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East Kingdom Wiki Tutorial

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2018-02-01 09:59

Lady Violet Hughes has created a tutorial for creating and updating populace pages on the East Kingdom Wiki Site.

The tutorial can be found on Google Docs.

Tir Mara Populace Badge/ Le Blason pour la Population de Tir Mara

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2018-02-01 00:45

En français

Greetings from Lord Conn mac Branain, Chair of the Tir Mara Populace Badge Committee.

The process for selecting a populace badge for Tir Mara progresses.  We have finished evaluating the submissions received and are now ready to proceed to the next step: consulting the people of Tir Mara.

Five designs have been selected for consideration.  We feel an online poll utilizing a ranked ballot is the best approach.  The designs are available to view on the Principality website as well as in the poll itself, https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XRC6TZM.  Please rank the submissions in order of preference from 1 to 5, with 1 being the most preferred and 5 the least preferred.

The poll will run until the midnight, 28th February, at which point we will make the results known and present them to Their Royal Highnesses for consideration.


En français —

Salutation de Lord Conn mac Branain, président le comité pour l’approbation du blason pour la population de Tir Mara.

Le processus pour le choix du blason de la population de Tir Mara avance bien. Nous avons terminés l’évaluation des soumissions reçus et sommes prêt à passer à l’étape suivante qui est de consulter la population de Tir Mara

Cinq blasons ont étés sélectionnés pour considération. Nous pensons qu’un vote en ligne est la meilleure approche. Les blasons sous considération sont disponible pour consultation sur le site de la Principauté au: http://tirmara.eastkingdom.org/populace-badge-committee/tir-mara-badge-options/ ainsi que sur le site du vote lui-même,  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XRC6TZM.

Veuillez noter les blasons de 1 à 5. 1 étant votre préférer et 5 étant le moins aimé. Le vote continuera jusqu’à minuit le 28 février. À ce moment les résultas du vote seront rendu publique et présentés à leurs Altesses pour considération.

Traduction: Lord Eginhard d’Aix la Chapelle

Rare 14th-16th c. shipwrecks found in Stockholm

History Blog - Wed, 2018-01-31 23:17

Archaeologists have discovered the wrecks of two ships in the Baltic Sea off Stockholm. That’s not unusual because the Baltic is a) really cold, and b) so saline that shipworm (and other assorted wood-eating critters), which can devour a wooden wreck in a matter of months, find it distinctly inhospitable. There are at least 100 intact ships on the Baltic Sea bed around Stockholm.

What is unusual about the two that have just been discovered is their age. One is a medieval cog believed to date to the 14th or early 15th century. The other is from the 16th century. Most of the ships that sank in Stockholm’s waters date to the 17th and 18th centuries when Sweden’s naval fleet was in its fullest fulgor.

Swedish National Maritime Museums (SNMM) divers found the wrecks just before Christmas while photographing and surveying the seabed for a new museum dedicated to the maritime archaeology of the Baltic Sea.

The wreckage from the Middle Ages is mostly submerged in mud and its details indicate that it is a cog, most likely from the 14th or 15th century. The ship is 23–25 meters in length and seven meters wide. It is likely to have had a mast with a square rig. More shipbuilding details indicate it being from the Middle Ages, such as protruding deck beams with unusually high knees and a simple anchor wheel. When cog ships were introduced on the seas they were a brand new, large and powerful type of ship that came to dominate large parts of the trade around the Baltic Sea for centuries.

The other shipwreck is estimated to be from the 16th century and still stands with the mast straight up and fully equipped. Some of the discoveries onboard include 20 barrels of osmond iron, kitchen utensils and tools. The extent of the iron found is unprecedented in previous maritime findings. Osmond iron has largely built Sweden, but also supported countries around the Baltic Sea. Gustav Vasa wanted to ban the iron, and this happened later in 1604 when osmond iron was replaced with wrought iron.

The SNMM is working on a ground-breaking new approach to shipwreck archaeology and display: leaving them where they are. Instead of investing in the risky, time-consuming and prohibitively expensive recovery of shipwrecks as was done with the incomparable Vasa, known wrecks and ones still to be discovered will stay on the Baltic Sea floor where they will be explored by marine archaeologists. The new maritime archaeological museum, to be built next to the Vasa‘s museum home in Stockholm, will display artifacts and fragments of wrecks recovered in the dives rather than the ships themselves. Visitors will still get a chance to see them, not in person after decades of conservation and restoration (always precarious), but as if they had been part of the diving team. The wonders of computer graphics and virtual reality technology make it possible to experience marine archaeological remains in their original context, in virtual situ, if you will.

The Treasures of the Baltic Sea museum is scheduled to open in 2020.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Registration Deadline Today! King’s and Queen’s Arts & Bardic Champions

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2018-01-31 10:34

Today (January 31st) is the very last day to pre-register for the East Kingdom’s King’s & Queen’s A&S and Bardic Championships, held 2/10/18 in Northpass (specifically Mount Kisco, NY, upper Westchester County).

Come for the sights, the sounds, the smells and tastes of the dayboard, the embraces of your friends, and the pleasure of our mutual good company… and to make your entry into the halls of displayed treasures and performances as quick as possible, please pre-register using PayPal.

PayPal registration (an easy two part process):
1) http://surveys.eastkingdom.org/index.php/728166
2) survey is followed shortly by an SCA email giving you the PayPal invoice and link.

Pre-Registration $17
Pre-Registration with membership discount $12
Reservation deadline January 31st, 2018

At the Door $20
At the Door with membership discount $15

Children 6-17: $8
Children under 6: Free

For more details,
http://www.eastkingdom.org/EventDetails.php?eid=3242

Unofficial Court Report: Owlsherst Country Twelfth Night

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2018-01-31 06:58

photo by Svana Vefa

Being the Court of Their Majesties Ivan and Matilde held on January 20, A.S. LII (2018) in the Shire of Owlsherst at Owlsherst Country Twelfth Night

Court Heralds: Lady Marian Kirkpatrick, Baroness Christina Jenevra de Carvalhal, Padraig O’Bradaigh, Charlotte Ingen Mhuiraeg

Reporting Heralds: Master Malcolm Bowman and Lady Marian Kirkpatrick

1. Siobhan inghean ui Ghadhra – Award of Arms
(scroll by Mari Clock van Hoorne with words by: Mistress Alys Mackyntoich)

2. Brendon of Silver Rylle – Order of the Gawain
(no scroll)

3. Céline Elisabeth de Meaux – Order of the Silver Rapier
(scroll by Mairi Crawford with words by Eldrich Gaiman)

4. Céline Elisabeth de Meaux – Order of the Silver Wheel
(scroll by Linette de Gallardon and the Owlsherst Co-Operative Scriptorium)

photo by Svana Vefa

5. Jacques de Villiers Saint Oryen, aka Dorien of Elvenwood – Order of the Silver Rapier
(scroll by Mairi Crawford with words by Eldrich Gaiman)

6. Jacques de Villiers Saint Oryen, aka Dorien of Elvenwood – Award of Arms
(no scroll)

7. Jacques de Villiers Saint Oryen, aka Dorien of Elvenwood – Order of the Silver Wheel
(scroll by Linette de Gallardon and the Owlsherst Co-Operative Scriptorium)

8. Donnchadh Mac Lochlainn – Award of Arms
(no scroll)

9. Conall Ó Suibhne, also called Conall mac Suibhne or Conall mac Taithlich – Order of the Silver Wheel
(scroll by Linette de Gallardon and the Owlsherst Co-Operative Scriptorium)

photo by Svana Vefa

10. Fabrisse of Owlsherst – Order of the Silver Wheel
(no scroll)

11. Olwen ferch Bleddyn – Order of the Silver Wheel
(no scroll)

12. Olwen ferch Bleddyn – Award of Arms
(no scroll)

 

13. Marcus D’Orleans – – Order of the Silver Wheel
(no scroll)

14. Svana Vefa – Award of Arms
(no scroll)

15. Dimitrius Alexandros – Award of Arms
(scroll by Mari Clock van Hoorne, with words by Edmund Beneyt)

16. Leonilla Kalista Kievlianina, called Kalista – Order of the Silver Brooch
(no scroll)

photo by Svana Vefa

17. Esmeria de Rus – Order of the Silver Brooch
(Scroll – Illumination by Triona MacCasky, Caligraphy by Master Johnathan Blaecstan, words by Lady Shoshana Gryffith)

18. Esmeria de Rus – Award of Arms
(no scroll)

19. Orlaithe inn voðfroli – Order of the Silver Brooch
(scroll by Linette de Gallardon and the Owlsherst Co-Operative Scriptorium)

20. Elizabeth mac Neachtan – Order of Silver Brooch
(scroll – Illumination by Triona MacCasky, Caligraphy by Master Johnathan Blaecstan, with words by Mistress Dorigen of the Grey Gate)

21. Pani Magdalena Gdanska – Order of the Golden Lire
(no scroll)

22. Whistler O’Pit – Order of the Golden Mantle
(Scroll – Illumination by Ellesbeth Donofrey, with calligraphy by Jonathan Blaecstan)

photo by Svana Vefa

Other business:

– Shire Wars Charter was signed
– The Children’s toybox was run
– Mori Matsunomai made a presentation from Owlsherst
– Ivan Valfreker received a backlog scroll, and swore his fealty
– Ruslan Novgorodcev and House Gliepnirvirki made a presentation
– Ruslan Novgorodcev swore fealty to the crown

2,500-year-old grave mutliple burial found in Mexico

History Blog - Tue, 2018-01-30 23:43

Archaeologists with Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) have discovered a 2,500-year-old grave containing the skeletal remains of at least 10 people during a salvage excavation in Tlalpan, a borough in the Federal District of Mexico City. The grave was found five feet below the surface under property belonging to the Pontifical University of Mexico. It is the first burial with so many individuals from the Preclassic period found in the Valley of Mexico. Previous finds have had two, at most three, individuals buried together.

The burial pit is modest in size, about 6.5 feet in diameter, considering how many bodies it contains. The skeletons found there were all buried at the same time. So far 10 individual skeletons have been identified. The sex of three of them has been determined — two female, one male — and archaeologists are working to identify the rest. Most of them were children at the time of death. There is one confirmed adult, one child between three and five years of age and the remains of an infant who died just one month old. Osteological analysis has found individuals with deliberate cranial deformation and some dental modifications as well. There are also evidence of wear on the teeth and bone spurs on the vertebrae, today more common in people older than 50.

The grave goods include earthenware bowls, pots and gourds of various sizes from large to tiny. There also stones and ceramic spheres placed in the hands of some of the deceased.

Investigations into the cause of death are ongoing. There is no immediate evidence of them being related to each other or affiliated in any other way, but there is likely a ritual significance to their deaths because their remains were carefully arranged, the arms of one placed under the spine of the other in a sort of windmill pattern that is particularly pronounced in the center. They’re not in the same positions, however. Some are on their sides, others on their back or with their knees pulled up to their chest or their lower limbs hyperextended towards the hips. Their intricate placement is how the team knew they were buried together in a single event.

The area was first settled around 1200-1000 BC as a small farming community. It was one of the first settlements south of modern-day Mexico City. The civic center that developed is known as Cuicuilco and the archaeological site contains the remains of a conical pyramid on oval base, built around 800–600 B.C., likely modeled after one of several active volcanoes in the Valley of Mexico. The attempt to appease the local Pele was successful for centuries. Until it wasn’t. Cuicuilco was obliterated in the eruption of the Xitle volcano around 100-200 A.D. Subsequent eruptions buried the city and the valley in lava.

The village of Tlalpan was settled just east of Cuicuilco between the Zacatenco phases (700-400 B.C.) and Ticoman (400-200 B.C.) of the Middle and Late Formative period. It had come to some prominence, apparently, until the eruption depopulation the valley. There may have been a brief Post-Classic period resettlement (archaeologists are still debating this point) but by then the area was dominated by the nearby urban center of Teotihuacan which didn’t exist yet as a single community when Xitle destroyed Cuicuilco.

When archaeologists first came across the remains of basalt stone walls, they weren’t sure at first what period they came from. They thought they might be Post-Classic, but closer examination found that they were built using river stones, which is marker of Pre-Classic construction. INAH experts believe Tlalpan had areas used for residential, ritual or burial purposes, pieces of which have been found in this excavation and others over the past dozen years. The stone walls were from a private dwelling, archaeologists believe.

This Spanish language video released by INAH shows the burial pit once it’s fully excavated and includes commentary from the researchers on the arrangement of the bodies. Turn on the closed captioning if your Spanish is shaky or non-existent and use the auto-translator to get a hint of what they’re saying through the autogenerated weirdnesses.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

SCA, Inc.: Addendum – Board Statement on Hate Speech

East Kingdom Gazette - Tue, 2018-01-30 14:11

The following message was published today by the SCA, Inc. Board of Directors:

In our zeal to craft a statement to show where the Board stands on the subject of hate speech, the word “Religion” was inadvertently left off. We apologize for the oversight.

Paul Lancaster
Chair, Board of Directors
Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.

_________________________

The Society for Creative Anachronism strongly condemns hate speech in any form by any officers and participants of this organization. The SCA was founded on and continues to be governed by the concepts of chivalry and honor, and strives to include and be respectful of all people, regardless of race, gender, religion, disability, sexual orientation, and politics. All participants are reminded of and expected to hold to these principles in participating in this organization and interacting with other people in person and in all forums, regardless of media.

The Board of Directors has heard the concerns of many people regarding the use of hate symbols in the SCA. The Board is concerned about this matter and has tasked the President of the SCA to immediately investigate. The President has the full confidence of the Board, and the Board will act as necessary to protect the participants of the SCA and to ensure that chivalry, honor, and respect for all continue to govern the organization.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas, CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc.  Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Call for Applicants for SCA Board Communications Officer

AEthelmearc Gazette - Tue, 2018-01-30 06:13

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. is seeking candidates for the position of Board Communications Officer, which will be a 3-year warranted term of service. The successful candidate will be primarily responsible for external and internal communications from the Board of Directors and Corporate Officers.

Key Responsibilities

* Create and curate posts, press releases, and official announcements from the SCA Board of Directors and the its officers.
* Ensure the consistency of messaging internally and externally.

Qualifications

* Experience in communications in an organization; nonprofit a plus.
* Proficient in WordPress and some knowledge of HTML preferred.
* Copywriting and editing ability.
* Expertise with social media and networking sites.

Candidate Profile

* A passion for, and commitment to, effective communication within the SCA.
* Organized, detail-oriented, ability to prioritize multiple projects.
* Outgoing, energetic, and accepting personality.
* Internet/Telephone access

Applicants must be paid members of the Society and able to travel to board meetings as requested by the Board.

Hard copies of résumés (both professional and SCA related, including offices held and honors) must be sent to the attention of ‘Communications Officer’, SCA, Inc., P.O. Box 360789, Milpitas, CA 95036-0789. Electronic courtesy copies should also be sent to resumes@sca.org.

The deadline for submissions is March 20, 2018.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc.  Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Categories: SCA news sites

Rare Arabic-inspired chess piece found in Norway

History Blog - Mon, 2018-01-29 23:21

Archaeologists have unearthed a rare medieval chess piece in the remains of a 13th century house in Tønsberg, Norway. It was discovered just before Christmas by a team from the Norwegian Institute of Cultural Heritage Research (NIKU) who were excavating the Anders Madsens gate area of Tønsberg.

The cylindrical piece is 30 mm high (1.2 inches) and 26 mm in diameter (1 inch). There’s a wedge jutting out from the top front and it as well as the rest of the body are decorated all over with circles with dots inside. It was carved out of antler and archaeologists believe the maker inserted a piece of lead in the middle of the cylinder to ensure it would hold firm on the chessboard.

Its unusual design suggests it was at least inspired by Arabic art, but that doesn’t mean it was manufactured by Islamic artists or in an Islamic country.

“The design of the piece has an abstract shape, and is designed according to Islamic tradition, where no human figures are to be depicted,” says project manager for the excavation in NIKU Lars Haugesten. […]

“No previous archaeological finds from Tønsberg have such details, which emphasizes that this chess piece is a unique object,” says Haugesten.

Researchers determined that the this piece is a knight. The piece was called an “asb,” meaning horse in Persian in the early form of chess that spread throughout Europe after the Islamic conquest that ended the Sasanian Persian Empire in the 7th century. The game under its Arabic name, shatranj, was brought to Europe via Islamic Spain in the 10th century and from there spread to the far reaches of the continent over the next couple of centuries.

The oldest known chess piece in Scandinavia was found in Lund, Sweden, and dates to the 12th century. It too is of Arabic design and is not dissimilar to the one recently unearthed at Tønsberg. Similar pieces have been found in Bergen, Norway, as well, where more than a thousand game pieces have been discovered in multiple excavations. The Arabic-influenced abstract knight design is very rare. There are only six examples of them among the Bergen pieces, and they have different dimensions and decorative motifs.

The Anders Madsens dig started in the fall and has so far discovered the remains of streets and houses from the Middle Ages. Artifacts found include a panoply of daily use objects like combs, pottery and antlers. The excavation has been the subject of much interest because Tønsberg is the oldest city in Norway, its founding traditionally dated to 871 A.D. based on the account of 13th century chronicler Snorri Sturluson, and the dig site is located in a key position near Slottsfjell Castle, the royal estate and St. Laurence Church, now no longer standing.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Unofficial Report on East Kingdom Curia

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2018-01-29 18:15

East Kingdom Curia was held on Sunday morning after the Market Day at Birka event in the Barony of Stonemarche.   Their Majesties Ivan Ivanov syn Dimitriov vynuk Tzardikov and Matilde de Cadenet presided, accompanied by Their Highnesses Brennan mac Fearghus and Caoilfhionn inghean Fhaolain and Mistress Katherine Barr, the Kingdom Seneschal.

The full agenda for the Curia can be read on the Kingdom Seneschal’s website: http://seneschal.eastkingdom.org/docs/EKCuria20180128agenda.pdf

Results will be official when published in Pikestaff, the East Kingdom newsletter, and will then be available at http://seneschal.eastkingdom.org/index.php as well.

The meeting opened with brief reports from the various kingdom officers.

A proposed change to the term of office of the Earl Marshall was noted, and approved as presented in the agenda without comment.  Most kingdom offices are held for two-year terms, but going forward the Earl Marshall will serve for a 3 year term, to commence immediately after the Pennsic War in years when the War has just been run by the East Kingdom.  Because responsibility for Pennsic rotates between the East, the Middle and Aethelmearc, this change allows the Earl Marshall to be involved in all the planning leading up to the year where he or she will be Marshall in Charge at War.

Proposed changes in the structure of the offices of Pennsic Steward and Pennsic Major-Domo were discussed.  These officers, between them, are responsible for the East Kingdom Royal encampment at Pennsic.  The changes proposed were well received by all, and are expected to be signed as presented in the agenda document.

The item of business generating most debate was the proposed change to Kingdom Law allowing  individuals and non-territorial groups to bid for and run Kingdom Events (Coronation, Crown Tourney, 12th Night and Champions events).

Mistress Mercedes de Calafia, former East Kingdom Seneschal, addressed the assembled Curia, noting that there is precedent for this, including the upcoming East Kingdom 50 Year Celebration, which is being run as a Kingdom-sponsored event, not by the group within whose boundaries the event site lies.  This law change was presented as formally codifying procedures for this situation.

A representative of House Runnymede proposed an alternate wording which would grant local groups the ability to veto such events.  Prince Brennan responded that that there is a significant and ongoing shortage of bids for these required events coming from the local groups.  After passionate but civil discourse an alternative wording was proposed which would call for the local seneschal to either accept or reasonably deny the bid within their lands.  If the bid was denied by the local seneschal, that decision could be overturned by the Kingdom Seneschal.  This was acclaimed as an acceptable compromise by all involved.

Other concerns which were expressed included whether the people organizing the bids would have sufficient knowledge of local laws to avoid actions which would result in repercussions to the local group as well as the Kingdom event.  The proposed law change provides for the local group to have a liaison to work with the event staff before and during the event, which would bring local knowledge to the event staff.  Also discussed was whether running an event in particular state but having all financial transactions handled at the Kingdom level would re-introduce the tax and financial issues which the state-by-state incorporations were put in place to avoid.  These concerns were resolved by a tax professional in attendance.

The modification to change the Award of Gilder to the Order of Gilder was accepted without significant comment.  Several heralds present did request some typographical corrections to the blazon as published in the agenda, which were duly noted for the final text.

The proposed Statement of Inclusion being added to the Rights of Subjects section was received positively, and accepted with some minor alternations to the wording.

One additional item, not present in the agenda, was added, exempting the polling order discussion lists from the email records the web ministry archives. An archive of those deliberations has never been maintained, but Kingdom Law as previously written appeared to require it. This will be corrected.

Request for Commentary – New SCA Mission Statement

AEthelmearc Gazette - Mon, 2018-01-29 15:05

Currently open for commentary is a proposal to expand the Society’s Mission Statement.

The Mission Statement currently reads as follows:

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. (SCA) is an international organization devoted to the research and re-creation of pre-seventeenth century life, employing knowledge of history to enrich participants’ lives and the lives of others through events, demonstrations, and other educational venues.

The proposed revision reads as follows:

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. (the “Society”) is a 501(c)3 Educational Not-for-Profit organization devoted to the study of the Middle Ages and Renaissance.  As a living history group, the Society provides an environment in which members can recreate various aspects of the culture and technology of the period, as well as doing more traditional historical research.

The Society’s mission is to promote the research and re-creation of pre-seventeenth century life, employing knowledge of history to enrich the lives of participants and others through live events and other educational venues.

In pursuing this mission, the Society is committed to excellence in its programs and activities and to

∙ act in accordance with the chivalric virtues of honor and service;
∙ value and respect the worth and dignity of all individuals;
∙ practice inclusiveness and respect pluralism and diversity;
∙ promote a safe and respectful environment for all Society events;
∙ act with transparency, fairness, integrity and honesty;
∙ be a responsible steward of Society resources; and,
∙ be committed to maintaining the trust of its members and participants.

It is the expectation of the Society that its members and participants, in all events and activities of the Society, will conduct themselves in accordance with these tenets.

****

Comments may also be emailed to comments@lists.sca.org. Please use “Mission Statement” in the subject line. Comments may also be mailed to the attention of ‘Attn: Mission Statement’, SCA, Inc., P.O. Box 360789, Milpitas, CA 95036-0789.

Commentary will be accepted until April 1, 2018.
 
Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Categories: SCA news sites

SCA Board Statement on Hate Speech

AEthelmearc Gazette - Mon, 2018-01-29 13:14

The Society for Creative Anachronism strongly condemns hate speech in any form by any officers and participants of this organization. The SCA was founded on and continues to be governed by the concepts of chivalry and honor, and strives to include and be respectful of all people, regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and politics. All participants are reminded of and expected to hold to these principles in participating in this organization and interacting with other people in person and in all forums, regardless of media.

The Board of Directors has heard the concerns of many people regarding the use of hate symbols in the SCA. The Board is concerned about this matter and has tasked the President of the SCA to immediately investigate. The President has the full confidence of the Board, and the Board will act as necessary to protect the participants of the SCA and to ensure that chivalry, honor, and respect for all continue to govern the organization.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Categories: SCA news sites

World War I propaganda at the Bruce Museum

History Blog - Sun, 2018-01-28 23:54

After the digitization of the World War I memorabilia, we went to the room next door where the Bruce Museum had its small but impeccable collection of World War I propaganda posters on display. About 3 dozen posters were on display, almost all of them in flawless condition with color lithography still vibrant. They were arranged in thematically-related groups, which illustrated how many angles artists used to approach the same subjects.

Perhaps the most compelling grouping from my perspective were the violent, disturbing ones that demonized the enemy as blood-thirsty barbarians. Some are a shock to the system, and would have doubtless been even more so in 1917-1918.



Another group of posters was dedicated to the mobilization of women as Red Cross volunteers, nurses and in the ubiquitous sale of bonds, stamps and other products devised to help finance the war. One poster stood out for me the most with its saturated color and detailed design:

Meanwhile, over in the section where recruitment posters reached out to American men to volunteer for the services if at all possible, I was struck by a rather happy piece with a Village People sort of vibe. It calls for men to join the US Navy by showing them in cheerful comraderie with sailors from around the world.

Posters were not the only things on display in the exhibition. There were some artifacts and two multimedia stations playing propaganda films on a loop. The first was an extraordinary piece of artwork by cartoonist and animation pioneer Winsor McCay. His most famous animated movie, Gertie the Dinosaur, released in 1914, was the first moving picture to have a dinosaur in it and while it wasn’t the first animated feature ever made, it stands out for its artistry and theme and has been studied and copied extensively.

In 1918, McCay created a masterpiece of animated innovation by way of propaganda: The Sinking of the Lusitania, as 12-minute animated recreation of the torpedoing of the RMS Lusitania. The tragedy was not filmed or photographed, so McCay relied on detailed descriptions from the Hearst Corporation’s Berlin correspondent August F. Beach to create his short film. It took him just shy of two years to finish the incredibly huge amount of drawing required to make this serious, dramatic subject come alive for 12 minutes. It was the longest animated feature ever made up until that point. The picture was not a box office hit, but it did fulfill its political purpose of making the sinking of the Lusitania a rallying cry for Americans, 123 of whose countrymen died on that ship.

The second film is lighter fare, starring a characteristically sweet, insouciant Mary Pickford learning how to rein in her profligacy so she can “do her bit” and buy a Liberty Bond. It’s a propaganda film, complete with her appeal straight to the audience in the end, but it also ties in with other propaganda media covered by the Bruce’s exhibition. There’s a “Hun” poster that shames her out of buying an ice cream sundae, and the title of the short is 100% American, a common motif in the recruiting and bond drive posters.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Memorial Service for Eric Belser (THL Wolfgang Starcke)

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sun, 2018-01-28 15:26

There will be two memorial services for Eric Belser. The first one will be held on Saturday, February 3 at the Wrights Corners Fire Company at 4043 Lake Avenue, Lockport, NY.

The memorial service will begin at 11 am and will immediately be followed by a potluck luncheon at the firehall. The potluck is being coordinated by Matthew Bulvi Kornaker on the SCA side.

Eric was a volunteer and officer for the Wrights Corners Fire Department. They are providing significant assistance and support at this time and we expect many members to be in attendance along with Eric and Katerin’s families. This is not an SCA event.

We will have the hall for the afternoon so people can gather and share memories. Please bring games, songs, and stories to share. The firehall will be manning the bar. Homebrewers who wish to share their work are also welcome.

For people who are coming from out of town and are in need of crash space, please contact Wendy Knier Hart, our crash space coordinator. Anyone in the Barony who has space to offer, please let Wendy know.

The second service will be held at the West Sand Lake Firehall east of Albany, New York, at a date yet to be determined. More information will follow.

Thank you all for your support.

Please direct questions to:

Clare Jackson, E-mail: thecoribird@gmail.com

A “Gofundme” Page has been created to raise funds in this time of need: 

https://www.gofundme.com/wolfgangs-final-expenses

Important links: 

Memorial Service for Eric Belser (Wolfgang Starcke) – Face book event page

Memorial Page for Eric Belser (Wolfgang Starcke)

 

Categories: SCA news sites

Call for Applicants – Society Communications Officer

East Kingdom Gazette - Sun, 2018-01-28 08:20

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. is seeking candidates for the position of Board Communications Officer, which will be a 3-year warranted term of service. The successful candidate will be primarily responsible for external and internal communications from the Board of Directors and Corporate Officers

Key Responsibilities

  • Create and curate posts, press releases, and official announcements from the SCA Board of Directors and the its officers.
  • Ensure the consistency of messaging internally and externally.

Qualifications

  • Experience in communications in an organization; nonprofit a plus.
  • Proficient in WordPress and some knowledge of HTML preferred.
  • Copywriting and editing ability.
  • Expertise with social media and networking sites.

Candidate Profile

  • A passion for, and commitment to, effective communication within the SCA.
  • Organized, detail-oriented, ability to prioritize multiple projects.
  • Outgoing, energetic, and accepting personality.
  • Internet/Telephone access

Applicants must be paid members of the Society and able to travel to board meetings as requested by the Board.

Hard copies of résumés (both professional and SCA related, including offices held and honors) must be sent to the attention of ‘Communications Officer’, SCA, Inc., P.O. Box 360789, Milpitas, CA 95036-0789. Electronic courtesy copies should also be sent to resumes@sca.org. The deadline for submissions is March 20, 2018.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc.  Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Fun with World War I digitization

History Blog - Sat, 2018-01-27 22:40

Quick summary of the day: digitization was a blast and the exhibition of World War I propaganda posters at the Bruce Museum was a gem.

The first thing we did was register with the immensely courteous, enthusiastic and efficient digitization crew from the Connecticut State Library. We sat for a few minutes waiting for a specialist to become available, enjoying a variety of quality cookies and coffee. The wait was minimal. I don’t think I got 3 sips down before our digitization pro was ready for us.

A veteran himself, he was very interested in the medals from France and the Red Cross that the formidable ladies had been awarded in 1919. He asked my relative everything she knew about them and she filled in all the information she could while we looked up the online census data for details like date of birth and death. He was particularly fascinated with the certificate that accompanied one of the awarded medals. It was in Cyrillic letters, but a variant, not the standard ones you see today.

The certificate was cracked and torn and in very delicate condition, taped to white poster paper in a most precarious way. Project manager Christine Pittsley came over and was so intrigued by the certificate that she took a photo and uploaded it to Instagram in the hope of enlisting the power of the web to identify and translate the wording.

Hmmm…a mystery at the @brucemuseum Serbian Red Cross? What does this certificate say? And what did Mademoiselle Alix Causse do to be awarded these medals? #ww1 #wwi #worldwar1 #redcross #serbian #medals #serbia

A post shared by Remembering World War One (@ctinww1) on Jan 27, 2018 at 12:10pm PST

No answers so far on what the certificate is saying. We were able to identify the medal and language as Serbian — talk about being in the thick of things — but it would be so great to know the reason for the medal. We know she and her sister volunteered for the Red Cross and worked building orphanages during the war. They were also in France at some point.

The certificate and all of the medals were scanned in a high-resolution tiff scanner and professionally photographed with one of those cool blazing lights-black umbrellas setups. The staff were so conscientious and careful with these treasures, making sure there would be no harm done in the process of documenting World War I family memories.

I asked the person at the registration desk how the day had gone and she said there was a great turnout, with people coming in a brisk pace as soon as the event began at noon. We were at the museum checking out the exhibitions until it closed at 5:00, and the staff were still packing up even though the scanning period ended at 4:00. It was a real joy to see people so dedicated to preserving memorabilia and memories and residents so enthusiastic about keeping their family histories alive.

Coming up tomorrow, the Bruce Museum’s small but impeccable World War I poster collection.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Writing a Good Award Recommendation

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sat, 2018-01-27 17:38

By THL Madoc Arundel

One of the privileges of belonging to the SCA is that anyone may recommend anyone else for any award. As an armiger (someone with an Award of Arms or higher), I believe that it is not only my privilege but my duty to recommend people in whom I find merit. While I have never been royalty, I have been a member of at least one polling order for more than 15 years and have read some sketchy recommendations. I am also married to a royal peer who has shared stories of recommendations that left her with more questions than answers regarding a nominee.

I will preface the remainder of this article by stating that I was an officer in the US Air Force for 25 years. For 14 of those years, I was responsible for writing and processing award packages based on someone’s recommendation. For another 4 of those years, I was part of several consideration boards that determined whether awards were approved. Many of the same factors that go into military awards and decorations apply to organizations such as the SCA. I would like to share some tips for writing awards recommendations that give the royalty/baronage as well as the members of polling orders sufficient information to determine a nominee’s suitability as a potential award recipient.

First of all, royalty cannot possibly know everybody in the kingdom. Therefore, it is important when writing a recommendation to provide enough information to familiarize the royalty with the individual. Local group, persona and time period, number of years in the SCA, if they have lived in other kingdoms, how long they have lived here and in what other kingdoms they may have had an impact: all of this helps paint a picture of the person. This also provides information that can be useful in writing an appropriate scroll. A recommendation may even include a recent event at which the royalty or members of a polling order may have had cause to meet this person. For example, “You may have seen Janice teaching ‘Medieval Muckraking: Not Just For Politicians’ at War Practice in May”; “Peter was one of your retainers at Crown Tournament. He was wearing the purple and green lozengy codpiece.”

Next, while it is important to highlight any relevant offices the individual may hold or have held in the past, as well as any projects on which they worked or activities they may have staffed, this alone is not enough. It’s wonderful to know that Richard has been the herald for the last five years, but all that tells the royalty is that no one else wanted the job. It does not tell us whether Richard was effective in the position. In the mundane world, when writing a performance report or review, a key factor is writing what are called “impact statements” or – in government-speak – “cause and effect statements.” These are statements with 4 very clear and distinct parts.

The first part is identifying the role of the individual: “Richard has been our shire herald for the last five years.”

The next part is identifying something that the individual has done in that role that was of some significance. “When he first took over the job, our shire had not had a submission considered by the Garnet office for almost a year. Richard immediately set to work to clear up the backlog of submissions.”

Next is the actual impact: did the individual succeed and what was the impact on the target community? “As a result, within four months, all of the previous submissions had been processed, and more than half our shire now has registered names and armoury.”

Lastly, has the individual continued the same level or greater over time, or did the project conclude? “Richard now holds quarterly consult meetings at his house, and has not had any quarter go by without at least one submission considered by Garnet.” OR “Although Richard has moved on to become a kingdom herald-at-large, his efforts to organize the shire office made it much easier for his successor to step in with no interruption in service to the local group.”

For lesser awards, such as an AoA or one of the AoA-level orders, one or two impact statements may be enough. For polling orders, several such statements may need to be included to reach the level of activity expected of the higher-level order. Polling orders also like to see impact over a longer period of time, with some consistency and improvement as the individual progresses.

Here are two sample statements. The first is a statement I have seen many times in one form or another in recommendations. The second is one possible example of how it should read.

“Marilyn does wonderful work. She is always so cheerful. She has taught at the last four Æcademies and War Practice, and is always willing to help someone who wants to learn more about her art.”

Obviously, Marilyn is a lovely person … but the recommendation says nothing about her level of performance, her consistency, her improvement over time, or her impact on the community. Let’s try it again with actual impact statements:

“Marilyn does wonderful work. Compared to her entry in the A&S display at Agincourt two years ago, the effects of both her research and practice show massive improvement. At A&S Faire last month, I examined her work and found the quality to be consistent throughout the piece, documented period materials used, and the addition of some flourishes from a related craft in the same location and time period. Her documentation even included examples of how the piece would have been used in her chosen country and time, and included three primary source documents. Although I have not attended any of her classes, I have spoken with some of her former students who have stated that her instruction is clear and concise, and that she has supported each portion of her conjecture with facts from reputable sources. She even took time near the end of the class to do some practical demonstrations of the techniques she had discussed. It seems that she is popular among adherents of her craft because of the number of repeat students she has from one event to the next. This speaks to improvements in both her technique and her research, as each iteration of the class has the students learning something that was not available in previous iterations.”

Wordy? Yup. But guess what – it cites specific achievements, specific improvements over time, and specific benefits to the community.

Finally, it is important that the recommendation be appropriate for the award. For the most part, the SCA has three “tracks”: Martial, A&S, and Service. There is a lot of crossover between these tracks, and within each track there are multiple avenues (e.g., Martial = heavy, fencing, archery, siege, thrown weapons). When choosing justification for an award recommendation, ensure that the justification is appropriate. For example, a heraldic artist may be nominated for an A&S award for doing period research and producing period-appropriate heraldic art. The same artist may be nominated for a service award for using their research and their skills to provide support for heraldic submissions or for the shield tree used at Crown Tournaments. It is important to make the distinction, since it would not be appropriate for the same achievement to be used to justify two different awards.

THL Madoc Arundel is the current Garnet Herald of Æthelmearc and has served in a variety of offices at various levels in ten different kingdoms. He is a member of three polling orders: the Millrind and the Fleur from Æthelmearc and the Silver Hammer from Calontir.

Christopher Miller is a retired US Air Force officer, former small business owner, and current Social Studies teacher. He has twenty years’ experience writing award recommendations for the military and employee performance reports for the government/military and private industry.

 

Categories: SCA news sites

SCA, Inc.: Board Statement on Hate Speech

East Kingdom Gazette - Sat, 2018-01-27 17:37

The Society for Creative Anachronism strongly condemns hate speech in any form by any officers and participants of this organization. The SCA was founded on and continues to be governed by the concepts of chivalry and honor, and strives to include and be respectful of all people, regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and politics. All participants are reminded of and expected to hold to these principles in participating in this organization and interacting with other people in person and in all forums, regardless of media.

The Board of Directors has heard the concerns of many people regarding the use of hate symbols in the SCA. The Board is concerned about this matter and has tasked the President of the SCA to immediately investigate. The President has the full confidence of the Board, and the Board will act as necessary to protect the participants of the SCA and to ensure that chivalry, honor, and respect for all continue to govern the organization.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc.  Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

SCA, Inc.: Request for Commentary – Mission Statement

East Kingdom Gazette - Sat, 2018-01-27 17:34

Currently open for commentary is a proposal to expand the Society’s Mission Statement.

The Mission Statement currently reads as follows:

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. (SCA) is an international organization devoted to the research and re-creation of pre-seventeenth century life, employing knowledge of history to enrich participants’ lives and the lives of others through events, demonstrations, and other educational venues.

The proposed revision reads as follows:

The Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. (the “Society”) is a 501(c)3 Educational Not-for-Profit organization devoted to the study of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. As a living history group, the Society provides an environment in which members can recreate various aspects of the culture and technology of the period, as well as doing more traditional historical research.

The Society’s mission is to promote the research and re-creation of pre-seventeenth century life, employing knowledge of history to enrich the lives of participants and others through live events and other educational venues.

In pursuing this mission, the Society is committed to excellence in its programs and activities and to

∙ act in accordance with the chivalric virtues of honor and service;
∙ value and respect the worth and dignity of all individuals;
∙ practice inclusiveness and respect pluralism and diversity;
∙ promote a safe and respectful environment for all Society events;
∙ act with transparency, fairness, integrity and honesty;
∙ be a responsible steward of Society resources; and,
∙ be committed to maintaining the trust of its members and participants.

It is the expectation of the Society that its members and participants, in all events and activities of the Society, will conduct themselves in accordance with these tenets.

****

Comments may also be emailed to comments@lists.sca.org. Please use “Mission Statement” in the subject line. Comments may also be mailed to the attention of ‘Attn: Mission Statement’, SCA, Inc., P.O. Box 360789, Milpitas, CA 95036-0789.

Commentary will be accepted until April 1, 2017.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc.  Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Planned web page downtime at SCA.org

East Kingdom Gazette - Sat, 2018-01-27 11:50

“SCA.org will be offline (due to) a planned hardware migration starting Friday, February 9, 2018 around 22:00 (10:00 pm) Central Time. We expect to be back online by Saturday, February 10 by 9:00 am.

We apologize for any inconvenience.”