Lilies-Wr-Hst-art - 12/13/13
"Lilies Wars - A completely unofficial history" by Valens of Flatrock. (I-XI)
This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.
This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org
I have done a limited amount of editing. Messages having to do with separate topics were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the message IDs were removed to save space and remove clutter.
The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make no claims as to the accuracy of the information given by the individual authors.
Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these messages. The copyright status of these messages is unclear at this time. If information is published from these messages, please give credit to the originator(s).
Mark S. Harris AKA: THLord Stefan li Rous
Stefan at florilegium.org
From: valens at COX.NET
Subject: [CALONTIR] The History of Lilies part 1
Date: May 12, 2011 4:11:02 PM CDT
To: CALONTIR at listserv.unl.edu
With Lilies now a month away I thought a person of two might be interested in a brief history of how it came to be.
A completely unofficial history
By Valens of Flatrock
In the winter of AS XXI (1986) a group of Calontir fighters began discussing the idea that would eventually evolve into what we now know as the War of the Lilies. For a variety of reasons and motives these individuals wanted to create an event that might become the seed of an on going war within the borders of Calontir. An event that would be our own local war, involving less driving, less political tension, and a chance to experiment with new tactics for the Calontir army in an environment we could control.
Figure 1 About half the Calontir army at Pennsic XII
Since Pennsic 12 the Kingdom had focused on a yearly pilgrimage to the lands of the East Kingdom for the conflict that was simply "the war" for most people in AS XXI. Pennsic 12 had seen the Principality of Calontir make it first official presence for the Middle Kingdom under Prince Humpk. The famous Pennsic Bus made the trip from Forgotten Sea, to Standing Stone, and through Three Rivers on the journey to the Debatable Lands. Largely through the efforts of Master Crag Duggin, Calontir camped together as a Principality rather than scattering to the various household camps that had been the traditional norm for the event. For the first time Calontir fought as a unit on one of the bridges and made a memorable stand against the Tuchux and others. (There had been a small Calontir group at Pennsic 11 who fought together during the Field Battle.)
It was during this war that the announcement was made that Calontir would become a Kingdom leading to much rejoicing and some foolish consumption of Pavel's homemade kumas.
Pennsic 13 saw the first appearance of the shiny new Kingdom of Calontir at Pennsic War. Fighting under our new monarchs, Chepe and Arwyn there was little doubt that we would be allies of the Middle Kingdom. Once again Calontir made a lasting impression on both sides with an epic 3 hour stand on the bridges with our new "shield wall" and scutums. We knew that Calontir had brought a new type of army to the great war in the east when nearing the climax of the Bridge Battle, His Majesty, Chepe was to be found under a scutum in the center of our line holding not the bridge we had been assigned but the neighboring bridge where we had been asked to help. The army that had been less than 40 fighters the previous year had almost doubled. During the intervening year the War College had been created and Calontir had made great strides in developing the concept of a Royal Army designed and built to fight at Pennsic War.
In AS XX, Humpk and Mammara led the army off to Pennsic 14. We once again fought beside the Middle Kingdom winning renown in the Woods Battle and once again in the Bridge Battle. During the previous year the role of the War College had been more clearly defined and strengthened. The idea of companies and other more elaborate specialized organizations within the army were taking shape. The Bird of Prey newsletter had been created to share ideas and evaluate the army in a systematic way.
For Pennsic 15, Asgeirr and Miriam chose to fight for the East, marking a major moment in the independence of our Kingdom as we completely broke the apron strings of our former parent Kingdom. This was also the first time the "Levy" was called by Their Majesties for the Pennsic War. The most lasting memory of the war might be the evolution of the Camp from Hell, as a part of the Calontir encampment. There are numerous notable events associated with that encampment, but most cannot be discussed publicly, as many of the participants are still alive. In the winter of 1986, William and Mammara were once again preparing to lead us off to Pennsic XVI. The site fee was $20 ($5 discount for members), for the weekend plus $3 for each additional day. Where we would feast on pizza amid the climatic Pass Battle.
To the far west only recently Calontir had discovered the Estrella War.
In the spring of 1986 Edward Cire had led the first small band of adventurers westward to Estrella II. The V'tavian Smithy bus made the slow but entertaining trip to the lands of Atenveldt and for the first time Calontir fighters heard tales about the "burning sands" of Estrella and a very different sort of war. A war where shopping, archery, and royal courts took a back seat to fighting a bunch of battles each day of the war. A simpler war that did not require land allotments, did not cost a fortune, the politics were simpler, (remember rule number 1), and was just generally more casual in its attitude. The next year Gabriel ap Morgan led a much larger force to the desert. More tales were carried home, and more people in Calontir began to think in terms of a Known World with more than one great war each year. And if there could be more than one why couldn't there be one right here in the center of the Known World.
Calontir had already taken the first steps towards creating a home grown war. A series of Baronial wars had been fought prior to the first Lilies War. The Vatavian-Forgotten Sea War had been fought during the Principality days. That war had seen the first shield wall of scutums, put together by the Vatavians and their Ansteorran allies.
The first war within the new Kingdom of Calontir was the Three Rivers-Forgotten Sea conflict, which saw some complex scenarios intended to integrate archery into the victory conditions. The War For all the Cookies saw the Canton of Crescent Moon fighting to free itself from the Barony of Forgotten Sea. Two Triation Wars would pit the three groups that made up the Triade and their Lizard Emperor against the rest of Calontir.
An interesting connection was that a fund raiser at the second Triation War was sponsored by former Queens to raise money for the feast at Lilies VI. Donations were taken for the opportunity to dunk His Grace Shadan (in a prom dress), Master Pavel, His Grace Lorell and myself in a dunking tank filled with water only a few degrees above freezing. A good time was not had by all.
Some of these were held before the first War of the Lilies and others during the years when no one still quite realized that Lilies would become "the" Calontir summer event. They all contributed ideas, and enthusiasm throughout the Kingdom for a fun war that we could call our own.
Where have all the Wars gone?
There were many other wars that I did not mention, both before the creation of the first Lilies and in the roughly four years after that first event. Calontir found nearly endless reasons to line up for friendly warfare among ourselves. It is an unfortunate fact that the success of Lilies has apparently killed off many smaller conflicts within the Kingdom.
Lilies War I
Theme: Prince against the King
King and Queen: William Vatavia and Mammara Leona of Egypt
Prince and Princess: Valens of Flatrock and Susannah Griffon
Site: Carlsby (State Park)
Date: May 30-31, 1987, (A.S. XXII) Memorial Day Weekend
Autocrat: Roderick Fitzdrake
Site Fee: $1 per person plus $2 per car per day and $2 per tent per day
Attendance: Approximately 260 people
The seed of Lilies I was planted by Earl Edward Cire of Greymoor and entrusted to Roderick Fritzdrake for its original execution. Earl Cire was listed as the autocrat of the event and served as the chief organizer of the event. His work in talking up the idea and the scenario was invaluable in building support for the first war and lead directly to the eventual success of the entire concept of a Calontir War. The concept of the first war was presented to the Calontir War College at the regular summer War Maneuvers event held during the summer of 1986 in the Shire of Thousand Hills. The concept of the first war would be built around creating two equal forces from the fighters of Calontir.
An elaborate selection process was created to ensure equality of the sides by first drawing the names of the seven royal fighting peers of the Kingdom. Next every member of the chivalry in the Kingdom were drawn for one of the two sides, (excepting His Majesty William who would command one side in the conflict.) Squires and other household members were expected to fight with their knights. The four baronies were then drawn at random. Any fighters not part of a knight's household were expected to fight under the banner of their barony. The cantons of the baronies were expected to fight with their respective baronies. The shires of the Kingdom were then drawn for the two sides.
Finally for any fighter who did not feel a loyalty to an existing group, the five states that make up Calontir were drawn at random and assigned to the two sides. No provision was made for fighters from outside of the Kingdom in determining the two sides as it was assumed they would be a small number and would not significantly alter the balance of forces.
The random selection worked towards creating two equal forces but it also was a means of dealing with a deep concern that any division of the young Kingdom along geographic lines might lead to divisions that could become permanent. There was an early determination that the war should never become North versus South or East versus West. Particularly during the early years when the new Kingdom seemed much more fragile and no one was sure if the future organization of Calontir would or should include Principalities or other sub-divisions.
The next issue to be dealt with was the leadership of the two sides. Earl Cire put forth the idea based on the English War of the Roses and the idea of a war between members of the Royal family. It was this idea that led to the eventual name of the event. Instead of using the historic image of an English rose, Earl Cire chose the Lily, because of its connections to Calontir.
His Majesty, William Vatavia would lead one side on the field. Master Pavel served as His Majesties general during the battle. The Prince would become the leader of the second side. This was a rather risky arrangement since Crown Tournament would not be held until the week before the planned War. If the Prince could not or would not lead the opposition against his own King others would have to be tapped to become leaders. Until the Prince had been chosen Earl Cire would work to organize the side of the "Loyal Opposition" and if necessary serve as general for that side.
Even before the battle began there was a group of fighters who objected to the idea of fighting against their King and were worried about the label rebels or traitors. The term "loyal opposition" was used to label the Prince's side but did little to sooth the problems. There was a wide spread feeling that it would be a bad thing for the side of His Majesty to lose this scenario. It was probably fortunate that I (Valens of Flatrock) won Crown Tournament. The long friendship between myself and William, made it easier to approach the scenario without serious problems. Despite that there were some fighters on the King's side that took the scenario more seriously than the fighters on the side of the "loyal opposition."
The last major issue to be decided was the scenario of the war. Earl Cire and his advisors looked at the traditional battles of Pennsic and the battles they had fought in at Estrella but opted for a more ambitious recreation for Lilies. The goal of the scenario was to recreate more of the elements of medieval warfare than could be found in the set-piece engagements of other wars. One of the issues that related to the scenario selection was the idea of using War of the Lilies as part of the War College efforts to better train the Calontir army for Pennsic. The War College had recently lost the traditional site for War Maneuvers in the Shire of Thousand Hills and when it at first seemed that the War of the Lilies would fall on a three day weekend there was considerable discussion about combining the two events.
The site for the war was north of Topeka, Kansas, at the Perry Lake State Park. The autocrat was Roderick Fitzdrake, (Count Roderick Mandrake) for the event. It was a camping event, without a feast, cabins, or any arrangements for indoor activities. Attendance for the event was officially listed as 254 paid adults.
The scenario: The field included a long wooded ridge and several small fields scattered over a couple hundred acres of land. Each side would have a small fort built out of hale bales and surrounded by a moat, that could be crossed by fighters on their knees. The two forts where separated by more than a hundred yards of wooded land that prevented the two sides from seeing or engaging each other unless they left the defensive position of their fortress. At the top of the wooded ridge, (roughly another hundred yard walk up a heavily wooded hill) near the camping area was the resurrection point for most of the fighters. Each side could obtain from the resurrection point two bags of supplies every thirty-minutes. The troops in the fortress were required to hand over one bag of supplies every thirty minutes or they were declared dead due to starvation.
Non-noble fighters were able to resurrect by reaching the resurrection point at the top of the ridge and rejoin the fight at any point. When noble fighters and members of the chivalry were killed they reported to a separate tent at the lower end of the fighting area. Here they were given snacks, drinks and shade while they waited to be ransomed before they were allowed to resurrect. It was envisioned that the scenario would continue for several hours. Victory conditions included points for capturing and holding the forts, resurrection of fighters, and accumulated supplies in the forts.
The battle began with 50+ fighters on each side and was continued for three hours as one long scenario. Generally the scenario was a great success. There was fighting around both forts, along the supply lines, and in the open areas between the two forts. The resurrection of fighters, supplies, and the forts all worked well. The Loyal opposition began by leaving their fort only lightly guarded and sent
Court a Lilies I:
most of their forces into the woods separating the two armies. This allowed them to build up their reserve of "food" quickly and deny the Royal armies supplies to their fort where most His Majesty's army held a defensive position. Time and distance eventually wore down the Loyal Opposition until past the mid-way point of the scenario the Royal forces sortied out their fort and not only re-supplied their fort but captured the fort of the Prince. Regardless of who was winning or losing, for most of the fighters there was lots of fighting across a widely varied set of terrain, quick resurrections, and nothing but friends on the other side. One of the few problems that showed up during the scenario was with the rules about ransoms for the knights and nobility on both sides. There was some unhappiness with how slow the ransom process worked and the limited amount of fighting they got to do.
One of the key historical notes of this event was the very early use of combat archery for the Kingdom of Calontir. At the War For all the Cookies, held a couple of weeks earlier, had been the first use of combat archery within the Kingdom of Calontir. At the War of the Lilies, Lorell of Shrewsbury, (the then Archer General for the Kingdom) and a few others brought out their bows and the first generation 'golf tube" arrows, along with javelins for this battle.
The "War" ended with the King's side winning an overwhelming victory by capturing the one and only war point.
The Golden Swan and the Demo-bison
Off the field the Crown held a meeting of the AoA level arts order, then known as the Order of the Swan. The Society Herald's office had rejected the name of the order and seemed likely to reject the replacement name, the Trilliam Argentius. A general discussion was held with the members of the Order, regarding possible new names for the order. From the dim past of the Region of Calontir emerged the favorite beast of Baron Stephen Ironhand, the mythical demo-bison. (There is a great song floating around the dusty pages of Calontir history by Syr Conn MacNiel called Bison's Brace that explains more of this connection.) For a brief moment the arts order was going to be represented by a beast whose most frightening attack was a vile cloud of intestinal gas. The loudest voices in the tent came close to passing the new symbol, however eventually the quieter voices did prevail and a more artsy alternative, the Silver Swallow was chosen.
This too would later fail to pass Corporate level but eventually an acceptable version of the Golden Swan was adopted for the Kingdom AoA level arts award.
The Legendary Demo-Bison of Baron Stephen Ironhand:
That evening in Court some awards given to names you might recognize.
Alyson Throckmorton---------------- a Torse
Liriel Correll of Tuatha Keep------ a Lily
Elizabeth de Rossignol ------------ a Calon Cross
Hertha Blair of Froggestow--------- a Silver Hammer
Cire Greymoor---------------------- a Pelican
And Pavel Iosefovich ------------------ a Trilliam Argentus (he missed being a demo-bison by so little)
Generally people left the event with no idea that there would be another War of the Lilies.
Since no one complained too loudly here is the next part.
Keep in mind that I am writting these under the handicap of a weak mind and bad eyes, or maybe the other way around. Bad eyes, mean that if didn't happen within fifty feet of me it apparently didn't happen. My goal is to reprint these next year with lots of additions that have been contributed from others who were there. If my version of history does not match yours, please send me stuff. The printed version I put together has the Mews flyers, letters, site books, tee shirts, and other booklets created for the different events. Anyone with pictures or other materials that I could include would be welcomed.
Lilies War II
Theme: Barons of Calontir versus the Former Rulers (Region to Kingdom)
King and Queen: Thorvald the Golden and Branwyn Whiteraven
Prince and Princess: Lorell of Shrewsbury and Zenobia of Rebelswood
Site: Carlsby (Camp Hammond)
Date: May 28th to Monday May 30th, 1988 (a long holiday weekend)
Autocrat: Bryce le Raton and Alyson Throckmorton
Site Fee: $6 for members, $7 for non-members plus $2 per night for a bed in one of the cabins
Attendance: 344 total attendance
While the idea of a war between the Crown Prince and the King had not worked well, but nearly everyone liked the idea of a Calontir War. All that seemed necessary was to create a little guidance to have a second version of The Lilies War for the following summer. One of the new ideas that came away from the event was the concept of some level of Crown involvement in the event to avoid it becoming associated with a particular group.
The idea of how to improve the idea of Lilies was a frequent subject of discussion during the summer and fall. The members of the War College discussed future formats of the war and how to create a event that could support itself with scenarios, financing, and sponsorship. The theme of this event was largely the idea of the winter Crown, Valens and Susannah. That method of creating themes would continue for several years until the Lilies Committee was created before Lilies VI.
Once again it would be a weekend event, with battles on both Saturday and Sunday. This site had a few cabins in addition to camping space around the center part of the site. Because of how small the central area is the fighting and archery was moved to the area usually used for parking at most events at the camp since then. (Camp Hammond has been used for many events since then by both Carlsby and Crescent Moon.) One of the best things about the camp was the heavily wooded area around the center camping area that could be used for a couple of memorable woods battle scenarios.
The two sides were based on the nobles of Calontir. The Former Rulers from the Warlords to the previous Kings would make up one side. The other side would be the Landed Barons and the Court Barons of the Kingdom. The current king was excluded from the two sides to avoid so of the loyalty issues that had been a problem at the previous war. At that time it worked out that the two sides had an equal number of leaders, (13 on each side), although there was a problem with some of the principals such as His Grace William of V'tavia who had been the founding Baron of V'tavia and chose to support his local group. Both sides were responsible for recruiting fighters and archers for their armies. The Barons made tabards, dinners, and all kinds of other wild promises to lure the unsuspecting to their banners. The nobles, mostly based on households of Ternon and Brumbar expended little effort to recruit outside of their households and were confident they mighty personas would lead masses of worshipping followers to their banners without need of cheap bribes. We were so, so wrong! Included is the ad placed in the Mews by Baron Stephen Ironhand to recruit support. Baron Pavel shamelessly used his office as Earl Marshal of the Kingdom to recruit support for his force, (see his letter in the February AS XXII Mews).
The Breakfast of Champions:
Each of the chief participants were allowed to either fight for themselves or select a champion for the battle. Both sides were limited to swords carried on their belt or weapons found on a breakfast table. Both sides began seated at a long table with His Majesty at the head of the table. His Majesty played the part of mediator in an attempt to avoid fighting. After a short verbal exchange His Majesty gave in to the inevitable and called lay-on. Fighters got to act out the movie fighting scenes by jumping up on the table, a couple almost got hit in the ankles doing this. There is a great picture of Halidar and I standing on top of the table and beating Syr Richard into the ground. The side of the former rulers quickly won the first point of the war.
To mark the contestants and to show who the various champions were fighting for, leather coronets of the various individual nobles were made by Susannah Griffon and worn on the helmets of all the fighters. Special permission was given by the Crown for the non-nobles in the group to wear the regalia of their noble sponsors for this battle and in all the contests of the war where they we serving as champions.
The Field Battle:
The Field Battle showed how much more successful the Barons had been at recruiting forces. The former rulers had largely believed the propaganda of the Baron's about how much of an advantage the former rulers would have on the fighting fields and had been willing to trust in their boundless martial prowess to win the day. The ultimate reckoning however showed that the majority of the former rulers had come from the households of either Brumbar or Ternon and the army they had assembled amounted to little more than those two households and a very few friends. Trusting in their own individual superiority they were reluctant to beg for help in the face of long odds, (until after the first couple of serious beatings.) The households of the Former Rulers were badly outnumbered and in the open field were quickly run down and killed by the much larger and better organized Baron's. All the field battle proved was who was the slowest among those two households as the hordes of hired thugs descended on the tiny royal army.
The Bridge Battle:
The Bridge battle gave the Former Rulers a better chance to fight a very limited front battles. With overwhelming numbers the Baron's felt obligated to attack on the narrow bridge which put them in range of the archers along the far bank while fighting virtually out of range of their own archery support. In a close battle the Former Rulers managed to win the battle.
The Woods Battle:
The Sunday morning, Woods Battle was the most unusual of the battles. Each of the Barons and the Former Rulers, (or their champions), were given a leather coronet to wear on their helmet. Killing the wearer and capturing the coronets was the goal of the game. So there were thirteen points on each side to be captured. A time limit was set but it was expected that one side or the other would capture all the coronets before the time limit was reached. For this battle the sides were more even, however the forces of the Baron's eventually tracked down and captured every coronet of the other side to win the battle point.
Historical Note: This war saw the first use of those unholy weapons of mass destruction the fiberglass spear. Although at this point in time there were a few ten foot and longer rattan spears on the field. In a world without face-thrusts they were not very effective.
There were points for the Archery Champions from both sides and a War Point for the total score of a populace shoot. Both shoots were held on Sunday of the war in the same area where the Bridge Battle and Fortress Battle was fought to encourage as many people to participate as was possible.
The Heraldic Point
There were a couple of unusual non-fighting points for this War. Before the first battle (The Field Battle) Their Majesties awarded a war point to the unit which created the best Heraldic Display. This included non-combatants, banners, tabards, shields, and accompanying heralds to announce units onto the field. With leaders such as Baron Stephen Ironhand and Baron Charles Stuart O'Conner fighting for the Baronial side there was little doubt who would win this point and they did not disappoint anyone.
The Drinking Point- (the first and the last)
Saturday night witnessed the contesting of what would become the one and only Drinking Point of any War of the Lilies. The idea was taken from a popular event held every year at Pennsic in the tavern operated by Duke Andrew of Seldomrest. Teams attempted to down small glasses of beer, or a variety of alternative drinks in a relay in the shortest amount of time. Slower teams were eliminated and faster teams advanced, (often it was hard to tell if getting to compete again and again was a good thing or not.) The winning team often was somewhat worse for the experience at the end of the evening. In the current politically correct environment of the SCA and the country as a whole it is hard to imagine how different the world was twenty years ago when this was an official part of the war points and advertised in the event flyer.
Generally the Barons had done a much better job of recruiting fighters and archers for the war and they triumphed in most of the war points during the weekend. The forces of the Barons were the eventual winners of the war. See the shameless add on the page for the type of propaganda put out by the Barons along with a wide variety of payments, (bribes) they provided for their supporters.
The event also hosted Calontir's 10th Birthday party as a region. The "Region" marked the actual creation of the name "Calontir" and the first step towards what now know as this Kingdom becoming independent from our parent Kingdom of the Middle.
A few awards presented at Lilies II
Jonathan Hogue AoA
Adelith of Carlsby AoA
Garalee of Holywell Leather Mallet
Angus of Blackmoor Torse
Ariel of Glastonbury Tor Golden Swan
The site for this war and the next three wars would be commercial group camps which provided indoor facilities, showers, cabins, electrical facilities and other amenities. Over the next few years there would be a major debate about the necessity of using these limited and more expensive sites for future events. The leap from these commercial camping facilities to the more primitive site at Smithville Lake would require a lot of late night discussion and debate over the next four years.
Lilies War III
Theme: English versus French
King and Queen: Shadan Secarius and Alix Coeubois
Prince and Princess: Volkmar Katzalger and Isadora of Orange Woode
Site: Carlsby (Tall Oaks Conference Center)
Date: Friday June 30th to Tuesday July 4th , 1989, (a long holiday weekend)
Autocrat: Alysond Throckmorton and Bryce le Raton,
Site Fee: $10 for members and $15 for non-members. Cabins were available with reservations
Attendance: 389 people
At the close of Lilies II, Lorell and Zenobia took up the task of getting the next Lilies War off the ground. This set an informal precedent where the winter crown helped set up the basics of the event such as site, date, and autocrat team. The summer crown then dealt with the details like the final scenario, commanders, and other competitions to be held at the event. This was the general pattern of pre-event planning until the creation of the Lilies Committee. The Committee then took over the general event planning and worked with the summer Crowns regarding autocrats, scenarios, and the details of the event.
Once again the shire of Carlsby and Alysond Throckmorton led the autocrating staff for the event. The idea that this event was going to be something other than the normal event sponsored and planned by one of the regular Kingdom groups shows up for the first time in the Royal Letter appearing the September, AS XXIII Mews. Their Majesties, Lorell and Zenobia, announced that they had accepted the bid by Alyson and Bryce to host Lilies War III. This war also began a tradition that would last for a few years, of holding a meeting at Kris Kinder to determine the autocrat, theme, site, and other issues for the next war.
Exert from the Mews letter, February XXIII from the autocrats of Lilies III:
"The Scenario was decided on by His Majesty and Their Highnesses at Kris Kinder. It was designed to avoid fealty conflicts that have occurred at previous Lilies. The individual battles are being planned by the Crown and the War College, and more specific information will follow on this as well."
Their Majesties also selected the "Constables" to organize and command each side in the war. His Lordship Robert of Grand Loch for the French who then selected Lord Angus of Blackmoor as his General on the field. His Lordship Chrystofer Kensor served as commander for the English.
The site was another camp with cabins and camping areas. The event was moved to July 4th weekend in part to avoid a conflict with a growing interest in attending events in surrounding kingdoms on the Memorial Day weekend, (Grand Outlandish). It also allowed three extra days for other activities after the weekend since the July 4th holiday fell on Wednesday. The idea that large numbers of people would hang around after the war on the extra days did not work out well.
The theme of the event was once again largely the work of the Crown, this time the Summer Crown who would be reigning during the event, Their Majesties Shadan Secarius and Alix Coeurbois. They selected the leaders for the two sides and used their offices to promote the event. The people of the Kingdom were encouraged to support either the French or English sides in a informal recreation of the Hundred Years War. This challenged the image of many citizens of Calontir as fundamentally an early period Kingdom, but for the most part people found a place on one side or the other. Many of the people who found it objectionable to be either French or English would join the large Viking force.
One of the great and on going issues for Lilies War showed up at this event. Should the scenarios allow everyone or nearly everyone to decide what side they wanted to be on, (French versus English, Winter Queens Summer Queens, etc.) or should the scenario set out at least a general guide for what sides people are expected to support, (shires versus baronies, north versus south, etc. ). (Later wars have gone in a new direction with scenarios that change everyday and no established sides for the war.) For the first war everyone, except out of Kingdom fighters, had been assigned to one side or the other. (There was no real effort to enforce the divisions however.) For the second war everyone was free to choose what side they wanted to be on, except the nobles who were tapped to make up the leadership and expected to recruit fighters/archers for their sides. (As already mentioned there had been some of the nobles that followed loyalties to various groups when that conflicted with the side they had been assigned too in the scenario.) For this war only two leaders were assigned and they were expected to recruit individuals or units to their respective sides it was also hoped that individuals within the Kingdom would create entire units for either the French or English armies. In the Royal Letter from the then Royal Highnesses in the February AS XXIII Mews "any who wish to form units to help defend either side should start organizing now." Many individuals and small groups created units based on historical themes, (the Varingian guard recreated a Byzantine infantry unit, His Lordship Angus of Blackmoor organized a Gaelic and Celtic company, and a large Viking band took to the field. (I know there were other theme units on the field but I do not remember either their theme or the leaders involved.)
The most distinctive theme units on the field was the Varangian Guard with their matching kite shields, caps, and colorful outfits. The unit was the creation of Master Andrixos with the help of Sir Tristram and Master Gottfried.. Andrixos built matching kite shields and sewed capes for the entire unit which Sir Tristram painted. Master Gottfried made saexs as weapons for the unit. The unit also won the war point as the "Best Dressed Unit".
The largest theme unit on the field was the Viking band, (although it was closer to a mob than a "theme"). Led by Master Pavel and myself. Basically we didn't like the idea of being either English or French. While we didn't like the theme, that is the nature of the Lilies War theme every year. You cannot make everyone happy and anything that comes close is probably dumb. We appealed to anyone who might not feel comfortable with the later period personas that dominated the field at this war. We asked for round shields or kites along with short swords and axes. We also stressed that we did not want to fight in any logical manner, our version of beserkers on the loose in France. (Deep in our dark hearts we didn't want either side to win, late period fops that they were. That probably explains why we accidently attacked our own side a couple of times and once the two Viking regiments attacked each other.) Since most of our fighters did not actually have Viking personas we asked everyone to assume a Norse persona of either Helga or Sven. Pavel led the Sven regiment while I led the Helga unit in a series of mindless, (but fun) charges about the field with but one goal, "Kill Lorell", but that is another story. Pavel and I had expected three or four other rebels to join the unit, however when the first battle was lined up we had more than thirty fighters. We were later paid with a kiddie pool of ice and beer, the ice was appreciated, it being July in Kansas.
This was the first Lilies event with a notable contingent of people from the kingdom of the Outlands attending, made possible by moving the event from Memorial Day weekend to avoid a conflict with Grand Outlandish. There was even a letter from the leader of their traveling group, The Outlandish Trollish Road Survey Crew and Expeditionary PARTY in the May, Mews, preceding the event announcing their intention to contest the exact location of Calontir's western borders. Led by one Marcus the Vinter, this would mark a continuous involvement of visitors from our western neighbor in Lilies each year. There had been a few people from Meridies, (Kane Redfeather, as prince of Meridies, was the only visiting royalty at the First Lilies War), the Middle, Ansteorra, and the Outlands at previous events. The growing attendance by other kingdoms opened up discussions regarding future themes involving other kingdoms as a way to grow Lilies into an international event of real size to rival the other large wars around the Society.
The war once again featured the standard battles everyone was familiar with. A field battle, a bridge battle, a castle battle, (with combat archery), a champions battle, and a climatic woods battle. Victory in the conflict came down to the final woods battle as the previous four battles had been equally split between the two sides. The decision in the battle came down to the final seconds as the English forces captured the decisive banner from a small banner guard, led by his Lordship Halidor, deep in the woods.
One of the important issues that developed during the months before this event and in the next year was what role/responsibility Kingdom officers had in an event that was evolving from the regular local event into something else. Some Kingdom officers saw the growing size of Lilies War as a place where the input of the people in charge was absolutely necessary while others viewed the war as beyond their responsibility or the expectations of their office. Example: Should the Earl Marshal have some input or a veto power regarding the person selected to be Marshal in Charge at Lilies? Were Kingdom officers somehow directly responsible in overseeing the activities associated with their office at this event, i.e. Treasurer, Minister of Children, etc? Some autocrats would see this as an unnecessary interference while others would come to expect support from the Kingdom officers. This debate would float around for several years, (for some it may still be unresolved), and would largely be decided on an office by office basis.
In the August Mews, following the War, in Their Majesties', Volkmar's and Isadora's letter was a call for people to begin planning for the next War of the Lilies. Behind the scenes a informal core group had assumed the job of planning for the next war. Various themes were suggested, changes regarding dates, length, leadership were all discussed around post revels in the months following the event. There was still no formal group or planning process but Lilies III established the event as something that Calontir was going to continue. There seemed little doubt that Lilies would become a regular part of Calontir's summer.
A few awards presented at the Courts of Shadan and Alix. (There were two, morning and evening, another first for Lilies War)
Volkmar Katzbalger Knight
Gawain ap Tristam Iren Fyrd
Cormac MacCool AoA
Deotrich Hiltipard Iren Fyrd
Otto von Lothringen Iren Hirth
Liriel Corell of Tuatha Keep Calon Cross
Christopher Amber Calon Cross
Since the 4th of July holiday fell on the Tuesday, the planners of the event envisioned people spending the entire extended holiday weekend at the site. While the war officially end on Sunday, on the Monday and Tuesday there were tournaments, Scottish Games some classes and other activities at the site but they were not well atten
Lilies War IV
Theme: Laruals versus Pelicans
King and Queen: Tomeeki Mahoud Washi Yamiran and Fionna nic Alisdair
Prince and Princess: Gabriel ap Morgan and Hywela Ferch ferch Wyddel
Site: Forgotten Sea (Camp Odessa)
Date: Wednesday May 30th to Sunday June 3rd 1990, (this was not Memorial Day Weekend)
Autocrat: Valens of Flatrock
Site Fee: $1 per person plus $4 per night for camping. The total for 4 nights would equal $17 plus $1 per night for a bed in one of the cabins.
Attendance: 432 people (income for the event came to a total of negative 12 cents, it would be the only Lilies War that would lose money.)
The autocrating group in Carlsby asked to have the event moved to another sponsoring group. To help other groups cover the cost of the event the shire of Carlsby donated $1500 to the Kingdom as a start-up fund for smaller groups that might wish to host the war in future years. Between Lilies II and Lilies IV an informal group had grown up around the idea of ensuring the event continued and the general outline of the event developed along lines that they thought would be best for the Kingdom. Among that group it was generally agreed that the event should remain near the geographic center of the Kingdom. There was also a growing vision of an event that was sponsored by the Kingdom and controlled by some sort of Kingdom wide committee. It was this informal group that would later become the Lilies Committee.
During the winter following Lilies III this group began discussing future themes, goals for the event, and a basic set of guidelines for the future of the event. One of the biggest issues was the whether the future of Lilies was to eventually rival events such as Estrella and Pennsic or was the goal going to be to create a war for the people of Calontir?
I (Valens) volunteered to autocrat the next war and convinced the Barony of Forgotten Sea to sponsor the fourth War of the Lilies. Brother Cederic from the Shire of Lost Moor had connections with the church owned camp near Odessa, Missouri, (about 30 miles east of Kansas City on Interstate 70) which would become the site for the next two wars. At virtually every event that fall and winter around the Kingdom my staff worked to build up support for the war and find out what we could do to make it succeed. Almost every major idea or element of the event circled the campfires of Calontir for several months before they appeared as part of the plan.
A couple of the previous wars had been built around long holiday weekends in an effort to expand the possible activities connected with the war. This was the first experiment with adding non-holiday time to the event by opening the site on Wednesday afternoon and having both fighting and archery activities during the first day. There were a variety of melees, archery shoots and non-war point tournaments on Wednesday. When over one-hundred people showed up the first afternoon (about 25% of the total attendance), the concept seemed to have been justified. There were also tournaments and archery shoots on both Thursday and Friday that were not connected with the actual war points.
The Boar Hunt, held on Friday afternoon was a great success. Teams of dogs and spear armed hunters searched the woods for Florentine armed pigs. The pigs wore rubber pig noses, (I found these at a carnival store), on their helms. When dead, the pig noses were removed by the hunters and were counted towards the eventual prize, a canned ham.
One of the by-products of opening the event early was the creation of the need to have a troll booth that remained open for not just the few hours of a normal event but for essentially four days. (For the first two days we used my van so we could sleep at troll. In order to get people to help me for the first two days I had a keg of beer in the van. I had plenty of help, (maybe questionable help) until the keg was empty. By then enough people had showed up at the event to fully staff the troll table for the remaining two days.
One of the issues that had been discussed during the winter was the expansion of the war to take place on non-weekend days to allow more activities and make the event a larger part of Calontir's summer calendar. Other major wars around the Known World were expanding at the same time, (Estrella was growing to five days while Pennsic was becoming a week or more). There was some opposition from people within the Kingdom who had the concern that having war points on the days leading up to the weekend would actually cause attendance at the war to drop. The concern was that fighters and other participants that could not attend until the weekend might decide to not attend at all if the war had already been decided before they could take part. This may seem unlikely in today's version of the Lilies War, where very little importance is placed on winning and the sides are generally very fluid but the two sides were taken much more seriously in the early years.
At least for the first six wars the sides were generally very loyal and winning was the focus of both sides. Not to the extent of the principals in the major foreign wars, but people put out a considerable effort to help their side win Lilies War and the war points were much harder fought than the current version of the event usually sees.
This was also the war that almost wasn't (for the first time). Spring rains had flooded the site only two weeks before the event. Much of the central area of the site was behind the earthen damn holding back a small lake and for the safety of campers was deemed unsafe for camping. So what had been planned as camping area became the battlefields and camping was moved to the high ground. It also required a lot of work during the week before the event to get the cabins and shower house into a usable condition. The field battle was held on the slope of the lake damn. Also the area that had been planned for use as the parking lot was not usable because of soft ground. Fortunately the site owners worked with a neighboring property owner to provide a parking area for the event. The event also began under the threat of typical summer thunderstorms on the horizon, but unlike later years they circled the site and left everything dry and upright.
The scenario pitted the Laurels versus the Pelicans. The scenario was chosen with the idea of involving many non-fighters in the leadership and appealing to peers from outside of the Kingdom. The Crown did not appoint leaders, as had been done for the previous conflicts. It was assumed that these two groups were populated with a large number of the type A over-achievers that would generate a leadership group without the need of outside direction. Maybe, because this was the first time this idea had been tried for the leadership of the war, it turned out to be a great success as both sides made a major effort to recruit fighters, archers, and champions for the event. This concept has been applied to many subsequent scenarios with varying levels of success.
The two sides were responsible for recruiting archers and fighters for their respective sides and both sides put out a lot of effort to field the most impressive looking army for the event. Both sides created banners, tabards, leadership teams, tee shirts, and both sides provided a feast on Saturday night for their respective supporters. (I believe that this event saw the first creation of Lilies tee shirts.) One of the informal services provided by the Lilies War staff was a connection with a liquor store in Odessa, where kegs of adult beverages could be ordered. The staff took care of picking up the kegs and took care of returning the empty kegs to the liquor store on Monday, after everyone else had gone home.
One of the big successes of this event was the non-traditional war point that was created with the idea of involving more than just the fighters and archers in determining the victor of the war. An impromptu volleyball game had broken out at Valor Tourney the previous summer and it was decided to add that as a warpoint. It was a happy coincidence that the camp had a nice volleyball court where the final war point could be held. Because this point and the archery point were held very late in the event, they ended up being the deciding points for the entire war and were both intensely competitive and keenly watched by a large number of the people at the event. (The war point came down to the last two shooters on the archery range, His Grace Lorell for the Pelicans and a very young man for the Laurels. According to verbal accounts I have been given His Grace was not victorious. Does anyone know who the young shooter might have been?)
This Lilies War also marked the beginning of another tradition that may not engender fond memories for everyone who has attended these past twenty years. Their Majesties' letter just prior to the war they announced that there would be meetings held with all the Peerage Orders and the Council of Nobles during the Event. There had been meetings of some Orders at previous Lilies but this marks the first general call for meetings at the event. Starting a long tradition of using this event as a place where the Crown can meet with a larger number of Order members than virtually any other time during the year. (There has yet to be a War which awards a Meeting War Point to the side with the best attendance at all the various meetings, but I am sure some Pelican is already plotting a way to make it happen.)
There were three tournaments held at the war on the days before the actual war points were fought and His Lordship Rorik Galbraith won or was on the winning team for all three tournaments.
The Laurels won the Champions Battle, the Field Battle, the Archery point, the Bardic point, and the Woods Battle. The Pelicans won the Bridge Battle and the Volleyball point. (While the Pelicans may have lost the War they cleaned up the site, neatly folded the Royal Pavilion, did all the required paperwork and turned off the lights when they left site.)
This event saw a large number of visitors from the Kingdom of Meridies, led by John Bearkiller, traveling to the event. Once again the discussions of many people centered around what could be done to make the Lilies War into to larger event that would appeal to people from outside of Calontir. Another sign of the growth of the event was the attendance at this war of TRM's Ansteorra and TRM's of the Middle.
At the court of TRM's Tomeeki and Fionna these are a few of the awards given, (although these are a little questionable because I have yet to find an actual Court Report for the event.)
Chrystofer Kensor Knight
Jenna of Southwind Cross
Rhianydd yn Albeth Cross
Lile ni Mhordha Fyrd
Briana Etain Mackorkhill Swan
Where the previous two Lilies had made a nice profit for the sponsoring group this event was held with the goal of breaking even. This site cost a great deal more than the previous sites for Lilies or other contemporary Calontir events were running. The site charged four dollars per night for each person staying on site, which the four days of the event totaled up to sixteen dollars just to cover the site cost. To avoid making the war cost unreasonable a single dollar was added to the basic site cost to cover other expenses of the event. Brother Cedric operated a lunch inn to provide a little extra income for the event and lots of stuff was donated to help with the cost of the event.
After the cost of toilet paper, renting some haybales, and the rental of a single port-a-john was covered it left the Barony of Forgotten Sea twelve-cents in the red. I covered the shortage, so technically this Lilies War broke even.
Lilies War V
Peasants Revolt (the first war with a name)
Theme: Baronies versus Shires
King and Queen: Roderick of Mandrake Hill and Brayden Avenel Durrant
Prince and Princess: Conn MacNeill and Cadfael
Site: Forgotten Sea (Camp Odessa)
Date: Thursday June 5th to Sunday June 8th, 1991
Autocrat: Brother Cederic and Marcellina
Site Fee: $1 per person plus $5.50 per night for camping. The total for 3
nights equaled $17.50. Plus $1 per night for a bed in one of the cabins. (This was considered pretty expensive at the time and was probably the most expensive event held in Calontir at that time.)
Income- $9,289.41 Cost- $8,523.04 Profit- $766.37
Much of the same autocrating group from the previous year switched around roles and put together a second war. Once again the event was sponsored by the Barony of Forgotten Sea, however even as this event was being put together the guiding group behind the war had already decided that some sort of Kingdom sponsorship was the future for Lilies War.
For the first time the war was held on the same site for two years in a row. For the second year at Camp Odessa there were none of the flooding issues, which opened up a much larger area for camping and for the battles. Even with the additional space the site was already crowded and it was obvious that a new site would be necessary in the very near future. There were other problems with the site beyond the high cost and limited size. As a church camp we could not reserve the site until all supporting church groups had reserved the days they wanted, which meant we could not plan on the same weekend from year to year.
The scenario pitted the Baronies, (and their Canton) of the Kingdom versus the Shires. The scenario was chosen as a way to promote group unity and participation while avoiding a regional division, which was still seen as a dangerous precedent for the Kingdom. Baronies and their Cantons would make up one side while the shires and various unofficial groups would comprise the second side. This scenario was in part an answer for the leaders of the larger groups around the Kingdom who had seen their groups divided by the scenarios for Lilies I and II. Allowing groups to fight and work together would strengthen local groups and recreate a little of the feeling from the old Baronial Wars period from before the creation of Lilies War.
Herzog Shadan organized the "Free Shires and Colleges" of the Kingdom, (see his letter below). Lord Gilligan was the Commander of the Shire forces and Count Lorell was in charge of organizing the archers for the army of the shires." A special position was created for Master Angus to handle rhetoric and bardic endeavors in response to anything the Baronies might come up with. His Lordship Akitsuki Yoshimitsu led the forces of the Baronies, who seemed to have had a lot less organization than the shires. They and other supporters of both sides used the Mews to exchange many colorful letters in the months leading up to the event
Along with letters from the two commanders, in the same Mews is a letter from a group known as "Vikings R Us" offering their services to the highest bidder at the war. This group and several others were building on theme units that had fought at Lilies III for either the French or English sides. Their motto was, "No payment too large, no enemy too small".
The site had opened on Wednesday for the previous war, but because of
scheduling problems with the site Lilies V opened a day later. The site opened early Thursday morning which allowed the scheduling of a tournament on the opening day of the War. There was also a tournament on Friday and a just for fun Woods Battle. There was still a concern that having war points before Saturday would hurt participation in the event. The opposite of that argument came from the many people who got there on the first day and the commanders who had worked to field a force early in the war. They wanted at least a couple of war points to be decided before Saturday to reward the side that got their forces on the field early. Despite opening almost two days early this was essentially still a weekend event.
The previous year the Laurels and Pelicans had each created a feast for their supporters and for this event both the Baronies and the Shires provided a feast/party for their supporters. The Baronies on Friday night and the Shires on Saturday night, in order to share the limited facilities and area that could be used to put on the feasts.
In most respects this war was a repeat of the previous year's event. The same site, basically the same autocrating staff, sponsored by the same Barony, roughly the same schedule for opening and closing, the same structure for fees and the same basic set of battles. It was probably this war that did more than any of the previous events to make the War of the Lilies as the focus of Calontir's summer. Before this event, each year had been something of a question about where, when, and even if there was going to be another War of the Lilies. The war had become an accepted part of the Kingdom calendar, now it just needed a more permanent organization and home for its future evolution.
Notable awards from court of Roderick and Brayden at Lilies V
Angus of Blackmoor Sword of Calontir
Rolf Eichman Silver Hammer
Deotrich Hiltepard Iren Hirth
Lorrel of Shrewsbury Calon Cross
Christopher Amber Iren Fyrd
Even for the first event held at the Camp Odessa site there were obvious problems with it for future wars. The site did have several things that considered necessary for any future site that might be considered. A nice outdoor pavilion for courts and other activities. There was a wonderful wooded section where the Boar Hunt and other fighting activities could be held. The cabins, showers, and classroom buildings were adequate for the needs at the current level but would quickly be outgrown if Lilies War continued to grow at the rate seen over the first five years. There were problems with parking on the site and the SCA event could only be scheduled around other church activities which meant we could not lock in a date more than a few months in advance. (For Lilies V the February Mews calendar has a question mark beside the June date because of a possible conflict with a church event on the Monday following the event and the eventual scheduling had church campers showing up Sunday before the last SCA people had folded their tents. This had resulted in site clean-up being down at a dead-run and some problems in the overall level of site cleaning.)
The site was also very expensive, relative to other events being held in Calontir and in the surrounding regions. Someone who showed up for the first day of the event paid $17 site fee. Of that $16 went to the site leaving $1 per person for the autocrats to run the event with. Charging for cabins, non-member fees, profits from the inn helped with the costs of the event, (particularly the second year when Cederic's household operated an inn for much of the event), but overall the events broke even. (My event report to the Baronage of Forgotten Sea shows that I lost 12 cents on the event. Most of the profit the second year came from the inn and the increased demand for cabin space. At the previous War of the Lilies III the site fee had been only $10 for members who camped, and that was considered pretty expensive by the standards of the day.
Even as the last tents were being packed at Lilies V and lot of forces were coming together to drastically change the nature of Lilies War.
The informal group that had grown up around the idea that Lilies needed to become Calontir's war left Lilies V with several basic ideas for the next war, and for the long term future of the event.
A. We needed a new site. Bigger, cheaper, but still near the center of the Kingdom
B. The war needed to be independent of any local group to create a systematic pattern of development and to involve the entire Kingdom in supporting the event.
C. There needed to be a long term planning group created at the Kingdom level to oversee the future of the event.
And then there was Lilies VI and things changed, oh yes Virginia they did change!
People looked to the organization of Pennsic and other large wars around the Society where these events were sponsored not be a local group but by the Kingdom itself. Forgotten Sea was concerned about sponsoring a third Lilies War that might establish a traditional sort of event which would limit the Barony's summer event choices. There was also the vague feeling that what we were working with was rapidly becoming too important to be the responsibility of a single group. Lilies War was on the verge of becoming truly THE Kingdom event and that seemed to call for a new form of organization that answered directly to the Crown. There was also a general agreement that whatever organization was created needed to be responsive to the desires of each summer Crown regarding what type of war they wanted to host.
In the months following the fifth War of the Lilies the Crown and a wide variety of people from several groups throughout the Kingdom came together to create the framework of what would become the War of Lilies. On December, 9th, 1991, Their Majesties Roderick and Brayden signed the first authorization to create a Committee and draft a Charter for the group. The first Charter was a single page with very little details and some serious problems that became obvious almost immediately, (it violated several then Kingdom laws among other things.) A second Charter was drafted within six months and presented for discussion at Lilies VI. Following that meeting a revised Charter was created and finally signed by Their Majesties Chrystofer and Bryaden just prior to Lilies VII. The first step was the creation of the Lilies Committee with the responsibility of ensuring that a war would be put-on each year and to provide some type of long range planning for the event. Their Majest!
ies allowed me to become the first Lilies Committee Chairman and named the first seven people to the committee. (That was pretty much anyone who wanted to be on the Committee at that point in time.) Since that time the original Charter was extensively reworked by Mistress Rhianwen and signed by TRM Valens and Susannah on July 25, 1998. It has since been revised a couple more times with each version becoming longer, more detailed and elaborate.
The First Lilies War Committee:
Valens of Flatrock Kirk FitzDavid
Andrixos Seljucroktonia Graidhne ni Ruaidh
Rice le Raton Chidiock the Younger
The first mission for the new Committee was to local and reserve a site for the next War of the Lilies. It was generally agreed that the ideal site would be located somewhere near the center of the Kingdom, (i.e. the Forgotten Sea area), and somewhere that would allow us to commit to several years on the same site. The ideal site would be less expensive, have cabins and all the necessary amenities for a week-long camping event.
In Forgotten Sea, HL Hertha Blair had connections with the Corps of Engineers parks in the area and through HL Chidiock the Younger suggested that we look at the camping sites around Smithville Lake. Between them they arranged that we could meet with the Director of the Parks, and get a tour of the possible sites around the lake.
Several of the Committee members traveled to Smithville Lake and spent most of one afternoon touring the various camping sites operated by the Platt County Parks Department with John Hartman the Director of Parks. We looked at the camping areas around the Marina located behind the shower house across the road from our current site but decided it would have serious problems with parking and limiting access to the site from the general park going population. We also investigated the sites near the dam area, (which were later heavily damaged by a tornado only two weeks before a later Lilies War.) but again found they would have problems with parking and access. Another problem with using the camping areas that included improved campsites and camper hook-ups would be the fairly high cost for a week-long SCA event.
As we were traveling back to the Park Headquarters we drove by the gate to Kelsey Short Youth Camp and one of us asked what sort of camping area was beyond the gate. We were told that the site probably would not work for what we wanted but were reluctantly given a brief tour around the site. At the time the only water outlets were at the three wooden shelter houses on the property. There was no electric service anywhere on the site, and the only gravel roads were to the wooden shelter houses. On the positive side there was almost unlimited space for future growth, plenty of room for parking, a wonderfully cooperative site owner, the site would be easy to control access to through the single gate, there was extensive access to the lake, and the site was extremely cheap. (The first year the park charged us $.50 for the first 50 people and $.25 for each additional camper per day. They also agreed to pay for trash pickup and were willing to discuss future site improvements.)
John Hartman at the Parks office was key in guiding us through the process of getting permission from the various organizations necessary for us to use the Youth Camp. During the fall of 1991 myself and several members of the Lilies Committee made three presentations to the Clay County Parks Board, the County Commission, and the Chamber of Commerce for the City of Smithville. They were all anxious to see the facilities at the lake used by a large group but were hesitant about the SCA and what type of people they were inviting into their community. At first there were several regulatory issues to be resolved before the SCA could use the Kelsey Short Youth Camp. The first issue was that the camp had been established for "youth" activities and there were questions about how the SCA could qualify as a group eligible to use the camp. Part of the presentation for the Parks Board included a detailed accounting of the various "youth" activities that we provided at other events and an outline of what could be provided as part of Lilies War. The second issue was the "weapons free" zone that covered the Youth Camp. After much discussion about the intent of the rule and what the SCA would have on the site, the County Commission agreed to give the SCA a waiver that would cover the decorative weapons carried for show, weapons that might be offered for sale, and the archery area.
With some reservations all the government bodies involved agreed to allow the SCA to hold our event at the Camp during the following summer. The next major task for the new Committee was to find an autocrat, settle on a theme, and create a plan for hosting an expected 600 people on a very primitive site. Luckily for the Committee Countess Susannah agreed to autocrat the event. (This would be the first of five Lilies that she would autocrat before coming to her senses.) She quickly put together a staff of veterans from the last two wars and members of the Committee. Kirk Fitzdavid, from Three Rivers, became the Fighting Marshal, which was the first move towards bringing in people from other areas of the Kingdom for the important roles at the War.
By the late fall Susannah was assembling a plan for a Lilies War that would really set the stage for all the Wars that have been held since. The scenario was chosen by the War Committee after the proven process of throwing out various possibilities around campfires and post revels during the fall months until we found one that seemed to enjoy the greatest amount of support. The theme of War pitted the former Winter Queens versus the Summer Queens. Once again this theme would involve a leadership group that was very well known but was not generally associated with leading a war effort.
In December of AS XXVI, TRM, Conn and Cadfel, made what many thought a foolish move in awarding me, (Valens of Flatrock, just in case you forgot) a Pelican. The award was in large part for my work in seeing that Lilies continued through those first years. I took credit for the work of many people when I accepted the award, but there was free food and I was promised a very cool scroll, (the scroll never was produced but the story of that would require a special addendum). When asked by His Majesty, for evidence of my work I announced that Lilies VI would take place at a new site, bigger and better than the previous years, and that the theme would be former Queens fighting it out. (Among other things, they had wisely gotten me out of the way through the time honored practice of promoting me to Lilies Chairmen where I became a toothless bureaucrat.)
Lilies War VI
War of the Roses (Winter Queens versus Summer Queens)
Theme: Summer Queens versus Winter Queens
King and Queen: Rorik and Morgana
Prince and Princess: Steffen and Lile
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: Wednesday June 10th to Sunday June 14th 1992
Autocrat: Susannah Griffon
Site Fee: A complex sliding scale based on arrival date, (blame Pennsic for this) Wed.=$15 Thur.=$13 Fri.=$11 Sat.=$9 $2 discount for members on each daily cost.
Cost- $4,970.12 Profit- $4,792.88 (The huge profit margin came from a sharp jump in attendance and that so many people showed up so early in the week.)
This was the first experiment at making Lilies War a Kingdom sponsored event. At this point in history no one was quite sure what that was going to mean in terms of Kingdom oversight, funding, responsibility for Kingdom officers, and what level of involvement the Crown was going to have for this and future events. Kingdom law was changed to include clauses to cover Lilies War. Laws were added to clearly set out the relationship of the new entity with the Kingdom Seneschal, Treasurer, and other Kingdom level officers. A Charter was created and signed by the Crown outlining the responsibilities of the Committee and its make-up. There would be several problems with the Charter that would require a couple of rewrites in the following years but it served the purpose for the first two years.
The first large issue was financial support for the War. The Shire of Carlsby had once donated a sum of money to help support the War but that had long since been absorbed by the Kingdom General Fund and was unavailable for the autocrats to draw upon. Unlike an event sponsored by an established group there was no bank account to cover expenses before the event. The Barony of Forgotten Sea donated $1,500 to the War fund to help cover some of the expenses prior to the actual event. During the months leading up to the event it was obvious that this amount would not cover all the expenses that would need to be paid before the event ever opened. The end result was that the autocrat funded most of this war on her credit cards and counted on being reimbursed providing Lilies made a profit. There was also the issue of creating a bank account for SCA expenses without going through an official group. A brief attempt was made to operate the War through the Kingdom's bank account, with the Kingdom Exchequer overseeing expenses but that quickly proved to be unworkable. The solution was to create a separate bank account, charter the war as if it were an official group, and make the Lilies Treasurer a deputy of the Kingdom officer to oversee expenses and income. (It was at this moment a serious problem was created with the Lilies Chairman, (me), the Lilies Treasurer, (Susannah) and the Lilies Autocrat, (Susannah) living in the same house in violation of Kingdom and Society rules about checking accounts. Fernando, as Kingdom Treasurer, caught the problem before I got to take that planned trip to Scotland.)
The site opened on Wednesday morning but once again the first war points would not take place until Saturday morning. On Wednesday through Friday there were tournaments and fun battles that did not count towards the final outcome of the war. The site fees were based on the Pennsic model of a sliding scale to reflect when people arrived at the war. Out of this would later come the famous debate about site fees and fixed costs for people who attend only part of the war. The end result of the complex site fee scheme that was a serious problem for the Troll Booth although the next War would again attempt to make it work.
The autocrat and the Committee worked out the site-fees and budget with the idea of roughly breaking even based on the attendance at the previous wars. A conservative guess was made regarding how many people would show up and when they would show up, versus the expected expenses of the event. To everyone's surprise the attendance at this war took a dramatic jump and well over half of the total attendees were on site before the weekend arrived. The end result was a huge profit for this event.
This was the first Lilies War with a Site Book that was given to every person as they arrived at the event. Duchess Susannah put together the book with a listing of all the people involved in putting together the event, letters from Their Majesties, a listing of all the activities at the War, and the site rules.
The layout for the first war was very different from the current configuration of the site. Nearly all the camping was on the large field that was later used as the main battlefield for many years and the area currently set aside for the archery. What merchants that were at the war were concentrated in the small field which is now the Period Merchant area. Archery was on the large field near where the shower house is now located and fighting was on the long narrow field that connects the point and the merchant area.
The fighting was all done on the long-narrow field that was then on the edge of the major camping area for the event. The field presented several problems that caused all future combat to be moved to other areas. The trees made it easy to contain the fighting but for the large battles the only access was from the two ends and it was difficult for people to get off the field. There was also very little breeze across the field during the afternoon battles.
One of the most ambitious plans for the sixth War of the Lilies was the idea of providing a feast for everyone on site for Saturday night. Part of the cost of the feast was going to be covered by site fees but the budget required that additional money be raised before the event opened. The former queens banded together, regardless of what side they were supporting to raise money for the event. At the Calontir Peer's retreat held that spring they held several meetings to work out how they could collectively support the scenario. One of the methods was a Countess Dunking tank at the Triation War held the fall months before the war, in the Shire of Standing Stones. The headliner for the dunking tank was His Grace Shadan, reprising a Pennsic appearance complete with Prom Dress. Other less than willing volunteers on the hit list were His Grace Lorell, Master Paval and myself. Patrons paid a set amount to fire combat arrows at the target that would dump us unceremoniously into water that was only a few degrees above freezing. When several would be archers failed to score a hit on Lorell and Pavel, people resorted to running up and slapping the target. It should be pointed out that no former Queen volunteered for this fund raising effort.
The feast was the work of Brother Cedric and his household with the help of the Barony of Forgotten Sea and many other people from around the Kingdom. The autocrat called on her own mother, Mother Naomi in the Shire of Bois D'Arc to raise what would become the main meat course for the feast. Three-quarters of a beef and two pigs were provided for Brother Cederic to prepare at a site with virtually no facilities. To cook the huge amount of meat, Brother Cederic and his crew constructed two large cookers that were used to prepare the main course. The brewers of the Kingdom, (but primarily of Forgotten Sea) donated massive amounts of their product for the feast, and the War itself provided several kegs of "adult beverages" for the feast. Sir Nathan's (non-alcoholic), ginger beer was such a hit with the gathered populous that virtually none of it survived till the actual serving of the feast. (This was obviously before the current ban of SCA funds going towards this sort of hideous behavior. How did we survive in our wildly ignorant ways?).
The feast was served on Saturday night, buffet style and fed over seven-hundred people in a large commercial tent set up in the center of what was later used as the main battlefield out on the point. The feast was served buffet style with two dozen large tables around the edge of the big tent covered with the work of Brother Cederic and his household (Household of Dragon's Eyre. This was the first use of the large commercial tents that have grown to provide so many public areas at the war in the years since that first event at the lake. (The first year of the War at the new site came complete with the first Lilies Storm and a couple of days with the familiar high afternoon winds across the lake that have become an accepted part of Lilies.)
One of the special parts of the first Lilies War at the lake was the initial appearance of Calontir's navy. Harald Isenross brought his hand built ship the Zenobia to the war. His letter in the June Mews asked others to bring anything that would float to start some sort of group devoted to naval arts. From this would grow several variations on the Royal Navy of Calontir, complete with letters of marque, writs, captains, households and other historic nautical connections.
Pavel's chivalry ceremony: On Saturday on the battlefield, following the field battle, Their Majesties summoned the army of Calontir, complete with all the scutums that could be found on site. Before the purple shield wall that he had done so much to build, Master Pavel was invited to join the chivalry of Calontir. He became the first Master of Arms made by a Calontir King. Following the ceremony Pavel challenged several leading fighters from the other army to single combat well away from the castle/fortress where the next battle was beginning. Just as he fell his last opponent and turned to lead what would certainly been an unstoppable assault on the enemy held fortress, a single golf-tube arrow sailed an impossibly long way from the fortress to strike the newest member of the chivalry in a "most unfortunate" region of his manliness and brought a sudden end to Master Pavel's day on the field. Ice and beer applied in a liberal manner over the next twelve hours however, had him ready for the next day's combat.
One of the items that had helped win the approval of the Clay County Parks Board was the agreement that the SCA would open the site for the local population on one day of the event. The Parks Board had harbored the vague idea that they could build our event into a local tourist attraction that could draw more people to the area. For Lilies VI the Park Administration set up a mobile ticket selling booth near to outer gate and charged people who wanted to tour the site on Saturday at $2 per car. We put up flyers in Smithville and other locations near the park during the week before the event. The Park people and the members of the Committee saw it as very important to convince the local population that the SCA was not some weird group that they had to worry about on the streets of their communities. From this small beginning and through countless efforts of many people over the past eighteen years the SCA has established a great reputation for courtesy, openness, and honesty with the people of the area around Smithville. (We were also fortunate that during the first couple of years we were at Smithville Lake, the park hosted several other groups which were not what the community expected and they were not invited back to the area.)
A couple of the special local connections that would be created the first couple of years included Clyde and his sister who ran the small store in nearby Paradise. The first two years Pavel and I made a point of going up to the old general store on the corner every morning to have coffee and answer questions for the local population about what we were doing just up the road. Clyde reported that the first year of Lilies at the park site resulted in more profit on that one weekend then his store made for the rest of the summer. Since he and later his sister served on the County Commission it was SCA money well spent in local good will. We also met Timber and Treats who came by to visit the War on the last weekend and opened the idea of him selling ice, ice cream, and other small items from his truck on the site. That would be a memorable part of the following war and continues to this day. Another local connection that worked well but did not last long was the cooperation of the Marina Restaurant in storing most of the meat served at the feast, for a couple of days in their large freezer.
On Saturday night to end the event His Grace Shadan presented the "Fire Show" near the beach. This was a much enlarged version of a bonfire show he had given a couple of times on the final night of the Pennsic camp. (The trouble he got into with the self-appointed fire police at that event is a whole different story.) The Lilies bonfire was enhanced with a wide variety of exotic chemicals that he threw into the flames to produce pretty colors in the night sky. (I tried several times to describe it in more analytical terms and decided to go with that description, otherwise you just had to be there.) The Shadan fire show would be the seed that would lead the first Lilies fireworks display a couple of years later.
The Bocce tournament, Champions Battle, Field Battle, Fortress Battle, Champions Archery, and Populace Archery points all went to the Summer Queens
The A&S point and the two points for the Woods Battle went to the Winter Queens.
Final Total was: 6 Points for the Summer Queens and 3 Points for the Winter Queens.
Court (all spellings come from the Court Report, don't blame me)
Halidar Arkellsson Knight
Pavel Iosevich Master of Arms
Aleatha Charle Golden Calon Swan
Creg Duggan Sword of Calontir
Hyrim de Guillon Golden Calon Swan
Kazmer Zamostrolav Leather Mallet
Line Thorgrmsdottar von Wissen Torse
Mahongle Sword of Calontir
Marcus de la Foret Award of Arms
Mathurin Kerbusso Golden Calon Swan
Tristam of Lindsfarne Silver Hammer
(this is a partial listing of the awards and in no particular order)
Following the event I had another meeting with John Hartman and his parks crews regarding any issues they had, the possibilities for future events and a final reckoning of what we owed for the site. Virtually everyone at the park was tremendously pleased with the conduct of our people, our care of the site and the turn out of both our people and the locals. They passed on a wide variety of positive feedback from local businesses, (especially the local vendors of spirits) and generally assured us that the SCA was welcome back. During the settling of our accounts with the Park it came out that due to the costs they had assumed in picking up our trash that they had lost money. We offered to pay any extra amount they thought necessary, donate some of our money to future improvements at the site, or whatever it would take to make them happy about hosting another SCA event. Despite our offers at that moment the Park declined our money, but the offer had been enough to assure the Park Administration that we wanted to help improve the site and were willing to put our own money into the effort. From this meeting also came the idea that we would need a Park Liaison to establish and maintain a long term personal relationship with the Park and other groups around Smithville.
The event ended with the new Lilies Committee suddenly sitting on a much larger amount of cash than anyone had expected. There were several tense discussions about how much money the Lilies War fund should hang on to, what level of profit should be the goal of future wars, and who should be involved in making decisions about surplus funds held by the Committee. One suggestion involved the Lilies War being used on a continuing basis to raise money for special projects at the Kingdom level, (publishing Kingdom Laws, helping fund the Mews, other Kingdom publications, Travel Funds, Endowment Funds, and many other one-time projects.) The Lilies Committee wanted to give the excess to the Kingdom but not in a way that would have people looking at Lilies War as a way to fund Kingdom projects for the future.
Historical Note: The first Gulf Wars was held on the weekend just before this Lilies. The following year it would conflict directly with Lilies VII but afterwards would be moved earlier in the year to avoid future conflicts with the Calontir event. Look out sunny Meridies here comes Calontir and Falcon Man.
Lilies War VII
Theme: East versus West
The Known World War
King and Queen: Chrystofer Kensor and Brayden Avenel Durrant
Prince and Princess: Lorell of Shrewsbury and Ilaya of Shadowdale
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: June 14-21, 1993 (Monday morning to Monday morning)
Autocrat: Pavel Yosevich
Site Fee: A complex sliding scale that started at $20 for people arriving the first day. Site Fee went down $2 per day to $12 for the weekend. $2 extra for non-members
Cost- $10,529.69 Income- $18,694.77 Profit- $8,165.08
The previous War had seen a sudden increase in attendance of over three hundred people. Many of the new people were visitors from other Kingdoms. From this grew the idea of opening the leadership role of the War to other Kingdoms in order to grow the war to even greater size. A meeting of the Lilies War committee was held at a Huscarl retreat, where Chivalry and Huscarls were asked to contribute ideas for the up coming war and the future structure of the event. From that meeting the Committee Chairman issued a report outlining recommendations for the War for the Crown to consider. For the previous couple of Wars this system of open discussion at events around the Kingdom had worked pretty well to gather information and the decision making process had been very informal. The Lilies Committee and the experienced autocrating staffs, even the Crowns that had been involved were a pretty small group. (The Committee Chairman, (me) was sleeping with the Autocrat for Lilies VI, (Susannah), and this history should not even begin to go into my long term relationship with Pavel.
At Pennsic Grand Court, Their Majesties of Calontir invited the Known World to Lilies and announced that the theme would pit those Kingdoms lying to the east of the great Mississippi River against those Kingdoms lying to the west. During the previous week there had been a lot of informal visits around the Pennsic camp where key people in many of the kingdoms had been approached about attending our war for the following June.
The idea of allowing outside Kingdoms to become significant factors in our War was carefully thought out and many safe guards were put into the scenario to prevent the war from getting beyond the control of Calontir leaders. As a group of leaders from other Kingdoms began to emerge during the fall and winter leading up to the War one of the major issues involved fighting conventions and standards of equipment. The Pennsic model suggested that we should establish a set of standards that was a compromise of the various principle Kingdoms. Several of the visiting groups suggested that each battle be fought using the conventions of a different Kingdom, (this sounded fun, fair, and different, but after some discussion also sounded scary.) Having a different set of rules for every battle sounded overly complex and would require an extensive Marshal's briefing before every battle.
After a lot of discussion it was decided for several reasons to fight the entire War using only Calontir combat and weapons standards. It was reasoned that despite the big increase of visiting fighters, the majority of the people on the field would still be from Calontir and using standards that only a small percentage of the people on the field were familiar with could have caused problems. It was also assumed that most of the Marshals on the field would be Calontir citizens and asking them to marshal scenarios with conventions they might not be familiar with could be difficult for everyone involved. There was also the underlying opinion that our standards were already a good compromise of standards used in other areas of the Society and our visitors could adapt.
One of the major issues that had to be decided before the event took place involved several requests to sponsor tournaments or at least demonstrations of fencing as part of the international flavor of this Lilies War. Visiting kingdoms also wanted to sponsor tournaments that would be fought under their combat standards. Their Majesties, Chrystofer and Brayden were very supportive of the Lilies Committee and the Autocrating staff in diplomatically explaining to several foreign monarchs how they should enjoy the week as our guests and let the Calontir folks take care of running all the official parts of the War.
It was assumed that even with a heavy attendance from out of Kingdom that the citizens of Calontir would make up the majority of either army and would be used to even out the respective sides. The population of Calontir was specifically not divided along the East versus West lines of the scenario. Many people or even groups within Calontir had strong ties with people from other Kingdoms and it was assumed that they would largely be committed along those lines. For the rest of Calontir, that had no outside connections it was hoped these people would remain uncommitted until the actual War and would informally move towards whatever side was outnumbered. The Crown appointed two individuals to serve as the Calontir organizers for the different sides. The duties of the two were intentionally vague but evolved into largely answering questions from interested people from outside the Kingdom before the war and smoothing over problems of egos once the event had begun. To help the fighters from outside of Calontir adjust to the conventions of the event for the first time Sir Yoshi and members of the Calontir Marshallate put together a "Visiting Fighter's Handbook".
Eastern Army contact person was Lorrell of Shewsburry
Western Army contact person was Valens of Flatrock
Master Pavel volunteered to autocrat this war and put together a team that not only included many of the group that had worked on the previous three wars but people from around the Kingdom. This was part of an intentional effort to show that the event could be autocrated from a distant group like Grimfells and involve an ever-widening group of people from around the Kingdom. Technology, in the form of the internet and e-mail was stepping up to make this sort of long distance group coordination possible, without running up hundreds of dollars in long-distance phone bills.
For the expected larger turn out and to correct some problems from the first year the site was radically rearranged. The fighting was moved to the large flat field where the main merchant area is currently located. Archery was moved across the road to the area behind the current location of the Broken Harp Inn. The main camping area was still around the central point and the beach area. The long narrow field that connects the two parts of the site became the major camping area that it still is to this day. To correct some of the horrors of parking from the previous year a parking lot was laid out and Kirk FitzDavid put in charge as Parking Autocrat.
After the war the previous year in a wrapping-up and settling the bill meeting the Lilies Committee found out the park had actually lost money on the event, (largely due to their volunteering to take care of the trash removal. In contrast the event had made an embarrassingly large amount of money for the SCA. We offered to pay some of the extra costs or to contribute towards future site improvements as a way to ensure continuing good relations with the Park. The park had extended the gravel from the area of the shelter house down to the area of the main point to make access to the central camping area easier. Part of this was paid for by the Lilies Committee who donated $500 to the park for this purpose. There had been discussion about building a shower house on site and expanding the number of water outlets on the site, but the park had been unable to complete any of these projects before the event. It was following this, our second year at this site that the Park management began to take seriously our long term use of this site and what they could do to make improvements to the site for our use.
Opening on Monday and closing on a Monday was intended to allow the staff a day to setup the site on the previous weekend and on the final Monday after most of the people had left. The Monday clean-up day turned out to be a mistake since the autocrats while they did get virtually everyone off site in time to work on cleaning up the site they got nearly everyone off site which left them with very little help for the task.
The fighting schedule had tournaments only for Monday through Wednesday with the first war point taking place on Wednesday afternoon as the "Naval Battle". There were no war point battles on Thursday. Having a single battle early in the week was intended to reward the side that could get their fighters there early. For the first time the fighting ended on Saturday with the intention that most people would be gone by early afternoon on Sunday.
For the first time a Merchant Autocrat was part of the autocrating staff. Myra Nedlesaeng was the first person to hold this position. At the previous Lilies War merchants were charged $10 fee that went directly to the Park Office and allowed to set up anywhere on the site. (In hindsight one of the problems with the early Lilies Planning group was totally focused on fighting/archery activities and as a result other areas of interests were developed very slowly and sometimes without careful planning.) There had been considerable complaints about this policy from the merchants who wanted an area set aside for them where they could reserve space and be concentrated to promote more shopping. The small field now used as the "Traditional Merchant Area" and the current archery area were set aside for merchants. (Since the fighting and archery were then located at the far end of the site many merchants following this War complained that the area was not central enough to the main traffic flow of the event.)
With the very large site at Smithville Lake, the longer number of days for the event and familiarity gained from using the same site for several years in a row the war began building up a wider assortment of activities and services with Lilies VII. To help people keep up with all the activities that were going to be offered this was the first Lilies War that had a site book for everyone who attended the event. The book was primarily a listing of tournaments and battles but it did include Children's activities, archery competitions, some of the planned meetings, and more than two-dozen classes that were presented during the event. It would be a couple of more years before the advent of RUSH classes at Lilies.
The May Mews included a two page flier by Lady Lorraine Devereaux listing five days of Children's Activities for the War. Over the next decade the amount and quality of activities for young people at the War would be constantly growing. The March Mews included a note from Lady Katriana op den Dijk that she was organizing the Lilies Ball for the war. She also put together a booklet that listed all the dances, complete with steps and music, that was planned for the ball.
Once again a small part of the site fee went to a Friday evening feast for everyone on site. (That the feast was being served on Friday night was another sign that the main functions of the War were expanding beyond the tradition of a single weekend event.) Brother Cederic expanded his cooker fleet to include one capable of cooking two entire sides of beef, along with a smaller cooker for the two entire pigs that he cooked on site. Each side of beef weighed over 500 pounds and required slightly over 24 hours to cook. The process of turning the massive chunks of beef required a large crew of big guys who, (unless something happened very late at night), never once dropped the progressively hotter and better smelling main course. The groups of Calontir did an even better job than they had the year before in providing all manner of extra food to go along with basics served up by the Lilies War crew. While the Saturday night feast was a great success it would be the last massive feed put on by the war. (Until Lilies 25 when this tradition was revived as part of the celebration of past wars.) The numbers of people being fed and the logistics of providing enough food were just part of the decision to make this the last great Lilies War feast. Brother Cederic and his household were unavailable the next year and the restaurant at the marina across the road which had provided cooler/freezer space for no charge closed during the following winter.
For the second time, a large commercial tent was set up near the center of the point area where the feast was served on Friday night. The tent also was used for classes, the ball, and court during the event. It was at this event, however, that the true nature of Lilies weather became apparent. The first of many summer thunderstorms that have visited Lilies over the years rolled through the site. There were also days of strong winds that swept across the point to test all that stood. This location proved to be so exposed to the wind and elements that the tent company asked that in the future other locations be found for the largest of their canvas tents. Other tents for use at this war and several previous wars had been donated by the Barony of Forgotten Sea and individuals but it was obvious that the war was rapidly outgrowing these smaller tents and future wars would see the general trend towards renting commercial tents whenever necessary.
In the interest of saving some money on the port-a-johns that were being rented for the event, the autocrating staff had given the contract to a small local business and established a schedule that involved additional units being delivered through-out the week. Everything about the arrangement was a disaster. Their only truck for servicing the units broke down, units were not delivered on time, and in a world without cell phones it became impossible to contact the owner with the problems. (Pavel has a couple of great stories regarding the expectations various people had for him solving the problems, but they are not suitable for this venue, unless he chooses to write them.) Following this event, members of the Lilies Committee and the autocrating staff for the following year would establish a relationship with a major supplier in the K.C. area that has served Lilies War very well for the past fifteen years.
The previous year the owner of Timber and Treats had visited the site on the last day of the war and asked about providing on site ice for sale for future events. For this war the owner brought out a trailer to sell ice. (It is a measure of how much our society has changed in that for the first two years he left a gallon jar on top of his ice trailer where people put the money for the ice they took. For that first year by his accounting he ended up with more money than there should have been in his jar at the end of the event.) He also drove around the site selling ice cream and ice. To help him with the concept that everyone at an SCA function was expected to be in garb Countess Susannah made him a tunic that he wore for the entire event. To replace the typical ice cream man music Katriana made him a tape of medieval music that he played, over and over and over again for the week. Children and adults quickly learned to associate the particular tunes with the afternoon ice cream treats.
The Woods Battle: One of the great moments of Lilies fighting occurred Friday afternoon during the Woods Battle. The Western army was tasked with holding a banner that they took into the woods in a hour long resurrection battle. The field for this battle was the heavily wooded area between the current buildings used for Troll and the Period Encampment area. The Western army took the banner to the furthest point in the woods, against the fence behind the current Troll booth area. In this small area, several downed and live trees formed a virtual breastwork behind which the defenders could fight. During the battle a thunderstorm of some intensity moved through the area. Gusting winds, driving winds, (since the Western defenders were facing eastward the driving rain was into the faces of the Eastern attackers), and lightning. Over the crashing of weapons and the shouts of a couple hundred fighters lightning could be heard striking in the camping area. During a short hold several leaders of the Western side, (California boys) asked about the safety of continuing the battle in the weather conditions. After a short conference among marshals and locals it was decided we were safer in the woods than we would be walking back to camp and the battle continued. The addition of slippery footing, along with the blinding rain, and the natural obstacles allowed the Western forces to hold their banner until the horn finally sounded.
Once again His Grace Shadan ended the war with a fire show on the beach that was larger than the previous year. It was following this fire show that Lord Wolfgar stepped forward and offered to help put on a real fireworks show for the event. Lord Wolfgar, (later Baron for his service to Lilies War), was mundanely a licensed pyro-technician who regularly put on commercial fireworks shows around his home in the Middle Kingdom. Shadan and Susannah immediately began planning for the first Lilies Fireworks show the following year.
A few notable awards for the court of TRM's Chrystofer and Brayden at War of the Lilies VII:
Toen Fitzwilliam AOA
Roderick of Mandrake Hill Torse
Heinrick Malachi Von Uri Iren Hyrd
Lorell of Shrewsbury Pelican
Susannah Griffon Calon Lily
Liadrachan ni Domhnathain Torse
The attendance jump was about 300 people, far less than had been hoped for when the scenario planning had begun. The out-of-kingdom attendance represented about 10-15% of the total attendance for the war. Almost immediately following the event the discussion focused around the future nature of themes for the war. More international themes were tossed around, and still to this day there are considerations of a war pitting two of our neighboring kingdoms versus each other on Calontir soil. On the positive side there had been a sizable increase in attendance and building on this for the future promised to increase future attendance, perhaps into the range of Estrella War. On the other side there were serious questions about the desirability of having the event grow to that size and how outside involvement would change the nature of future Wars. One telling observation about the nature of the fighting at Lilies VII was that the War had become much more serious in the way both sides approached winning. (i.e. At virtually every previous War there had been claims about who was outnumbered and by what amount but ultimately we went ahead and someone lost while someone else won. At Lilies VII, before the field battle could begin the numbers on each side were counted to assure the leaders of each side that no one was at a disadvantage on the field. (Lorell and I never did get an accurate count and just agreed to assure our respective leaders that our side had only a couple less than the other side had.)
The site fees had been set by the autocrating staff and the Lilies Committee with the idea that there would be about 1,000 people attend the war and the average stay would be in the range of three-days. The actual turnout for the War was almost 1300 people and the average stay was more than four days. This resulted in the event making over a profit of over $8,000. Following the event, along with the official report sent to Their Majesties was the recommendation that the Lilies Account held roughly $5,000 in surplus funds and the suggestion that Their Majesties should decide what those funds should be used for.
Gulf War II was held the weekend before Lilies opened on Monday. In the months following Lilies representatives from Meridies and the Lilies Committee discussed how each event could best continue without interfering with each other. The summertime heat of Mississippi had already encouraged the Gulf War group to consider moving their event to earlier in the season. In answer to their question about the date of future Lilies a decision was made to set the date of Lilies War as second weekend in June.
Lilies VII was really the event that decided what Lilies would not be for the future. It was a crossroads for many of the ideals and policies that have become tradition or fabric for the Calontir War. The idea of driving the event towards becoming a major SCA event on par with Estrella or Pennsic were largely discarded. (Lilies and Gulf Wars were born about the same time. A comparison of the two events will give you some idea of what Lilies could have become, for better or worse.) Surrendering the leadership roles for the war was seen as a mistake. It was the last feast, an acknowledgement that the event had outgrown some of the things we saw as part of a "normal" event. The large profits, (compared to most events then being held in Calontir), led to the idea that Lilies War could become the major revenue source for the Kingdom. Following Lilies War VI and VII the Kingdom treasury was given what was considered excess money in the Lilies treasury but the idea of using this event for funding all Kingdom expenses was dropped. The relationship with the Park Management took a giant step ahead in the process of creating a long term partnership to develop the Kelsey Short Camp into a better venue for the SCA and other groups. Many of the things we had been asking about for two years, roads, a shower house, more water outlets, electrical connections, had all been considered nearly impossible to accomplish because the park did not have the people or resources to provide them for a single group of campers. Suddenly all those things became possible and solid plans were laid to provide what we had been asking for. Those plans were framed in terms of "this year" we will do this and "next year" we can accomplish this, "the following" year we can hopefully work on this.
Lilies War VIII
Theme: Hyrd & Fryd versus Knights and Men at Arms (Saxons versus Normans)
King and Queen: Conn II and Sile
Prince and Princess: Eringlin and Eleanor
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: June 11-20, 1994 (Saturday to Monday)
Autocrat: Susannah Griffon and Liadrachan ni Domhrallain
Site Fee: $20 plus $2 for non-members for the entire event, going down $2 per day
Attendance: 1146 (from eleven kingdoms)
Cost: $13,593 Income: $16,304.85 Profit: $2,711.19
The War expanded to two full weekends with the site opening on Saturday for the first time but nothing official happening until Sunday afternoon. (The site opened Saturday instead of the now traditional Friday in order to give the staff time to set up the site on Friday evening.) The War was now officially put on the Kingdom calendar as the second and third weekends of June. Even though the event opened on Saturday there was still an attitude that the number of people showing up for the first few days might be relativity small so the first war point battles of the War took place on Wednesday and the final battle was held on Saturday afternoon.
The theme for Lilies VIII stressed the cultural heritage of Calontir by pitting the Fryd and Hyrd, (the Saxons), against the rest of the Kingdom, (the Vikings and later the Normans). (There has from the very first Lilies been a basic issue regarding themes that essentially tell most people what side they are going to be on versus themes that allow most people to decide for themselves what side they will support and that conflict continues each year as autocrats consider various scenarios.) It was hoped that the theme would serve to draw the fighting and archery branches of the two orders closer together as they worked together to muster forces for the fighting field, archery field, and the variety of other contests during the week. It was also hoped that while the chivalry had a wealth of leadership they would work closely with the newer fighters to form fighting units. It was also envisioned that the chivalry would have to become more active on the archery field in order to oppose the advantage the other side would have when the archers of the hyrd were mustered for the opposing side.
The theme was intended to roughly follow the historical events leading to the Norman conquest of England in 1066. (This was the first time a theme made an attempt to include some historical aspect to the battles.) As a result there were three major units taking part in battles during the week. The Viking would fight the Saxons in the early battles, while the later battles would have the Normans fighting the Saxons. Another special aspect of this theme was a series of tournaments held at the Spring Coronation event to determine the leaders of the three major units involved in the battles. Sir Angus of Blackmoor won the job as leader of the Normans along with Sir Halidar Arkellsson leading the Viking. Lord Brannac MacCon was the commander of the Saxons for the week.
The site for the third war to be held at the Smithville site remained largely what it had been for the previous year. The fighting was on the large field that is currently used for the merchants and the RUSH tents. Merchants were for the most part in the small field near the current archery area, and camping was concentrated on the main point. This was also the years when the archery field seemed to get moved every year, in search of a suitable area.
With the third year for Lilies War on the Smithville site the effort by the Park to expand and improve the site for our use began to show concrete results. In addition to Lilies, the Barony of Forgotten Sea had used the same site for a regular camping event, Horse and Falcons, during the previous summer. The Park management had promised that the shower house on site was going to be finished in time for the war but it wasn't operational until Wednesday during the event. (Old timers will remember that the original shower house did not have a roof.) On the first Saturday night of the war the empty drainage pit that had been dug for the shower run-off was used as the site of an impromptu torchlight great sword tournament. The park also expanded the number of water outlets, extended that gravel road out to the main point, and began planning for more long term improvements to the site.
This was the second Lilies that saw the Kingdom celebrating a tenth anniversary. At Lilies II the celebration had marked ten years since the region of Calontir was first created by the Middle Kingdom. This Lilies would mark ten celebration of Calontir as an independent Kingdom.
Fireworks: Growing out of the previous "fire shows" put on by Graf Shadan at the fire pit on the final night of the two previous wars a larger show became the passion of a small group of people involved in planning this event. It was through the work of Graf Shadan, Countess Susannah and Baron Wulfgar that permission was obtained from the park to have a professional style fireworks show on the Friday night of the war. Money was raised by a variety of means and Wulfgar used his professional connections to get the required permits and buy the fireworks from a local supplier. One of the unusual fund raising activities had taken place at the Triation Event during the spring. A dunking tank was borrowed and His Grace Shadan, (in a prom dress), His Grace Lorell, Master Pavel, and Count Valens were the targets. For a donation to the fireworks fund, individuals using combat archery equipment could attempt to dunk each of the individuals. The air temperature at the time was in the thirties, the water was almost as cold, so each victim suffered the fate of dunking only once before being rushed off to a warm shower to thaw out.
After the fireworks had been held on Friday night for entertainment on Saturday night there was a Torchlight Tournament staged on the beach. Richard of Wolfwood sponsored the tournament which was attended by a large crowd sitting on the banks around the beach area.
There were 27 classes listed in the site book but these were not officially connected with RUSH. Some members of the RUSH board of Regents felt that it would not work for RUSH to offer classes at such a primitive site. More and more people were beginning to see the week-long event as a good place for RUSH to offer and support those types of classes that were often difficult to have at traditional RUSH sessions. Talented people were discussing offering classes that might require several days to complete, classes that needed to be outside such as forging, paper making, building kilns, and dozens of other wonderful ideas.
As with previous years the park set up a mobile ticket booth near the main gate to collect a $2 fee from people who came out for the Visitors Day. Even though they told the Committee that they were planning to raise the price for the following year to #3 a car by the time the next war rolled around they had completely given up on charging visitors to the site.
One of the daily sights at this Lilies War was the small truck operated by Timber & Treats as it cruised through the site several times a day selling ice and ice cream treats. Following this war the Park would change rules regarding vendors on site ending the daily ice cream visits for future wars.
The first war point battle was not until Wednesday afternoon;
Wednesday: Saxons versus Vikings- narrow field battle. Weapons restricted to 5 foot.
Thursday: Saxons versus Vikings- Bridge battle.
Saxons versus Normans- Boat battle.
Friday: Saxons versus Normans- Field battle and Woods resurrection battle
Saturday Saxons versus Normans- Champions battle, Fortress battle, Field resurrection battle.
The Saxons won an overwhelming victory in total war points.
Some notable awards for TRM's court at Lilies VIII
Alan Smythe of Darkdale Iren Fyrd
Gauis Aquillus Maximus Iren Fyrd
Kazimierz Samostrelov Silver Hammer
Crag Goodleech Duggin Court Barony
Thorkell Siegurdson Iren Fyrd
Akitsuki Yoshimitsu Keeper of the Flame
Juelda of Salisbury Calon Cross
Aidan Cocrinn Laurel
One of the features of Lilies V through VIII was the creation of silver medallions that were given by the autocrats to Royalty, special visitors, winners of tournaments, and assorted people who rendered special service during the war. The silver coins were one-ounce coins that featured the emblems of the events. (I would have included a picture of the entire set but the ones that Susannah and I either received or kept from the events were stolen several years ago from our home. Hopefully some future version of this history can include a visual record of these wonderful coins if others come forward with some or all of them.) Also many of the early Lilies used specially created coins as site tokens. A complete collection of those coins would also be a wonderful addition to this history if there are people who have some, most, or all of these coins and other Lilies site tokens from past years.
Behind the scenes this was almost the Lilies War that did not happen. At the corporate level changes were taking place as the SCA made moves intended to increase the authority and resources of the national offices. A Executive Director, Tony Provine, was hired to reform the national organization and bring the various kingdoms more in line with a standard of operations. Many of the changes he proposed seem very tame by today's standards, and over the years most of them have become accepted policy for the SCA. However, at the time they were a radical assertion of national authority and met intense opposition by various kingdoms and groups across the known world.
The most radical change involved a decision that all Society activities would only be open to members of the Society. At the corporate level the idea of requiring membership to participate was thought to be a method to increase national membership, provide more funds for the national organization to maintain the corporation, and limit insurance liability associated with having non-members involved in activities such as SCA combat. At the local level the decision threatened efforts to increase membership, attendance at events, and seemed to be an overbearing application of the national office over local groups. Across the SCA there was widespread protests over the policy. Some kingdoms threatened to break away from the national organization and create their own local re-creation group.
The June 1st implementation deadline meant that Lilies was going to be one of the first major events to be required to enforce the new set of membership requirements. When Calontir and other kingdoms threatened to refuse to enforce the rules and turn away non-members at the gate. In response, Tony Provine contacted the Smithville Park office and informed them that our event did not have the sanction of the SCA and was not covered by the corporation insurance policy. That set off a couple of weeks of frantic scrambling led by the Kingdom Seneschal, Graf Shadan and the autocrat, Susannah Griffon to come up with a solution that would allow the event to go on. The whole sequence of events would fill several pages, involving shell corporations, private funding, a search for alternative insurance coverage, lots of threats on both sides, lawyers, the eventual firing of the Executive Director and Lilies War reluctantly collecting a non-member surcharge that was then sent on to the corporate office. With only hours to spare the Society granted the War of the Lilies official sanction and provided the park with proof of insurance so that the gates could open for the event.
Following Lilies VIII, Master Kirk FitzDavid was named to become the new head of the Lilies Committee. His first letter in the November Mews asks for bids for Lilies IX and comments about whether future wars should continue to be held at the Smithville Lake site if other sites could be found that would work better for the growing event.
Lilies War IX
King and Queen: Valens II and Elspeth
Prince and Princess: Gilligan and Adelith
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: June 10-18, 1995 (Saturday through Sunday)
Autocrat: Baron Tiberius
Theme: Baronies versus Shires
Site Fee: $20 plus $3 for non-members
With the selection of Baron Tiberius as autocrat it marked four out of five years in a row that the autocrating staff had come largely from the Barony of Forgotten Sea. While each year more members of staff were coming from other groups around the Kingdom, there was a subtle fear that the Barony would eventually come to dominate the war. Following the event the Lilies Committee expanded the process of recruiting autocrats by putting letters in the Mews asking for formal bids to host the next year's war, (which meant that Lilies X would be the first year with a written bid process). This was the next step in making the event truly a kingdom wide production and has since led to autocrats and the major roles of the war being filled by people from many of groups around the Kingdom.
The theme selected was a repeat of the theme from Lilies IV, chosen in large part because it had worked so well the first time. How the theme for the war would be selected each year was still not clearly defined at this point in time. An informal process involving the autocrat, the Lilies Committee and the Crown who was going to be on the throne for the event all had various levels of input. There was some discussion about developing a limited number of popular themes that would be re-used in a predictable cycle to allow long term planning by the leadership groups. Other groups believed there were lots of new themes that could be used although most people except that there is a finite number of themes and to some extent successful themes from the past need to be re-used in some fashion.
In the previous couple of wars there had been some hard fought war points and one of the issues discussed following the previous war was how to make the war less serious and more fun. The solution that Baron Tiberius used for Lilies IX was to have so many war points that none of them would be that important to the overall war outcome. There were over forty war points which resulted in the big battles counted for such a small part of the total that it had the desired effect of reducing tension on the two sides. Every group in the Kingdom had at least one war point named after their group. There were points for fighting (15 battles), archery (8 points), classes, parties, volleyball, and one that involved relay teams swimming from point to point with a stuffed duck. Most of the battles took place on what would become the traditional battlefield after this war. There were also battles on the beach, in the woods, and an attempt to create a town by using cloth among the trees in the area just across the street from the current chirurgeon's point. The final tally of war points, although somewhat confused and on some points contested, gave the Baronies a narrow victory which balanced the series after the shires had won the first time around at Lilies V.
Another changed experimented with by the autocrating staff was moving the fighting to later in the day. This was partly in response to some very warm days the previous year and at least in part in response to a couple of years where the fighting at Pennsic had been scheduled to start far earlier than the Calontir party crowd had found reasonable. Starting later in the day did help with the heat issues, but not every year saw temperatures that made the late starts necessary. Starting fighting events late in the afternoon tended to limit the turn-out for tournaments that had to be moved to the morning or right before battles. Over the years different autocrats/marshals have tried a variety of schedules, including starting different times each day which created its own problems when most people did not know when the battles began each day.
This was also the year where the site fee for the war went to a fixed price, regardless of when people arrived on the site. In part this change was due to the tremendous problems in creating, administering, and accounting for a fee schedule that changed every day. (The accounting of Troll Booth receipts from the previous year had been such a nightmare to reconcile that everyone agreed something had to be changed.) The other cause for the change was the realization that a large part of the rising costs for the war were fixed and not connected to when a person arrived at the site or how many days they remained, (port-a-johns, rental tents, materials for laying out the site, etc.) There was a tremendous discussion on the then fairly new Calontir e-mail list where the theme "It's the Fixed Costs" was the subject header for more than one-hundred messages.
Every year the question about when to schedule activities has been a question for the autocrating staff at Lilies. Some of the earlier Lilies tried to not schedule major activities like, battles, major archery shoots, and non-fighting war points at the same time in order to allow more people to take part in all of the activities. The obvious problem was that the number of people who tried to take part in everything was always pretty small. Asking the majority of people to stand around doing nothing during other activities might have worked at a smaller event but Lilies had far outgrown the concept. Eventually the scheduling of major activities became totally independent of each other until the only thing that gets exclusive scheduling is now royal courts.
Once again the site did not open until noon on the first Saturday in order to allow the autocrating staff to have Friday to set up the site. It would not be until Lilies War XII that the autocrating staff felt they could count on enough people helping to set up the site during the days before the war to enable them to open the site on Friday evening or afternoon. This has led to the autocrating staff now showing up on site Wednesday or Thursday before the war. In almost a parallel move the amount of activities scheduled for Sunday or even late Saturday began to decline so that clean-up could be finished by Sunday evening, instead of counting on part of the staff remaining on site until Monday to finish the clean-up details.
The May Mews had letters from the two commanders that had been selected to lead the armies of the Baronies and the Shires. His Lordship Rolf Eichmann was appointed commander of the Baronial forces and called for the baronies to turn out in heraldic livery to help capture the war point for best display of livery by a unit on the battlefield. From Lord Toke Ormsson commander of the shires the letter begins, "UNTO THOSE GENTLES WHO WOULD STAND WITH THE UNITED SHIRES OF THE KINGDOM OF CALONTIR AGAINST THE ABUSIVE ARROGANCE OF THE BARONIES AT THE UPCOMING LILIES WAR DOES LORD TOKE ORMSSON, FIELD COMMANDER OF THE ARMY OF THE SHIRES BY THE QUEEN'S GRACE, GIVE WARM GREETINGS."
The February Mews included a letter from Master Glendour Pendragon and Lord Trevor of Chinon calling for people who were interested in forming a Landsknecht unit for the war. The letter promised to help individuals, "get our garb together, make armor, drill and develop tactics, put on a feast, and create a military camp. We'll re-create a muster, set the laws of war and plunder, march out on the field and stomp the dog snot out of our enemies."
One of the greatest additions to the Lilies War IX was the first formal involvement of RUSH as part of the A&S classes offered during the week. Through the work of His Lordship Mikhail and Her Ladyship Juelda the Royal University took over the scheduling of classes and As with each of the previous wars the number and quality of classes being offered during the week were steadily increasing. In the September Mews, a letter from the RUSH Chancellor, announced that RUSH "offered a total of 750 hours of classes. We have had a request for approximately 250 credit hours, of which several will transfer to universities of other kingdom.." The letter included an evaluation of what type of classes had went well in the outdoor/primitive setting, (hands on classes such as dyeing) and some classes that had not worked so well, (lecture based classes). A this time most RUSH classes were offered in a variety of tents set up near where they are currently but instead of merchant!
s their neighbor was the battlefield, leading to lots of noise and people wandering around, (often seeking shade or a place to pile armor) who were not there for the various classes. When the fighting field was moved for the next year the noise problem largely was corrected for future classes.
After its first organization at Lilies VIII, the Lilies Ball continued and expanded to involve more dancers, musicians, and for Lilies IX moved to the shelter house near the main point.
The May Mews also includes an announcement/invitation for the Norse Wedding Ceremony of Halidor Arkellsson and Heather MacKenzie. The wedding celebration was to include Viking games, and A&S competition, Triatian Games and a Bear Pit Tournament. This is just one of the many weddings and other special celebrations that have become a major part of Lilies. For so many Calontir citizens, Lilies War has become THE EVENT during the year when more of our friends are gathered together in one place and unlike other weekend events there is enough time to hold personal events. It would be interesting to have a listing of all the weddings, hand fastings, memorials, and other special events that have been held at Lilies War.
As the War lengthened there was a great deal of discussion about when the War Point Battles should begin. If they began early in the week, some people feared that the War would be decided before people who could only attend on the last weekend arrived on site. As a general rule there are a few war points held during the first half of the event, with the number increasing as the week moves on to give added weight for the last few days. The newest trend to construct scenarios that are virtually a different war everyday makes this entire issue of much less importance.
With the demise of the short lived Lilies feast and in keeping with the theme for the war this year marked an increase in the number of official parties sponsored by baronies and shires during the week. The beginning of what would become the traditional parties sponsored by Forgotten Sea, Three Rivers, Coeur D'Ennui, Lonely Tower, Aston Tor, (TOR!!!!!), Houndsford, and even our visitors from the Outlands and Ansteorra took over for the official feast and expanded to fill most of the evenings at the war.
Some awards from the courts of Lilies IX:
Andrew Ward Iren Hyrd
Tiberius Marius Scutarius Swan
Ivan Grimbearn Iren Hyrd
Faolan Macthigheamain Iren Fyrd
Mikhail Nickolaviech Calon Lily
Trevor of Shinholm Leather Mallet
Juliana Avenelle Calon Lily
Adelith of Horton Cum Studley Pelican
Cain MacCuroi Swan
Arthur of the Black Marsh Iren Fyrd
Sine ni Stranathan Laurel
Lilies War X
Just when it seemed the Lilies War had established itself with a fixed date in June and a site that was going to be used for several years in a row Lilies X ran into a direct conflict with the celebration of the Society's Thirtieth Birthday Celebration. The Crown of Calontir and a number of Calontiri had attended the Twenty-fifth Year celebration of the Society which had been held in Ansteorra. At the time it was widely held that "if" the Crown decided to attend the Thirtieth Celebration event that Lilies would need to be rescheduled to either two weeks earlier or two weeks later. Eventually the Crown let it be known that they did not intend to travel to the Society level event and very few people were planning on the long trip to the Kingdom of An Tir, (Washington state) so it was decided to not reschedule Lilies War.
King and Queen: Chrystofer II and Salamandra
Prince and Princess: Eringlin II and Alethea
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: June 8-16, 1996 (Saturday to Sunday)
Autocrat: Susannah and Alan of Darkdale
Theme: The Crusades
Site Fee: $20 plus $3 for non-members
Cost $19,550.32 Income: $26,308.35
Following Lilies War IX the Lilies Committee and the autocrats for Lilies War X decided to rearrange the major activities of the war to make better use of the site. The merchants were over flowing the small field known now as the "Old Merchant Area or Period Merchant Area" so they were moved to the much larger field near the shower house where they are now. Some merchants also did not like the older area because they felt at the time that the area was isolated on the edge of the event, (this was before electrical outlets had allowed the creation of the "food court area"). There were also some people who saw that small field as prime camping areas and encouraged the move of the largest part of the merchants to the new area. There were also concerns about fighting on the large field near the shower house because during the afternoon it got very little breeze and offered little shade for the fighters and support people. The fighting was moved to the valley on the point, in part because IX had seen considerable rain as part of several strong storms during the week and that area proved impractical for camping during wet periods so it offered a good choice for the fighting with the added benefits of being near the water outlet, the wooden shelter house could be used by the waterbearers, it was open to afternoon breezes and provided more shade around the margins for the support staff.
That left the Archery, which previously had been along the road in the area behind the current location of the Broken Harp Inn. Given the safety concerns of having an open area behind the archery targets but at the same time the archers did not want to be located in some remote corner of the site the Archery activities were moved to the current area. At least for the first couple of years that move caused heated exchanges between autocrats and archers. For the first year some of the problems involved poor communication between the Autocrats, the Park Management, and the people who actually did the mowing about what areas were going to be used for activities during the war. Many archers were not happy with the new location. The autocrat was the subject of rude letters, poems, and general ill will from a small group of vocal archers. Worst yet well meaning Archers, led by His Grace Lorrell took it upon themselves to improve the area by clearing some small trees that opened up a much larger area for shooting. This effort ended up violating some of the Park Regulations, that everyone involved was ignorant of, and leading to a serious conflict between the Park Management and the SCA.
Following the idea used the previous year to avoid the hottest part of the day the fighting was scheduled to start at 3:00 pm each day, but on some very hot days the fighting was moved back to 5:00 pm. Tournaments were scheduled for earlier in the day or done in torchlight following the fighting.
The Crown selected from various volunteers two individuals to lead the opposing forces during the week long battles. Baroness Rhianwen ferch Bran ap Gruffydd called for, "all Arabs, Mongols, Mameluks, Byzantines and other threatened peoples" to rally to the cause of defending their lands against in invasion of the Crusading armies. Lord Charles De Cordena was named captain of the Crusader forces. His letter called for "Templars, Hospitalers, Crusaders and all citizens of the Known World that would join with this most holy Crusade." Despite some vague fears that people might take a religiously based theme such as the Crusades too seriously generally people had fun with the theme and many units took the field decked in the equipment of their historic counterparts.
Fighting began on Wednesday with a Breakfast of Champions battle (12 champions), which was a recreation of one of the more fun battles from Lilies II. Each side selected 12 champions who began the battle seated around a hay bale table. Weapons were limited to what they could carry in their belts or specially created weapons that imitated items that would be found on a breakfast table, (combat legal tankards, turkey legs, platters, etc.). In an effort to balance uneven forces and allow the commanders more involvement in the course of the war and unusual system of battles was used. Following the Champions battle the two armies fought a woods battle over the possession of five banners. Following that battle the losing commander was allowed to decide what type of battle would be fought next. Commanders could select from "a open field engagement, a bridge/river crossing battle, a narrow pass, or a fortified position". Two battles were scheduled for Thursday, three fo!
r both Friday and Saturday. Since the defeated army was always able to select a type of battle that gave them an advantage neither side managed to win two battles in a row during the entire war.
Several theme based fighting units were fielded during the war. In the April Mews, Master Syr Angus of Blackmoor and the Brothers of the Hospital of St. Lasurus called for anyone to "join them in their cause of aiding those poor souls whom suffer from the dread leprosy at their hospital outside the wall of Jerusulam..". Several fighting house holds created crusader type surcoats and shields bearing the crusading cross for the event.
A special non-war point battle was held on Saturday morning, (remember there was only one Saturday for fighting since the site did not open until noon on the first weekend), between the crusading army raised by Earl Gilligan against the Vikings. His letter in the May (1996) challenged the "beserk warriors from the fjords of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark" which he claimed had repeatedly raided his Irish homeland.
One of the features of this war was the Camp of Saint Gabriel. The group sponsored late period/high persona tournaments and events throughout the week after a formal camp opening ceremony on Sunday evening. The contests were not just fighting tournaments but also archery shoots and A&S competitions. Tournaments included a Four Corners Melee, a Double Elimination Tournament, a Barrier Tournament, the Lions and Lilies Melee, a Torchlight Tournament, Challenge Tourney.
Along with the several tournaments sponsored by the Camp of Saint Gabriel there were more than twenty tournaments sponsored by various groups during the week. Tournaments were sponsored by visiting kingdoms such as the Middle, and the Outlands, along with several Calontir branches and many individuals. This year marked the first Waterbearer's Tournament, with 37 fighters carrying the favors of people who had worked as waterbearers during the event. (Tamar of Oak Heart's letter in the August 1996 Mews) This war marked the high point regarding the number and variety of fighting tournaments at any Lilies War.
One of the more unusual tournaments or fighting contests during the week was the appearance of Monday Night Football Teams of five fighters, four with single swords and one with a six-foot polearm or shorter. A six-pack of some beverage was required per team to enter. Each round consisted of two 5-minute halves. The tournament began at 8:00 pm on Monday night and the round-robin format ran until darkness. This event was held on a area next to the Grand Pavilion in the merchant area that had been kept clear for this event, (this is the area now used for the RUSH classroom tents currently.) Another unusual fighting event was the boar hunt sponsored in combination by the Barony of Coeur d'Ennui and the Canton of Houndsford, (pigs and hounds). Teams of hunters and dogs searched the woods for pigs wearing rubber pig noses on their helmets. The team that killed the largest number of pigs was awarded a pair of canned hams as their prize.
This was the first year of selling SCA memberships at the war. As an additional incentive those new members who purchased a membership at the war could take their receipt to the Troll booth and get a refund for the three dollars non-member surcharge they had paid to get onto the site. It was also the first year where because of the storms of the previous year enterprising people created a system of display pennons to warn people about weather related hazards.
The traditional Lilies Ball was sponsored by several former Calontir queens lead by Countess Elspeth and was renamed the Rose Ball for this war. The Ball also included contests for "the group represented by the most dancers, best heraldic costume, best Infidel/Crusader costume, and the dancer who lasts the longest."
The wedding of Baron Tiberius and Baroness Nicolette was celebrated on Friday night just before the fireworks show.
Again at this war the Royal University oversaw a wide range of classes that were offered during the event. Because of limited space and deadlines associated with getting all the scheduled classes offered in the official Site Book, RUSH chose to publish the first "Arts and Sciences Class Listing Guide".
The Defending forces eventually won the war against the Crusaders with a final war point count of 8 to 7. The Defenders of the Holy Land won the first battle on Saturday, securing a overall victory with the 8 points needed to win, so the last two battles were informally awarded to the Crusaders
Some awards from the courts of Chrystofer and Salamandra
Trevor of Shinholm Torse
Albrecht of Trieree Iren Fyrd
Triffin ap Myrydd Iren Hirth
Toen Fitzwilliam Iren Hirth
Lief of Crescent Moon Laurel
Mikal the Ram Calon Lily
Luther Ambosfaust Torse
Rhianydd yn Albeth Pelican
Barbary Elspeth Ham Pelican
Heinrich Malachi von Uri Knight
Mikhail Nikolaevich Kramolaikov Laurel
Valens of Flatrock OAF
Royalty present Outlands, Northshield, Ealdemere
Following War of the Lilies X, Master Kirk FitzDavid stepped down at the Tournament of Falcons as Lilies War Chairman and the Crown selected Mistress Ariel of Glastonbury Tor for that position. Her letter in the September (1996) Mews called for bids for Lilies XI with a deadline of October 31 for those bids. The timing for bids during this period of the Lilies War history was based on the idea that any bid or theme could not be accepted until it had been approved by the couple who would be sitting as Crown of Calontir during the war. In later years the Lilies Committee wanted to move up the adoption of a Lilies Bid to the week of the previous war in order to allow more chances for the future autocrating team to observe how the war was run. Planning an event over a year in advance had its own set of problems and also had the effect of removing the Crown from the decision making process for future wars.
Lilies War XI
King and Queen: Cathyn and Branwen
Prince and Princess: Dongal and Aislinn
Site: Smithville Lake
Date: June 13-22, 1997 Friday to Sunday
Autocrat: Baron Tiberius
Theme: Thirty Years War (People over and under 30 years of age)
Site Fee: $20 plus $3 for non-members
Cost $23,809.57 Income-$27,135.35
Lilies XI was the second war to be autocrated by Baron Tiberius and in most ways it followed the system he had created for Lilies War IX. The rearrangement of the site that had been put in place for the previous war had worked to the extent that there would be no major changes until the Battlefield was forced to be moved for Lilies XXIV. The Park people had extended some of the gravel roads, added more water outlets, and cleared the brush from some of the tree lines around the site. This was the first Lilies War at the Smithville site to open on Friday evening which allowed the event to include two full weekends. The war moved a little closer to being a full week as the first war points in both archery and fighting were held on Tuesday.
The theme combined something from the Middle Ages and a easy way to divide the populace between two sides. Like previous themes that had essentially told everyone what side they were supposed to be on instead of allowing everyone to chose a side, caused some problems. The theme had the effect of dividing groups, households, and traditional groups. From the autocrats first letter in the February, (1997) Mews an effort was made to encourage people to approach the theme as something fun to do, but not something that anyone should feel required to take part in. (It was important to use the autocrats letter to explain the theme since if you look at the flyer published in the Mews, see above, it does not mention the theme.) The two sides created by the Young versus Old theme also turned out to be quite unbalanced, (at the beginning of the war only one knight in Calontir was on the under thirty side.) To balance the two sides many archers and fighters chose to join the side that reflected the age "of their persona," which allowed many people to be twenty-nine for a few days.
More than thirty war points during the week was a repeat of a tactic Baron Tiberius had used two years previously to prevent people from taking any one contest or battle too seriously. The war points also began on the first weekend instead of only having tournaments or non-war point activities until Tuesday.
The Crown appointed the leaders of the two sides for the war. His Lordship Luther Ambossfaust was given the task of leading the under thirty side while Syr Dongal commanded the side of the aged and infirm elders.
In what had become known as the "Old Merchants" area a group led by His Lordship Mathurin Kerbusso and Lord Edward Boisewright built a stage for what was billed in the Site Book as, "various dramatic and musical performances," during the week. The stage was designed to be disassembled and stored for use at future events.
This is the first year that the Company of Travelers formally hosted an Enchanted Grounds and a Period Encampment area with details and an invitation in the Site Book. Lead by Master Mikhail Nikolaevich the Enchanted Ground and Period Encampment offered RUSH classes, discussions, and activities in persona during the week. With the long term use of the Smithville Lake site this group and many others began the process of creating and improving on specific camping areas that have become a traditional part of Lilies. Many households, shires, or just groups of friends have created new camping areas that were not usable when the SCA first began using the current site.
The Noble Company of St. Gabriel the Arch-Angle, lead by His Lordship Trevor of Chinon, again created a late period encampment and hosted two tournaments based on the time period of the Hundred Years War, during the event. The company built viewing galleries and barriers for the tournament field with the plan to re-use and expand on these structures at future events.
This was also the first year of the "Bardic Encampment" along the main pathway through the site.
In connection with the general desire by many people to make the site "better" for our uses we have occasionally overstepped the bounds of what the Clay Country Parks will allow. This was the year of the "Tree Problem". During Lilies X the archery field had been moved to the current area along the main road to the central camping area. The site had many problems with weeds, brush, and some small trees that made archery difficult. The archers, lead by His Grace Lorell, undertook to improve the area during the summer following Lilies X, with the idea of having a much better area for the next year. There were misunderstanding between the Park and people doing the work about what could be cleared. Several small trees were cut down in what it turned out was a major violation of Park rules. When the SCA admitted to the destruction and offered to do whatever was required to correct the problem the Park offered a plan to fix the problem. The Lilies Committee was req!
uired to plant three trees of specific types at the direction of the Park management and the exile of those directly involved in the incident for one-year from SCA events held at the site. The cost of replacing the trees was covered by Her Ladyship Lynette Davejean. What could have been a major break between the Clay County Parks Commission and the SCA was avoided by the forthright attitude of the Lilies Committee, the individuals involved, and the future autocrating team.
The problem was caused entirely by ignorance of the Park's concerns and since then every Lilies Site book has included stern warnings about cutting trees or branches on the site. Also with better understanding about what the archers wanted for their area the Park has worked to greatly improve and help expand the area used for archery for every Lilies War since this incident. One of the early positions created by the Lilies Committee was an official position of Park Liaison, to ensure that there was a continuity in our contact with the Park officials. Sir Richard of Wolfwood held this position during this period. Over the years the relationship between the Park and the SCA has constantly improved and allowed Lilies to be continually improved through the work of Park employees and SCA people.
Under the leadership of Lord Gavin de Haga, RUSH continued to expand the number and quality of classes being offered at Lilies. A great expansion of what the Royal University could offer at the war came with the renting of the first tents set aside exclusively for use as classes. The final Lilies Report recorded a total of 254 students, (one in every six people at the war), who spent 1,497 hours in 108 classes offered at the war. (Based on returned class cards so the actual number would be considerably higher.)
The Royal University also sponsored a Children's Tournament on Friday afternoon. Only children that had attended RUSH classes during the week were allowed to sponsor a fighter in this tournament. The response to this tournament was large enough to make it a traditional part of every Lilies War since.
This was a year of some truly awesome storms during the week of Lilies. In the middle of one of the most powerful storms a lightning bolt struck the metal tent pole of Master Pavel's and Mistress Fionna's tent located on the main point. Along with their daughter Alex the three of them were in the tent at the time of the strike. The force of the lightning splintered the wooden bed they were lying on, welded a metal sword to the center pole, started several small fires and burned some of the support ropes off the tent. All three suffered burns and were taken to local hospitals. The injuries to Master Pavel required him to spend a couple of nights in a local hospital.
An experiment that was tried at this war was moving the "Grand Courts" which were planned for both Friday and Saturday to the morning, (10:30 am). Since fighting was scheduled for very late in the day any courts that could be scheduled after the fighting would need artificial lighting and that was considered a problem in the Grand Pavilion tent. While the morning courts avoided conflicting with the fighting, they did conflict with many other activities, (archery, RUSH classes, etc.) and were generally poorly attended.
Some awards from the Courts of Cuthbert and Branwen
Tarique Ibn Akmel Torse
Eringlin Aldhelm Leather Mallet
Waldryck Firedrayke Iren Fyrd
Lina Thorgrimsdottir Saethwyr Fyrd
Marcus de la Foret Iren Hyrd
Luther Ambossfaust Knight
Rhianwen ferch Bran ap Griffydd Laurel
Arthur of Blackmarsh Keeper of the Flame
Also at the Court of Cuthbert and Branwen the Canton of Aston Tor was granted official status as a group. This led to the annual celebration of that group's birthday at Lilies each year in what has become known as the Tor Party.
It would be following this war that a lot of consideration was given to building a castle of some type on the site for future fighting scenarios. Buying hay bales each year to construct structures to fight around and then disposing of those bales at the end of the event had been a problem since Lilies VI. Park Regulations, liability issues, and maintenance problems severely limited what type of structure could be constructed on the Lilies site. Eventually these considerations led to the idea of creating a Roman style sod fort on the field near the Fireworks area and later the construction of a portable fortress that could be erected each year and stored off site between events.
Following Lilies XI it was considered necessary to rent storage space near the site to store all the materials that were being accumulated for the event. Unfortunately during the spring before Lilies XII that storage shed was broken into and many of the supplies that were stored there were stolen. Following the discovery of the theft it was realized that there was no accurate record of what had been stored in the shed. This led to the creation of the Quartermaster's position as part of the Lilies Committee. This person was given the job of maintaining an inventory and overseeing the storage of Lilies property between events.