Medieval America Tk II: Discussion Thread

One quick comment on salt. The east would not be as salt deprived as you may think. The Atlantic coast would provide a rival source. Also, there are a few inland cities that sit on huge salt deposits stemmed from the beds in the western Appalachians. The mine under Detroit is huge, and Cleveland and Hutchinson, Kansas had extensive salt deposits. The Finger Lakes region in New York is a salt producing region.

The areas that I think will be hardest up will be the southern Appalachians, and the interior of the Pacific Northwest. The PNW especially will be hard hit because the is no natural iodine in the soil. This would result in increased birth defects over generations for a population without access to salt or the sea (central India is a parallel example).

A couple of idea stemming from this. There may be a small city/large town in Kansas, the heart of Cowboy territory. The town will be built around a minable salt bed. It would be a trading center, as well as a powerful political force on the plains. The only reason a tribe of Cowboys doesn't raze the place and claim the salt for themselves is that the other tribes would never stand for one tribe having so much power of the others. Second, people from the eastern PWN might be looked at strangely, or there may by folklore of 'cursed' areas where children are born dead or deformed.
 
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Well, the alcohol and Caffeine restriction were not seriously followed in OTL until after polygamy was abolished; Brigham Young owned a tavern at one point, IIRC, and Joseph Smith drank occasionally. It wasn't originally considered a required commandment, merely a divine suggestion. The text even says this:
"not by commandment or constraint, but by revelation and the word of wisdom, showing forth the order and will of God in the temporal salvation of all saints in the last days— Given for a principle with a promise, adapted to the capacity of the weak and the weakest of all saints, who are or can be called saints. Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days, I have warned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation."

So people interpret that as meaning that the early Mormons could only get alcohol and caffeine from their enemies, and that purchasing either of those substances would give money to those who oppressed the Mormons. An enterprising prophet could point out that either it's only a suggestion, or that it doesn't apply to alcohol and caffeine created and distributed by Mormons.

Goat milk would be a good idea though; correct me if I'm wrong, but I think goats can live fairly well in Utah and the surrounding states.
Would locally made beer be considered acceptable, then? I could see either vats being made by the village alewife, or else controlled by the church in a variant of later monastic breweries.
 
One quick comment on salt. The east would not be as salt deprived as you may think. The Atlantic coast would provide a rival source. Also, there are a few inland cities that sit on huge salt deposits stemmed from the beds in the western Appalachians. The mine under Detroit is huge, and Cleveland and Hutchinson, Kansas had extensive salt deposits. The Finger Lakes region in New York is a salt producing region.

The areas that I think will be hardest up will be the southern Appalachians, and the interior of the Pacific Northwest. The PNW especially will be hard hit because the is no natural iodine in the soil. This would result in increased birth defects over generations for a population without access to salt or the sea (central India is a parallel example).

A couple of idea stemming from this. There may be a small city/large town in Kansas, the heart of Cowboy territory. The town will be built around a minable salt bed. It would be a trading center, as well as a powerful political force on the plains. The only reason a tribe of Cowboys doesn't raze the place and claim the salt for themselves is that the other tribes would never stand for one tribe having so much power of the others. Second, people from the eastern PWN might be looked at strangely, or there may by folklore of 'cursed' areas where children are born dead or deformed.
In regards to salt, when White mentions the Salt Trade he almost exclusively talks about the Midwest, the East Coast itself presumably making it's own sea salt. He also mentions a samller source from, I think, Corpus Christie (The Gulf otherwise being too humid for Sea Salt to dry). However, even taking into account local Midwestern mines, that means only two 'kingdoms', Ohio and Michigan, can have salt.

That said, looking at economic maps, these areas produce salt currently:

Mobile, Alabama (Gulf Coast, too humid for medieval salinatory practise)
Oakland, CA
Hutchinson, KS (While you make a case for a Kansan salt mine, I contest that Deseret would simply send their Wyoming vassals out to sack it and maintain their salt monopoly)
Franklin, LA (See Mobile)
Detroit
Churchill County, NV (Yeah, there's no way anyone's mining this)
Cibola County, NM
Finger Lakes Region, NY
Williston, ND (In contrast to Hutchinson, I can see Williston as a Cowboy Mining Town - it's further from Deseret's reach and is very defensible. It will likely be the northern terminus of many cattle runs)
Painesville, OH
Cleveland, OH
Corpus Christie, TX
Houston, TX (Maybe see Mobile, I'm not sure)
Salt Lake City, UT
Charleston, WV

Using White's east map (which currently works as a useful guideline, if nothing else), that leaves five (5) kingdoms that don't need to trade for salt - Ohio, Michigan, Pittsburg, Buffalo, and Louisiana, with the US able to control any sea salt operations on the Atlantic. So I still say the Feudal Core will import most of it's salt from salt mines in Deseret and New Mexico, and that salt will basically be North America's silk - and nobody said the purchasing reasons need be rational ("Why are you using that Painesville crap? Are you a peasant? The Cibola grain is soooo much better, and more suited for noble palettes").
 
Okay, I've been looking at this map recently. It was obviously supposed to go in the 'War' section of the site. I think this shows common routes armies would take in Medieval America. If so, here are my thoughts:

1. Iowa/Illinois: This is obviously the route the Baileys and Dabneys took when they invade Illinois, and Illinois probably used this route to carve out it's own empire before the cowboy invasions.

2. Arkansas: Appareantly, Arkansas has some trouble with the Cowboys. Unlike all the other arrows, this one only goes one way, so Arkansas seems to just weather the raids and not do anything about them.

3. Red River: White gave this general area to the Red River Territory, which, together with Arkansas, would have been on the Southern Frontier page. Red River, in contrast to Arkansas, appears to give as good as it gets.

4. New Mexico: The smaller the line, the more likely I think it was supposed to represent common raids rather than full on invasions. New Mexico and the Oklahoma Tribes appareantly raid each other, probably for slaves

5. Salt Lake City to Black Hills: This is the route the Yaegers likely took when they pillage Deseret, but the two-way nature of the arrow is interesting. Did the Yaegers get riled up because the Mormons dared raid the Holiest of Holies, Mount Rushmore?

6. PAC-NW to Salt Lake City: And this shows how Columbia was able to conquer Deseret.

7. Sacremento-Boise: Obviously, the Scientologists of California and Mormons of Deseret likely don't enjoy one another's company, but the Great Basin means full-on warfare is difficult at best. The termini of this area are both shown as 'lancer' on the warfare map in an area otherwise dominated by 'horse archer', so these two kingdoms probably hire the Nevadans to raid their opponent's ability to field heavy cavalry

8. PAC-NW: The circular notion probably means that the Pacific City-States fight alot and rarely unify.

9. St Lawrence: Raids are appareantly common in Old Canada, probably because of religious and cultural differences

10. Detroit-Albany: This is the weird one. The Erie Canal obviously plays some roll. Bartlett's idea that Quebec ruled Upstate New York at some point probably no longer rings true (although I'm not willing to discount it), but this brings up another possibility - Did Michigan rule New York at some point, or was it the other way around?

11. New England, and 12. Virginia: Both of these regions seem to have somewhat frequent clashes, with New Jersey probably getting involved from time to time

13. Tennessee: Tennessee is appareantly a veritable battleground, which is why it's likely balkanized at this point

14. Deep South: The terminus of Florida, Georgia, and Alabama. This one's so pitiful looking it almost looks like 'Why bother?'

Obviously, these aren't the only possible fronts - If I were doing a map of France, these arrows would make sense for Between Cosmopolitan and Occitan, Rhineland, and maybe Piedmont, but not the Pyrenees, even though we have two examples of Trans-Pyrenean warfare in the Middle Ages (Roncesvalles and the Aragonese invasion of Toulouse).

Any other ideas?
 
A couple of ideas on the New Age religion.

The New Age movement is very big on health and alternative healing. Meditation, exercise, and various 'touch therapies' are very important. This could have carried down through the Dark Ages, in the absense of more modern techniques, making New Age medicine men effective and sought after healers.

New Age philosophy is very closely tied with female empowerment, often matriarchy. In this context, this could be one of the possibly few areas where women can advance in society and respected medicine women would be not uncommon. Also, the Gaia hypothesis is often a core belief, so an Earth Mother equivalent to the Sky Father could have survived in the belief system.

Reincarnation (a la Shirley McLane) might play an important part in New Age beliefs. Along with a person's own spirit guide/patron saint, the lessons learned from meditating on one's past lives may be considered an important step in spiritual porgress.
These are all very interesting, and I'lll see about incorporating them into the New Age entry.
 
The Dineh State of New Mexico

Hear ye, all persons! Ye people as many as ye are! I have done this according to the design of my heart. ... I have restored that which was in ruins, I have raised up that which was unfinished since the Buddhists were in the midst of the Northland [Deseret], and the cowboys were in the midst of them, overthrowing that which was made, while they ruled in ignorance of the Aquarian Way. He did not do according to the divine command until my majesty. When I was firm upon the throne of Aquarius, I was ennobled until the two periods of years...I came as Alamagordo flaming against my enemies. My command stands firm like mountains, and the sun's disk shines and spreads rays overy the titulary of my august person, and my eagle rises high above the presidential banner unto all eternity.
--Final State of the Union inscription of President Bill Cisneros I​

Located where several worlds meet, New Mexico is a land, both literally and figuratively, at a crossroads. Not 90 years ago the land colloquolly known as the Four Corners was riven by civil war, between the rival colonels of Santa Fe, Phoenix, and El Paso over who would sit on the throne in splendid Alburquerque. Lifers armed with bronze weapons ravaged the kingdom, causing the valuable rivers to run with blood. Worst of all, there was no President to perform the sacred rites to keep the Other at bay. Colonel Bill Cisnaros, the ruler of Phoenix, finally broke the stalemate a half-century ago. Already controlling the bulk of the kingdom's copper mines, thus forcing the other two claimaints to increasingly rely on Cowboy mercenaries, Bill launched a daring raid that seized the Cibola Salt Mine, completely disrupting his rivals' economy. After a few short battles he was able to enter Alburquerque and crown himself President, claiming a line of descent back to Pre-Regression Navajo rulers. He made the trip to Sacred Roswell, where the Other once touched the World of Man, and made the sacred rituals to keep the Greys placated. His final act before being buried in his pyramid was to resolve the succession issues that having multiple wives provided - upon his internment, his sons would race from Alburquerque to Roswell. The prince who arrived there first and completed the sacred rites would be hailed as President. The losers would be strangulated. And thus far, it has worked.


Specifics:


  • System of Government: Hydraulic Empire
    • Head of State:
      • President, chosen by and from the sons of the previous President by the ruling Cisnaros family after a special ceremony
  • Population: 950,000
  • Religion: New Age
    • Totemic Symbol: Zia Sun
 
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Can I do Eastern Upstate NY? Or is that already done?
New York is free, although the Feudal Core hasn't been opened for discussion yet (I wanted to get the much more unusual West out of the way first)

What we do know about New York State is such - it is feudal, has around 2,000,000 people, uses lancers (knights) as the primary soldier, is Non-Denominational, and exports wine, timber, and textiles.

White appareantly planned to break NY up pretty badly - we have New York proper based around Syracuse, a US-controlled NYC, and Gennesee County, based around Buffalo (which seems to resemble Hamburg), plus Albany County and what I can only presume are Ulster and Columbia Counties as mini-kingdoms. However, unlike the West Map, the East Map should only be a guideline to show us who the main players are, so you can feel free to ignore those borders when the time comes.
 
Well, the alcohol and Caffeine restriction were not seriously followed in OTL until after polygamy was abolished; Brigham Young owned a tavern at one point, IIRC, and Joseph Smith drank occasionally. It wasn't originally considered a required commandment, merely a divine suggestion. The text even says this:
"not by commandment or constraint, but by revelation and the word of wisdom, showing forth the order and will of God in the temporal salvation of all saints in the last days— Given for a principle with a promise, adapted to the capacity of the weak and the weakest of all saints, who are or can be called saints. Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days, I have warned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation."

So people interpret that as meaning that the early Mormons could only get alcohol and caffeine from their enemies, and that purchasing either of those substances would give money to those who oppressed the Mormons. An enterprising prophet could point out that either it's only a suggestion, or that it doesn't apply to alcohol and caffeine created and distributed by Mormons.

Goat milk would be a good idea though; correct me if I'm wrong, but I think goats can live fairly well in Utah and the surrounding states.
Why goats? Goats are bad at absolutely denuding areas.
 
New York is free, although the Feudal Core hasn't been opened for discussion yet (I wanted to get the much more unusual West out of the way first)

What we do know about New York State is such - it is feudal, has around 2,000,000 people, uses lancers (knights) as the primary soldier, is Non-Denominational, and exports wine, timber, and textiles.

White appareantly planned to break NY up pretty badly - we have New York proper based around Syracuse, a US-controlled NYC, and Gennesee County, based around Buffalo (which seems to resemble Hamburg), plus Albany County and what I can only presume are Ulster and Columbia Counties as mini-kingdoms. However, unlike the West Map, the East Map should only be a guideline to show us who the main players are, so you can feel free to ignore those borders when the time comes.
Well, Schenectady, Albany and Rensselaer Counties could be one country, that were former rivals, that united in the face of Quebecois invasion.
 
This takes the prior discussions of Mormonism and attempts to make a coherent whole:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (The Mormons Post-Regression)

One of the few institutions to survive the Regression in North America was the Church of Latter-Day Saints - Mormon doctrine advised its parishioners to stock dry foods and supplies in the event of an emergency, and boy, did they come in handy when emergency came. Combined with Utah's relative isolation, flanked by the Rockies to the East and the Bonneville Salt Flats to the West, and the Mormons managed to whether the chaos in decent shape.

With the disintegration of influence from DC, or even Sacramento, the LDS Church came to be viewed as the only legitimate authority, and Deseret transformed from a de facto theocracy to a de jure one. The President of the Church was the President of the State, and Deseret truly became a Hydraulic Empire. The rigid structure of the church lent itself well to bureaucratic needs, and the congregations - Wards - dictate much of daily life, from courtship to diet to labor.

From the Regression to the Yaeger Conflict, the LDS church changed little. Alcohol is now allowed, so long as it is domestically produced (even before the Regression, Utah produced a significant Barley crop), although non-alcoholic bevearage like goat milk is still preferred, but tobacco is still banned - although more pragmatic Presidents have allowed foreign vintage and tobacco to travel along the trade routes that pass through Salt Lake City (after taxing the bejeezus out of them, of course). Influence from the compounds and the desire to be populous have lead to a reinstatement of polygamy.

The President is voted on by the ruling family (currently the Reids), who are often quite numerous. He is, officially, advised by 12 Elders, but the President wields considerable temporal and spiritual power, and over-ambitious Elders will often find themselves walking into Nevada, to put themselves at the tender mercies of the Heretics.

Mormonism thrives on conversion, and this makes the faith expasionist - a theme that has only increased since the Cowboys and Columbians were driven out. Conquered areas, called Stakes, are carved out from Deseret's neighbours to spread the Book of Mormon. There are currently only four Stakes, based off the pre-Regression states - Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and Nevada (and Nevada only exists in a theoretical state) - but plans are in motion for new Stakes all the time. Stakes are formed when the Danite Templars move into the territory. Menfolk who refuse to convert are put to the sword, women are given as prizes to the victors, and children are to be inducted into the Church. After eighty years of oppression and persecution by the Cowboys and Columbians - the so-called 'Diaspora', Mormonism has become increasingly 'hardline.' The once-vaunted Zion's Legion may be only a shadow of its former glory, the Salt Lake Temple is now a ruin that is only slowly being rebuilt (the Logan temple , and the Statue of Moroni now decorates some Columbian nobleman's garden, but the Church has survived, and it plans to keep on doing so.

Unlike the other three faiths of the Irrigators, Mormonism explicitly forbids castration.
 
Tonight I will be putting up the Completed submissions thread. It will currently only be the herdsman entries. Before I do this, first, does anyone have a good name for the thread? Second, does anyone have anything they want to add for the herdsmen - this is the last call for the Cowboys before all entries become final.
 
This thread, like the other one, aslo cover other regions of the world, right? Because I made a map and a brief overview for a medieval Argentina. Please tell me what you think! :D



Trade and Economy in the Provincias Unidas Argentinas: A Brief Overview.


"Las tierras del Plata empiezan en las cataratas y terminan en el mar"
"The lands of silver begin in the falls and end in the sea"

The United Provinces of Argentina are united by rivers. Of the dozen of rivers that crisscross the Platean Basin: three are of most importance: the Paraná, the Paraguay and the Uruguay. Traditionally, the northernmost border of the United Provinces begins with the beautiful Cataratas del Iguazú. Here, the lands of the Brazilians end, and also the reach of the Prefectural Naval and thus of the United Provinces. The great Paraná River from this furious and impressive birth, slowly zig-zags through the lands of Paraguayans and Argentines in the cities of Posadas, Encarnación and Ituzaíngo, then joins the River Paraguay and heads south to the twin ports of Corrientes and Resistencia, becomes slower but not less powerful, as it heads to Reconquista, the aptly named city of Paraná, Santa Fe and Rosario, and finally joins with the Uruguay River in the mighty Delta. Beyond the Delta, the confluence of waters and merchants finally reaches the Fresh Sea: the River Plate, and provides water and goods to the great cities of Buenos Aires and Montevideo.

The Paraguay River is born deep into the Matto Grosso, and passes through Guaraní lands until it reaches Asunción and Formosa, to join the Paraná. The Uruguay River separates the provinces of Entre Ríos and Tacuarembó, bringing goods from Negro in Uruguay to the ports of Fray Gualeguaychú, and finally to the mighty River Plate. Other tributaries include the Bermejo and Pilcomayo in Chaco.

Linguists often speak of the "Paraná Gradient" which divides the culture and language of the United Provinces. In the highest points of the Paraguay and Paraná rivers, most people speak only Guaraní (in Cataratas del Iguazú, however, the main dialect is portuñol, a mix of Spanish and Portuguese from nearby Brazil). As the river goes south and passes through Asunción, Spanish with a great number of Guaraní loanwords becomes the dominant dialect. Guaraní gives way to Rosarino Spanish even more south, and finally the thick, nearly European Porteño accent in Buenos Aires. Traders in the river speak Riotellano, an eclectic mix of accents and loanwords from all dialects.

What do these traders transport? Well, mostly the trademark Argentine brevage, drunk by all red-blooded Argentines: Yerba mate. The plantations in Misiones and Paraguay produce Yerba Mate for all the empire, and trade caravans take care of those cities which don't have a port. The trade on Yerba Mate is one of the cornerstones of the empire, and plantation owners thus are highly regarded persons.

Of course, there are many other trade goods: Quebracho wood and citrics from chaco, wheat and soy from Santa Fe and Uruguay, rice and fruit from Entre Ríos and the Delta, and beef (mostly in brine or beef jerky form) from Buenos Aires and Montevideo: not to mention manufactured goods and crafts from all the cities of the rivers.

To protect trade, and the interests of the United Provinces, boats of the Prefectura Naval patrol the waterways constantly. Trained in river and amphibious warfare, they are the terror of the pirates and those who would dare to question the orders from the Fuerte Rosado. The soldiers are mostly light armored due to the warm climate in the northern provinces, and trained in archery and swordsmanship, leaving heavy land attacks to Gauchos loyal to the empire. Their boats range to lightly armored lanchas for everyday patrol, to heavy galleys, the cañoneras stationed in Buenos Aires, to deal with rebellions and as a show of power to the governors of the provinces. Their castles are spread all over the rivers shores', and they are loyal only to the Presidente in Buenos Aires, thus being the main military force keeping the union strong.

The great rivers also provide irrigation for agriculture, the main industry in the United Provinces. Here, the Prefectura does not have that much control, since rains are abundant and keep farms fertile even without irrigation, but irrigated lands are highly defended against the Gauchos and other threats, and most landlords choose to settle there. Thus, usually, where irrigation ends, the realm of the nomadic Gauchos begins. This border is located in the south of Buenos Aires, and the north of Uruguay, where Brazilian lands begin.

Geography also limits irrigation in the north, where the jungles of Paraguay and the dryness of the Gran Chaco limits the empire's reach. In the East, the Pampean Plains give way to the Sierras Cordobesas, and the Intendencias centered in the few oases.

Overall, the United Provinces of Argentina do a good job of keeping the river lands united. But the reach of the Presidente is often the same of the Prefectura Naval, and the rest of the Southern Cone, despite cultural similarities, often follow a different path from the decisions taken on the Fuerte Rosado.

Fernando Ponizi
On the Cultures of the Southern Cone.
 
This thread, like the other one, aslo cover other regions of the world, right? Because I made a map and a brief overview for a medieval Argentina. Please tell me what you think! :D
It will eventually. The problem with the previous thread was there was no real organization - thus why entries are being examined by region. Latin America will be discussed when the former US is almost finalized, and your ideas will be very welcome (my idea is to go - Former US/Canada, Latin America, Oceania/Australasia, Subsaharan Africa, and then we can deal with the Old World)
 
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