The Claatuvac Guild was an organization of Wookiee cartographers, hyperspace scouts and navigators based out of the city of Kachirho on Kashyyyk. Over the centuries, they had mapped and gathered information on a number of hyperspace routes known only to them. The Guild maintained a base in Tree Vikkilynn in Kachirho; a sealed vault contained the guild's navigation data center, powered independently by a generator. The vault included data input and analysis stations as well as data stacks with information stored in indigenous manufactured HoloGrids.
During the Clone Wars, rumors of the Wookiees' knowledge of secret hyperroutes drew the Confederacy of Independent Systems to attack Kashyyyk in 19 BBY in an effort to claim the data. The Galactic Republic counterattacked to protect the Guild's information, but the Guild chose to dissolve itself rather than hand over their data to the new Galactic Empire. The Claatuvac data was distributed to the Guild's most trusted scouts who went into hiding as the Empire subjugated Kashyyyk, and it was not until the Galactic Civil War, nearly twenty years later, that a legitimate source of Claatuvac data came to light in the hands of Chewbacca.
The Claatuvac Guild was responsible for discovering the other bodies of the Kashyyyk system, including Alaris Prime, before the Galactic Republic reached the Mytaranor sector. After Wookiee navigational prowess became known, the Claatuvac routes became the stuff of legend. Most spacers operating in the Mytaranor sector claimed to know of at least one secret Wookiee route in the region, with rumors telling of hundreds more that the Claatuvacs were honor-bound to guard with their lives.
The Clone Wars
By 19 BBY, Gumbaeki was the Master of the Guild, with Chak as an apprentice. Throughout the Clone Wars, both the Republic and CIS repeatedly sent operatives to Kashyyyk and battle fleets to the region, reasoning that knowledge of the Guild's secret routes could provide a decisive advantage.
In the final weeks of the Clone Wars, Separatist forces launched an assault on Kachirho in order to capture the Claatuvac archives and discover information on previously unknown hyperspace routes. The routes would provide a great advantage to the Confederacy of Independent Systems, especially the Trade Federation, in their quest for control of galactic trade.
The Grand Army of the Republic led by Grand Master Yoda counterattacked to drive the Separatists from Kashyyyk. However, after witnessing Order 66 and the clone troopers' execution of their Jedi officers, Gumbaeki grasped the nature of the Galactic Empire that had just been proclaimed on Coruscant. Reasoning that the Empire would burn Kashyyyk to claim the Guild's secrets, Gumbaeki chose to hide the Guild's data.
Gumbaeki downloaded the contents of the Guild's data stacks on to miniature encrypted HoloGrids, which were then distributed among the Guild's most loyal and trusted scouts and navigators, perhaps a dozen Wookiees in all. Gumbaeki then destroyed the data held in the vault in Tree Vikkilynn and made himself conspicuous in Kachirho's defense, giving the rest of the Guild time to escape. When the Empire entered the Claatuvac vault they found the data stacks wiped clean and their contents irrecoverable.
- "When we went down to take a look at the Wookiee guild vaults, we found no trace of the navigational data that had brought the Separatists to Kashyyyk in the first place."
Kashyyyk was subjugated by the Empire shortly afterwards, and the Claatuvac stacks became the stuff of legend once again. Both Imperial and Rebel intelligence agents pursued rumors of Claatuvac data during the Galactic Civil War, but it was not until 3 ABY that a legitimate stack came to light: Chewbacca, first mate to the smuggler Han Solo, had been entrusted with a HoloGrid, and he shared this information with Solo, allowing the pair to become accomplished smugglers. In the aftermath of the Battle of Hoth, Chewbacca gave his stack to Princess Leia Organa, and the Rebel Alliance put the information to great use in its battle against the Empire.
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