WAY BACK THEN
This is a summery of the contents of the 2nd issue of The Black Star, newsletter of the Region of Ansteorra. The issue is in the archives of the Historians office but SCA regulations prevent us from reproducing the issue here. This description is from the Argent Anniversary Gate Brochure.
WAY BACK THEN!
The Region of Ansteorra
A commentary of the 2nd Issue of The Black Star
By H.L. Annes Clotilde von Bamburg
January 18, 2005
From the pages of the 2nd issue of the Black Star: These being the earliest records at the disposal of this historian. Quotes are presented in the original spelling, grammar, punctuation and style as presented on the page.
The Issue itself: Cover Page and 1 and 2
The rules for the issue seemed to set the tone for all the other issues. Submissions were to be in the dimensions of “7 ½”: X 9 ¾ “” Deadlines were the 25th day of the previous month and all research had to be documented with footnotes. The issue was free to officers and copies were also sent to the Atenveldt chronicler. Ordinary folk were asked to pay for postage, which was a whopping “$1.56 for 12 issues”. since the newsletter received “no outside subsidy”.
The cover art for that issue was credited to “Master Erasimierz Waspanieski, OL, OCB, Baron Bjornsborg”. Thanks were given to one “Brother Lupis, Prior of Bentwood Abbey” for help in producing the first issue (of which this historian would dearly love to find an intact copy). Thanks were also given to “Jonathan deLaufyson, for the extended use of his magic scribe.” I am not too sure what a “magic scribe” is but I’m thinking it may have been an electric typewriter. Perhaps at some point, I shall ask H.G. Jonathan if he remembers what it was.
It was published on 3 sheets of plain typing paper, stapled together down the center.
Included was a vacant spot called “The Jongleur’s Corner” which I’m thinking was a spot for bards to post their songs and stories. Apparently, chroniclers even then had problems getting folks to write and submit articles on time.
It also included an article written by the seneschal called
“The System-How It Works”
explaining what the office of the seneschal was and what it did and did not do. This was advertised as an ongoing “series of articles which will be of interest and benefit to both old and new members alike”. The next month’s article was to be on the Herald’s office. Here is what the seneschal’s article said: “Generally speaking, the seneschal is the first interpreter of the laws, mundane and Society, that apply to a group, its officers, or its populace. At the kingdom level, he is the first advisor to the King on those laws and is the person who is empowered by the BoD to withdraw SCA sanction from an event should those laws be violated and the violations be allowed to continue after the seneschal has alerted the officials at the event. This withdrawal is followed, always, by notification of the BoD of the action, its cause and other information relating to the event. The only other person authorized to withdraw SCA sanction is the Earl Marshall, who may do so if the Rules of the Lists are violated and the seneschal refuses to withdraw SCA sanction. The Marshall must follow his action with a full report to the BoD. At the Principality level, the seneschal has the same duties as on the Kingdom level, with regards to the Prince. At the Baronial level, his duties are the same, but include acting as coordinator of the officers, the chairman at official administrative meetings, and the administrator of the Prince’s or the King’s directives. At below Baronial levels, his powers and duties are the same. At all levels, he is the administrator of the seneschal’s office, those officers assigned to that office, and matters relating exclusively to that office. He may be impowered by the BoD, the King, or the Prince to other duties, authorities, and functions.”
Ld. William of the Shire, former Aten Seneschal, wrote this article. Sir Koris Natterhelm who was seneschal of the Region of Ansteorra at that time submitted it for publication. It is interesting to note that very little has changed other than to expand the duties of the seneschal, but the basic groundwork was already in place. It is also interesting to see that our “region” was so new to the game that the officers felt it necessary to educate their populace in who they were and what they did!!
The Issue Itself: Pages 3, 4, 5 and 6
These next 4 pages give the SCA and mundane names of “The Officers of the Region of Ansteorra and Her Shires and Baronies”. It is interesting to see how many of these folk are still involved even today in our Kingdom. Leaving out the mundane names (since most of us don’t know each other’s mundane names anyway) and the addresses, which are irrelevant due to their age, here is who was at the helm of the ship called Ansteorra in 1977.
Note: Names are spelled as they appear in the issue. Also, the anecdotes about people in this list come from my personal knowledge. Correcting any mistakes that you might note in these anecdotes by emailing me would be appreciated. Also, not writing about someone does not mean that they did nothing past the noted office but reflects ignorance on my part. If a gentle reads this and has information to impart to me about someone on this list, please contact me and relieve me of the darkness of my ignorance!!!
The Officers of the Region of Ansteorra and Her Shires and Baronies
The Region of Ansteorra: I was interested to note that the various awards someone held at the time were also included.
- Seneschal: Sir Koris Natterhelm, KSCA, OCB
- Pursuivant: Lady Aureliane Rigel, OTS
- Knight-Marshall: Sir Bathazar of Endor, KSCA
- Mistress of Arts: Baroness Arlene the Soother. This worthy was also a landed Baroness at the time being the baroness of The Stargate. Also note that the offices of Arts and Sciences were separate at the time.
- Master of Sciences: Ian of Skye.
- Chronicler: Lady Leah Kasmira of Natterhelm. Yes, this is the Lady wife of the seneschal, Sir Koris.
- Historian: Suleszka von Pferdenthal. Our kingdom has always had a Historian, some good, some not so good. However, this present Kingdom Historian knows almost nothing about this premier predecessor, other than the facts that she resided in Bjornsborg and was married to the man who became our 3rd king, although she was not his queen.
The Barony of The Stargate
- Seneschal: Lady Janet Shadowhawke. This lady went on to change her name and is now known as Mistress Janet of House Morningstar.
- Misty Star Pursuivant: Lord Bran de Tintreach. This Lord became Baron of The Stargate and held the land in *Fief for nearly 8 years. He also became one of our Kingdom’s seneschals and a Master of the Pelican.
- Knight-Marshall: Robert Galvanyzed
- Mistress of Arts: Lysabeth Poulsdottir. This lady’s name can be seen on the Laurel’s pages on the Kingdom Website.
- Mistress of Sciences: Kasilda Kubasic. This lady’s name can also be seen on the Laurel’s pages!
- Chronicler, Historian, and Hospitaler: Lady Tambrylyn Shaunty
The Barony of The Steppes
- Seneschal: Jonn Elynn
- Golden Oak Pursuivant: Lord Adezel
- Knight-Marshall: Sir Randall von Nordlichwald, KSCA. This man went on to become the 2nd Prince of the *Principality of Ansteorra.
- Mistress of Arts: Sara Celeste de la Nuite
- Master/Mistress of Sciences: Vacant
- Chronicler: Vacant It would seem at this early stage of our history that certain offices which are required to be filled by Baronies now could be vacant as shown by these open offices.
- Historian: Lord John of the Rudder
- Hospitaler: Brother Lupus
The Barony of Bjornsborg
- Seneschal: Lady Clare RosMuire St. John, OCB
- Cap and Bells Pursuivant: Jan w Orzledom. This gentle became the 6th king of Ansteorra, a Baron of *Bjornsborg, a Knight, a Laurel, a Pelican and a Lion of Ansteorra.
- Knight-Marshall: Lord Tanasan Dimrithil, OCB
- Mistress of Arts: Lady Katharina von Alyssin. This worthy became our 1st Princess of the Principality of *Ansteorra.
- Mistress of Sciences: Kemreth Danil. This lady became the 6th Queen of Ansteorra.
- Chronicler and Historian: Master Erasimierz Waspanieski, OL, OCB. This man was also Baron Bjornsborg and the person who crafted our Principality charter as chronicled later on in this issue.
- Hospitaler: Seana Catriona Melusine de Frazer. This lady went on to become Baroness Bryn Gwalad.
The Shire of Bordermarch
- Seneschal: Tessa of the Gardens. Today H.E. Countess Tessa of the Gardens is still very active and is the ER deputy to the present Kingdom Historian. She is an integral part of our History herself, being the 3rd and last Princess of Ansteorra and the 9th Queen. She has been active in her Barony since it’s beginning, eventually being it’s Baroness and today is it’s Historian. Her latest award was to be given the Lion of Ansteorra. This being a most suitable accolade for a great and beautiful lady, who still holds the hearts of many and beloved by those who know her. Hmmm…can’t tell I like and admire this lady, can you?
- Pursuivant: Bran of Halbrook
- Knight-Marshall: Simonn of Amber. This gentleman is now H.E. Count Sir Simonn of Amber Isle, beloved husband of H.E. Tessa of the Gardens. Like his wife, he has remained a vital part of this Kingdom. He has been so active that he was also awarded his Pelican. He is known for his love of teaching the chivalric arts and his love of teaching the youth of our Kingdom.
- Mistress of Arts: Patricia of Blackmoor
- Master of Sciences: Brendan of Hy Brasil
- Chronicler: Thorin the Thrice Blessed
- Historian: Vacant
- Hospitaler: Tessa of the Gardens
The Shire of the Southern Isles This shire no longer exists but was centered on and around Galveston Island, Texas.
- Seneschal: Coemgen of the Isles
- Pursuivant: Randal Alsobrooke
- Knight-Marshall: Robert of Peebles
- Master of Arts: Aristide du Landolet
- Master of Sciences: Valentine the Heartless
- Chronicler; Regina von Liszt
- Historian: vacant
- Hospitaler: vacant
The Shire of Bryngwlad This worthy shire is now one of our foremost Baronys
- Seneschal: Adyssyn of Rowanglen
- Pursuivant: Alissand of Serenglen
- Knight-Marshall: Jon St. Vincent d’Outremer
- Mistress of arts: Dail Ey Eiliwraid a Cwm Cwymp Dur
- Master of sciences: Gwilym Ey Fferyll a Caer Llwad
- Chronicler: vacant
- Historian: Goshan von Sach
The Incipient Shire of Nord Aus Das Strom This is now the Barony of Northkeep.
- Seneschal: Agnes de Michelle
The last ½ page of page 6 has a brief recipe for a rice pudding included by the chronicler and a calendar of “coming attractions”. By way of allowing the reader to compare our kingdom’s earliest calendar to today’s busy calendar, here is what it looked like:
*1 Kingdom Arts Fair—Barony of The Steppes Golden Dragon Tourney—Barony of Draconia (This barony was in Louisiana and no longer exists today.) ****SCA New Year—First Day of A.S. XII**** *25 Deadline for June issue
- 27-30 Warlord Tourney—Steppes
*11-12 Border-March/Draconia Skirmish—Laffyette, La.
- 25 Deadline for July issue
- ? Crown Tournament, details unknown
This Issue Itself: pages 7 and 8
Page 7 was very interesting because it had the event announcement of the 3rd Steppes Warlord event. It was held at a site called “Camp Burnett on the Memorial Day weekend. There was a map but there were no prices listed. Perhaps there were no site or feast fees!! What an idea! The contact given was “Mistress Willow de Wisp” so I am assuming that Her Grace was the autocrat. The advertisement started out with “Hear Ye Nobles of Atenvelt” which, of course, to my mind sounded oddly but we were Atenvelt then!! It advertised contests “involving the best love story to be presented to the Court of Love; best misrepresentation of a peer at the Court of Misrule and an arts and crafts presentation.” A group called “Clan Caldal” was also to honor their patron saint, Usquebaugh, who was supposedly the patron saint “of those who over imbibe” by hosting a tavern.
Page 8 contained a Xerox copy of a photograph but it is too poor quality to make out anything of it. The pictures caption however was fascinating. It reads: “Master Torgatai the Black Wolf, first Warlord of the Steppes, receiving the Greatsword of the Steppes, May 25, A.S. X.” (Emphasis mine)
Also on this page was an article by Patricia of Blackmoor , the “Mistress of Arts” from the “Shire of Bordermarch”, detailing the goings-on of the Kingdom Arts Fair. I have to keep reminding myself that the “kingdom” referred to is Atenveldt, not Ansteorra.
The “Kingdom Arts Faire” had been held in the Steppes on April 30 and May 1 at Camp Burnett. She reported that “Over 85 entries from Meridies and Ansteorra, with one entry from the Principality of the Sun by Rodema of Rhoan, were submitted to the five categories.” I was surprised to see the number of entrants that she quoted in her article. She went on to list the awards given to the winners of “beautifully detailed scrolls” and 1st place receiving “a gold on silver chalice”.
She listed the winners of the 5 categories as:
- Performing Arts: 1st place-Lady Drstha Maida of Lowara
- 2nd place-Ian Astoroth of Skye and also to a Lady Ivivis of Cronwall
- 1st place-Master Aren, Lord Rivenhorn and Master Erasimierz Waspanieski, Baron Bjornsborg (for the petition for Principality status).
- 2nd place-Master Aren, Lord Rivenhorn
This particular double entry of both a first and 2nd place to Master Aren, Lord Rivenhorn makes me wonder if it is an error. But perhaps they actually did this. Like many things, which are common at the time of writing, this may have been a common practice and therefore no explanations need be given.
- 1st place-Ivivis of Cronwall
- 2nd place-House Thornwell
Apparently, households could enter which doesn’t happen today.
- 1st place-Lord Allemandus, Baron Steppes
- 2nd place-Corwind Distart
- 1st place-Ian Astoroth of Skye
- 2nd place-Lord Allemandus, Baron Steppes
She goes on in her article to praise the turnout “despite the heavy rains” and noted that “twenty-seven tents were counted” She notes the presence of the Kingdom Science Officer, Lord Llywellyn of Meriadudd. Then she praises the sale of “fifteen box lunches” that were auctioned off to the populace and that the event collected “over $100.00” with “the feast offered by Mistress Willow de Wisp bringing in $55.00 alone.”
The last paragraph of this article chronicles the signing of the petition for principality status for the Region of Ansteorra. She ended the article by noting that the region’s newest Laurel, Master Aren, Lord Rivenhorn and its newest Knight, Sir Randal, Lord von Nordlichwald represented the peers of Ansteorra at this signing.
This Issue Itself: Pages 9 and 10
Page 9 contains a letter copied from the April issue of Southwind. It is from the Society Marshall, Andrew of Seldom Rest, wherein he voices concern “that there is a considerable amount of activity on the Lists at some events in some places which is not in accordance with the Rules of the Lists.” He lists the rules that groups have violated and then gives the following injunction to “all autocrats, seneschals and marshals at all officially sanctioned events”. He states in all capital letters, “THERE SHALL BE NO FENCING, KARATE, ARCHERY AT HUMAN TARGETS OR KENDO PRACTICED AT THE SAME TIME AND PLACE AS ANY OFFICIALLY SANCTIONED EVENT OF THE SOCIETY FOR CREATIVE ANACHRONISM, INC.”
The rest of his letter goes on to apologize to those persons who may be proficient in the mentioned sports but in the interest of safety, the fact that safety equipment had been reportedly not used, the fact that marshals were not trained to supervise such sports, they would not be permitted until more input was given to the BoD and to his office concerning the issue. He ends his letter with a request for commentary but with an admonition to “Please try to be nice about it though.”
My feelings as I read his letter at first were along the lines of “My goodness, certainly this was a joke!” Then I remembered that the Society Marshallate is not given to joking about such things so the mentioned and banned sports must have been taking place as listed.
Page 10 is a hand drawn calendar for the month of May.
If you have made it this far, congratulations and thank you. Since these issues are so rare and hard to come by, I can’t share them “in the flesh” as it were with the rest of the kingdom. By writing these commentaries, I hope to share and also preserve some of what is in those pages. At some future nebulous date, I hope to preserve them even better by scanning them into archival quality CD’s (Thank you Baron Edwin, for this suggestion)
Until then, I remain… In Service,
H.L. Annes Clotilde von Bamburg
Bibliography: All quotes and references taken from Volume 1, issue 2, May A.S. XII, 1977 C.E. of The Black Star, official publication for the Region (now Kingdom) of Ansteorra.