



The eponymous capital of Gaoling state is located in a mountainous valley.[1]

Earth Empire reeducation camp[]

See also: Earth Empire reeducation camps

The reeducation camp was set up in the mountains close to Gaoling town. Protected by a metal wall, it hosts barracks, laboratories, and training grounds.[1]