posted by Jia .
Do you capitalize north as in "The North?"
Depending on the reference, maybe:
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/capitals.htm <~~Read #4 carefully.
If you are writing, "Our family comes from north of Portland," then no capitalization. But if you are writing, "It was one of the battles between the North and the South," then yes.
Directions are capitalized only when they refer to specific sections of the country or world. For instance: The North and the South fought against each other in the U.S. Civil War.