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It was the summer of A. S. 7 (1973) when Gavin Reynes (mka as Dale Osborn Rains, a college theater professor) first heard of an event of the Society for Creative Anachronism somewhere in the Midrealm and was impressed. But it wasn’t until two years later, while he was directing Macbeth and needed some swords to use in the production, that a student came to him and told him of a friend in the SCA who could lend us a couple of his swords. Gavin was excited to hear again of the SCA, and he asked for the good friend’s address. After several letters to this friend, Baroness Margarethe of South Downs, (yes, those were the days when folks still wrote letters), the Baroness invited Gavin to come down to South Downs and attend the Red Tower Tourney.
At Red Tower, Gavin learned there were no SCA groups at all in South Carolina. Baroness Margarethe provided him with information on how to start a group, the address of friends in Windmasters’ Hill, and the address of the Seneschal of the Kingdom of the East (Atlantia was a Principality of the East at that time).
After much correspondence among Gavin, Baroness Margarethe, Lords Robin and Brian of Windmasters’ Hill, and the Kingdom seneschal, Gavin gathered seven college students to form the incipient Shire of Nottinghill Coill. And on 29 January a. s. 11 (1976), Gavin received a Warrant of Appointment as Seneschal of the Shire of Nottinghill Coill..
On 21 January A. S 12 (1978) with the help of the good folks of both South Downs and Windmasters’ Hill, the Shire held its very first event.
Several Cantons of the Shire began forming around the state, and the population of the Shire grew to the point of applying to the Kingdom to become a Barony. And on Principality Twelfth Night A. S. 14 (1980) in the Canton of the Guardians of the Sacred Stone, Their Majesties granted Nottinghill Coill’s petition for barony status.
And so began the adventure of this great Barony.
21 January 1978
First Nottinghill Coill Event Fllyer