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Earth-That-Was (Latin: Terra) was the original home of all humans. A series of events led to the mass exodus of Earth's population. The Earth fleet left Earth founding a new civilization in a new star system. Many of the facts about "Earth-That-Was" have been lost to the pages of history.
Authentic Earth artifacts are prized collector’s items and are extremely valuable. Durran Haymer had a collection of ancient artifacts from "Earth-That-Was". Adelai Niska also had an original Tiffany lamp.
In the Return to Earth-That-Was arc of the comics, Serenity flies through a portal and lands on Earth. The planet is shown to be habitable again, though the crew was attacked by hostile humanoid creatures and later by giant killer robots. Wash bot led the crew to Washburne Industries headquarters, the regional headquarters of the appliance manufacturing firm run by Wash's ancestors. There were also humans living on Earth, and they were initially distrustful of the crew due to having problems with scavengers stealing their stuff.
"When she was born she had no sky. She was open, inviting, and the stars would rush into her, through the skin of her, making the oceans boil with sensation. When she could endure no more ecstasy, she puffed up her cheeks and blew out the sky." —An oral tradition of Saffron’s people