The Second Life Wikia’s entry on Slate has (in part) this to say about the region’s earliest days:
The great thing about Slate in those days was the total lack of commercialism. Each person [who] had land in Slate was there just to have a house; not only that, but a “natural” looking house. Many folks had treehouses (Ananda Sandgrain, for one, as well as Ezhar Fairlight’s perpetually unfinished megatree), log cabins (Bob Bunderfeld’s amazing log cabin house that took up hundreds of prims), and other wood-and-stone constructions. As a newbie, Lordfly [Digeridoo] tried conforming to the unwritten “rules” of the sim by building a wooden home. The theme was bent a bit as he constructed a physical trebuchet on top of it (free rides for anyone who wanted it :)
Lordfly (whose tower we saw in Tan) wrote most of that entry, by the way… We have also seen Bob Bunderfeld’s name come up before, in Kissling: he owned “Builders Choice”, a texture store, which he closed and moved to InWorldz. I’m acquainted with him there, and solicited his reminiscences of early Slate; sadly, Bob’s RL takes priority, as it should.
Eventually, most of the old folks moved out and a new bunch of people came in… the river valley is still there, though.
Slate, even more so than its southern neighbor Teal, is Jopsy Pendragon country now, and a big chunk of that river is covered over by a rectangular megaprim roof containing a cavern, through which protrudes Jopsy’s tribute to the classic Henson film The Dark Crystal.
(I can think of a particular line of dragon avatars which resemble Skeksis well enough… they should use the place as a hangout.)
The oldest builds I could discover in Slate are all Jopsy’s work. These are oldest of all (March 1, 2004), and are in the cavern:
Second oldest (March 31, 2004) is this oil derrick, on a plateau outside the cavern:
A month later, Jopsy build this observatory on the cliff across the river from the cavern, near the northern edge of the sim (you may recognize the exterior texture from a photo above):
Unfortunately, it’s only a shell. The tube of the “telescope” doesn’t even continue into the space (no real telescope protrudes beyond its sheltering dome, anyway).
Jopsy seems to be quite fond of the Italian Renaissance. Fourth oldest in the sim (June 2004) is this bridge to and from nowhere, on the eastern edge of the sim, in the style of Venice:
The sky above is home to Jopsy’s Vehicle Laboratory, which is intended to complement the Particle Lab in Teal. I cannot say if an older version has existed in years past, but the current one (in the upper left of the overview) is still under construction. Most of it reveals creation dates in 2009, but there is some indication that is it not an abandoned project. This, for example, was built in March of this year — aficionados of M.C. Escher will immediately recognize the inspiration:
It is heartening to think that Jopsy will complete the Vehicle Lab. As successful as he has been in bringing “particle physics” to a level that can be learned by anyone, the Vehicle Lab, when complete, will become another font of knowledge for aspiring creators.
Two regions remain: Darkwood and Gibson. Their entries will be posted during the Thanksgiving holiday, and then “Seconderth” — appropriately — will be history.