You're damn right she's a bitch. Ruined my whole goddamn life. But I can see you don't give a crap about any of that. Fine.

Dr. Horace Pinkerton, a self-described talented electrician, scientist, and surgeon, is a reclusive inhabitant of Rivet City's broken bow in 2277. He was at one time a former council member of Rivet City who was replaced by Madison Li after a disagreement between them that resulted in Pinkerton storming out.


Horace Pinkerton was born in 2217. At the age of 60, he is a bitter old man who helped turn Rivet City from a ruined aircraft carrier into a livable community. He's grown tired of people and spends the remainder of his days isolated within his broken bow workshop, which also serves as his living quarters. Most of the residents would be surprised to find that he is still on the ship, let alone living there. Belle Bonny knows that he lives in Rivet City still, and is willing to release this bit of information through conversation. Doctor Li and Seagrave Holmes remember him from the early days, but assume he left Rivet City decades ago.[1]

In his early twenties, he helped lead the remnants of the Naval Research Institute in a search for new lab space until they came across an abandoned aircraft carrier around 2237. After clearing out the mirelurk infestation, he and his team moved into the carrier and set up their science lab. Soon after, the population within their new home began to grow, leading Pinkerton to name the aircraft carrier Rivet City and to even form a council in 2239, which consisted of himself along with Annette Holmes and Brad Danvers.

After Doctor Li arrived in Rivet City, Pinkerton's science team became enamored with Project Purity, and left Pinkerton to conduct his research on his own. Angered by this turn of events, Pinkerton expounded his views on the futility of Project Purity. Eventually, he was forced out of the Rivet City council and replaced by Doctor Li. In a self-imposed exile, Pinkerton moved his home and lab into the broken bow of the ship. Years later, most of the inhabitants of Rivet City are no longer even aware of the location of Pinkerton or his hidden science lab. To many, his existence has become a legend.

Pinkerton is the doctor who performed facial reconstruction surgery and a mind wipe on the android Harkness in order to help the Railroad hide him from the Institute. A brash and talented scientist, Pinkerton is the only known person in the Capital Wasteland who has the skills to perform such complicated surgery.

Interactions with the player character

Interactions overview

Perk nociception regulator color.png
This character is essential. Essential characters cannot be killed.
Icon doctor.webp
This character is a doctor.
  • Offers facial reconstruction.
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This character is involved in quests.


Other interactions

  • During and after "The Replicated Man" quest, he will offer the player character facial reconstruction surgery free of charge.


Apparel Weapon Other items On death
Wasteland wanderer outfit Assault rifle Android component


  • His personal computer terminal is not difficult to locate - it is wall-mounted to the left of the x-ray displays.
  • In one of Doctor Pinkerton's journals in his terminal, it says that he stole a memory chip from Vault 112 and used it to give Harkness memories of a "life."
  • When the Lone Wanderer chooses to get a facial reconstruction from Pinkerton, there seems to be no difference in people's reactions to the player character. Everyone still recognizes them, despite the new face.
  • For the facial reconstruction, Pinkerton says there will be a 35% chance of infection by his hands, although this never becomes an issue.

Notable quotes

  • "This is the part where you tell me what the hell you're doing bothering an old man who obviously wants to be left alone.... get on with it already!"
  • "Well, start believing or start walking! Remnants of the Naval Research Institute cleared the mirelurks off this wreck about 40 years ago. We were looking for new lab-space, and this bucket of bolts just happened to have a well-preserved science bay on it. Everything else just grew up around that lab once we got it up and running. The science team was led by one "H. Pinkerton.""
  • "Who cares? It's some hydroponics pipe dream that Li's been working on forever. Waste of time and effort, I say. Apparently, though, my teams cared more about it than they did about little things like defense systems or making this ship float again. Treacherous bastards, all of them." – Pinkerton, about Project Purity
  • "You're damn right she's a bitch. Ruined my whole goddamn life. But I can see you don't give a crap about any of that. Fine."
  • "Oh, all right. So maybe I didn't wipe his mind, like he asked. But I buried it! Deep! Almost as good, really. But it's still there. Still accessible. All you need to do is use the recall code. Just say to him, "Activate A3-21 Recall Code Violet" and that will activate the hidden subroutines."


Horace Pinkerton appears only in Fallout 3.

Behind the scenes

FB8 deco 301 color.pngThe following is based on unverified behind the scenes information and is speculative and may not be accurate.
  • Pinkerton's name may be taken from a Mark Twain short story The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg.
  • Pinkerton is possibly based on the character J.R. Isidore from the Phillip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, the basis for the Blade Runner franchise. In Replicant Night, the second sequel novel by author K.W. Jeter, Isidore is revealed to have performed a similar role to Pinkerton, in giving escaped Replicants (the basis for the Synths of Fallout) new appearances and memories in order to avoid detection, along with implanting a secret memory recall trigger in them.
FB8 deco 301 color.pngEnd of information based on unverified behind the scenes information.


  • Icon pc.png Icon ps3.png Icon xbox360.png When the player chooses to get a facial reconstruction, there is a possibility that the Lasergrafter will not center on the character's face; it will only show the top half of it. When the player clicks "Done," the character view is shifted properly, but if the player selects "no" (to return to the facial editor), the view will shift back to only showing the top half of the face. [verified]
  • Icon ps3.png Icon xbox360.png Making the Lone Wanderer's skin darker using facial reconstruction, not saving the game and loading the previous save, will result in having a dark skin color, but a much lighter colored face. [verified]
  • Icon pc.png Icon xbox360.png After choosing a lighter skin tone, the right hand of the Lone Wanderer will remain dark until the game has been restarted. [verified]


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