Markland

The Markland Medieval Mercenary Militia, Limited (or Markland for short) is a Dark Age history reenactment group with many connections to fandom. Markland is largely centered in the greater Baltiwash area and surrounding states. Sometimes it expands and a bit beyond, at least temporarily.

Markland and the SCA were founded independently, and at about the same time, but the SCA made better use of fandom to expand. Markland feels that it places more emphasis on history and less on fantasy than the SCA (at least the SCA on the East Coast). Markland still reenacts the Battle of Hastings and other Dark Age battles of Great Britain.

Markland encompasses a number of subsidiary organizations, of which some of the earliest were:

  • The progenitor University of Maryland (College Park, MD) student organization, the Maryland Medieval Mercenary Militia, formed by Bruce Blackistone and other members of the University Fencing Club to reenact the Battle of Hastings in 1969.
  • The Midgard Medieval Mercenary Militia, formed by graduating students who could no longer be members of the Maryland Medieval Mercenary Militia. {Now defunct?}
  • The Longship Company, a spinoff created to build a Viking ship and sail it on the Chesapeake Bay and surrounding waters. (The Longship Company's ship Fyrdraca was at Constellation where fans had the chance to find out first-hand what it was like to row a Viking ship. The dragon figurehead of the Fyrdraca was carved by Merle Insinga.)
  • The Marche de la Warr, at the University of Delaware.

Markland gained some members through contacts in the National Association of Rocketry (NAR).

Markland also helped fandom to spread, bringing fans from the NAR, universities, and surrounding communities through Markland into fandom.

Most if not all of the members of Clam Chowder and many of their groupies (the Clamshill Alliance) were, or became members of Markland.

Joe Mayhew was a prominent member of Markland and often dressed as a monk at Markland events, wearing an engraved tag reading "Balderdash."

Inspired by their experience collating APA:NESFA for a time, Aron Insinga proposed APA:1066 for the discussion of early medieval technology and culture, and assisted Merle Insinga in collating it. Most of the contributors were Marklanders and a few were academics. Ten issues were collated from 1990 to 1993. Two more issues were collated by Jan Derry in 1995 and 1996.

Marklanders often use a dating system of A. H. (After Hastings), placing their activities in the 10th century (1969-1066=903).

Story of founding here by Bruce Blackistone.

Web site here.


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