A Brief History of Storvik and the Surrounding Area
By Master Stefan of Cambion
The Barony of Storvik is a part of the Kingdom of Atlantia, one of 19 kingdoms within the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. (SCA). The SCA is an international not-for-profit educational organization dedicated to researching and re‑creating the arts and skills of pre-17th-century Europe, with over 30,000 members residing in countries around the world. Members, dressed in clothing of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, attend events which may feature tournaments, arts exhibits, classes, workshops, dancing, feasts, and more. Our royalty hold courts at which they recognize and honor members for their contributions to the group.
The SCA started in California in 1966, when a group of friends in a backyard tried to recreate a medieval tournament. Here is an article on the first event. The concept was popular and groups started forming around the country. The East Kingdom was founded in 1968 and covered all the east coast and eastern Canada. Atlantia was originally a principality within the East and became an independent kingdom in 1981. It includes Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and a little of Georgia.
The first group in what is now the Kingdom of Atlantia was the Barony of Myrkwood, founded January 9, 1971 within the East Kingdom, and which included almost all of the current kingdom. One factor in the Storvik area was the prior presence of the Markland Medieval Mercenary Militia (named after one of the Viking settlements in North America). It was founded in 1969 at the University of Maryland. Another factor was that SCA groups could not cross state lines at that time, so separate groups had to be formed.
The earliest group in the DC area was Torhvassir ‑ Watergate in German (it was formed in DC in the mid‑seventies, when the place was prominent and it was also near the George Washington University campus where they met). Aster shire in the Northern Virginia suburbs had an aster on the device, satisfying a desire to have a flower on it while referring to the area abbreviation of NoVa (i.e. a star). In the Maryland suburbs, there was Murklndr, a canton, then a shire, of mostly Marklanders, in Southern Maryland, and Caer Cladach (Rockville in Gaelic), another shire in the same area nearer D.C.. The SCA said form one shire, so Seagate was founded, including Montgomery, Prince George’s, Charles, Calvert and St. Mary’s counties (all on the water). Permission was obtained to form a “charter” barony, having no territory itself, of the three shires. This was Storvik (Norse for great bay), which later became a regular barony when the SCA allowed groups to cross state lines, at which point the shires merged out of existence, although Torvassir remained a college.
Storvik was one of the groups constituting the Principality of Atlantia on its creation in 1977 within the East Kingdom. Atlantia became a kingdom in 1981.
The SCA proved very popular in this area and Storvik grew to over 300 paid members by the late 1980s, which was 1/60th of the entire worldwide SCA. Several groups have formed and split off since then. Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties are the Barony of Dun Carraig. This is Scots-Gaelic for stone fort. Most of Montgomery County is now the Shire of Roxbury Mill. Northern Virginia (Fairfax, Arlington, and Alexandria) is now the Barony of Ponte Alto, high bridge in Italian.
A History of the Embroidered Morse on the Baroness’s Cloak
BY Baron Rorik Fredericsson
When the Baronial Charter was being written we didn’t have a name for our new Barony. In those pre-PC days word processors were main frame computers and there was a Gentle who had access to one of these machines. Wherever the future Barony name was called for he put ;;;;;;; [seven semi-colons] for easy search and replace. So at the beginning we were the Barony of Seven Semi-colons. Ragnarr Thorvaldson and Ysabeau Cameron wanted the honor of being the founding Baron/Baroness and no one else had strong opinions so they tossed a coin to decide who became Seneschal and who became Founder. The office symbols by the figures show who won what. The coin and the seven semi-colons are central to the design on the embroidered cloak morse.