Author Archives: Matthias von Würzburg

Nordenfjord 3Q 2019 Business Meeting Minutes

Attending: Karyn, Sara, Craig, Katie, Richard, Mark, Marc, Amelia, Kevin, Matt G., Avis, Elisa, Tony. Also attending by conference call were Stacey and an unknown number. Matt J., Stan, and Francesca attended via Google Meet.

Meeting was called to order at 7:40PM.

Officer Reports

  • Seneschal – congratulations to Matthias on his Silver Crescent as well as being named next East Kingdom Webminister. This means she will need a new deputy, and would like to see if anyone would like mentoring as to the role of Seneschal. We are currently waiting to hear back on the status of our name change, and we would like to poll for full status once this is clear.
  • Chatelaine – Avis is a new member in attendance, no new external contacts since the last meeting.
  • MOAS – new reporting sechedule for the MOAS is January and June – please send any important A&S news to her for reporting to Kingdom. St. Eligius is coming soon, and if you want to exhibit, you MUST pre-register this year. Would like to plan a shire apple picking outing, details on Facebook group. If you are interested in retaining for the upcoming reign, please let her know.
  • Exchequer – no change in available funds, waiting on confirmation from Ostgardr that the Clarkstown check was deposited.
  • Webminister – stepping up to Kingdom role, will work with Marc to transition role and make sure that new site is available after name change.

Informal Vote – extended term for Seneschal

As there were no other submissions for this position, show of hands confirmed an additional 1-year term for Karyn.

Clarkstown Classes – all starting at 7PM until 8:30PM, schedule is available on the shire website.

Committee Requests – we would like to establish the following committees and are seeking volunteers: Event Planning, Event Sites, and Financial Committee. Please let us know.

We would like to explore more group outings, whether they are A&S or informal social outings.

Meeting concluded at 8:53PM.

2Q 2019 Business Meeting Minutes

June 26, 2019, 7:30PM
New City Library, New City, NY

Meeting to order at 7:45PM

Members present: Karyn, Sara, Richard, Marc, Kevin, Craig, Katie, Matt J, Francesca, Amelia

New member: Elisa


Officer Reports:


  • Term as seneschal is up for renewal, would like to stand. Any competing bids are due by August 1.
  • September meeting, vote to be held.
  • Novice Day chatelaine table?
  • Clarkstown is processing payment from classes




  • Calligraphy class had the best attendance
  • Connor made a new tunic
  • Karyn made a new tunic
  • Sara displayed at Kingdom A&S and Mudthaw
  • Sara designed a new belt favor for Queen Fortune and presented her with three favors
  • Sara Won Complex & Intricate with her locket at Balfar’s
  • Sara recognized as Journeyman in Athena’s Thimble at Balfar’s


  • No new contacts


  • Discussed possible social media updates with the name change
  • Upcoming office succession possibility

Clarkstown Classes

  • List of classes? (Kumihimo? Calligraphy? Sewing a pouch?)
  • Teachers?
  • Scheduling

Committee Planning:

  • Event planning committee (2-4 members)
  • Site discovery committee (2-4 members)
  • Volunteers by September meeting

Meeting adjourned at 8:51PM

Letters of Intent Due – Seneschal

Letters of Intent for the office of Seneschal are due by August 1, 2019 to the current Seneschal, Cailleach Dhe. Please submit your Letter of Intent by postal mail, in person, or by email to

Lady Cailleach is currently willing to extend her term of service by one year at this time, but all applicants are welcome.

The vote is to be held at a business meeting in September for the term beginning October 1.

1Q 2019 Business Meeting Minutes

The first quarter business meeting for Nordenfjord was held at the New City Library in New City on Wednesday, March 27 at 7:30PM.

Officers present:
Sensechal – Cailleach
MOAS – Arabella
Exchequer – Francesca
Webminister – Matthias

Members present:
Craig, Katie, Mark, Amelia.

Meeting was called to order at 7:30PM.

Officer Reports:

Webminister: pending his warrant being approved, Marc is now my deputy webminister. All officers are encouraged to have a deputy to help ensure the continuation of the group. No other newsworthy items.

Seneschal: Our classes held in conjunction with Clarkstown went extremely well. We will receive a small portion of the fees to cover our costs. We are sending a thank-you note to the Parks department signed by all of us, and we will begin planning for further set of classes to be held in the fall.

It’s time to start Pennsic planning.

Reporting on behalf of the Chatelaine, we had a few newcomer contacts come in through the website (Webminister: yay!) and those were routed to neighboring groups as that’s where the contacts lived (Webminister: boo!).

MOAS: Classes indeed went well. Our reports are in on time, and I have stepped into the position of Deputy Kingdom Minister of Arts and Sciences for the Central Region.

Exchequer: funds are still at the same level they were, held for us by Ostgardr.

Clarkstown Class Wrapup: kudos to all. This went from an idea to execution in almost no time at all. For future classes it was agreed that we should be a bit more organized. Per Craig and Katie, the origami class went well but the paper could have been a bit more distinct in colors between sides to make folding a little easier. Richard did an excellent job on the origami class though. Matthias believes that the calligraphy class could have gone a little better than it did in terms of participation but that overall it went very well.

Additional Business: it was suggested that the group form two committees – one for event planning and another for site search and evaluation. We will discuss at the next business meeting and look to formally seat volunteers for these committees. Upcoming events and carpooling opportunities for such were discussed.

The next meeting was suggested for either June 12 or 19, with a poll being planned.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:12PM.

October 2018 Business Meeting Minutes

The October business meeting was held on Wednesday, October 24 at the New City Library in New City.

Officers present:  Karyn (Seneschal), Sara (MOAS), Richard (Chatelaine), Amelia (Exchequer) and Matt J. (Webminister).

Others present:  Francesca, Katie, Craig, Matt G., Marc, Stacey, Kevin, and Mark.

Meeting came to order at 7:30PM.

First order of business was officer reports:

  • Webminister – new website design has begun for when name change is approved.  We will need to work to get administration of public Facebook transferred to active members.
  • MOAS – upcoming sessions – 11/1 webinar for the A&S office open house, and a hood-making workshop on 11/15.  In addition our largesse contributions were handed over to Kingdom at Coronation.  Amelia also made and donated 12 scroll savers.
  • Chatelaine – wrap-up from the 10/2 demo, good publicity for group.  We acquired a few new prospective members from the demo as well.  Discussed upcoming classes with Clarkstown, details were in the flyer.
  • Exchequer – no change in funds held in trust by Ostgardr.
  • Seneschal – discussed possible event venues including Street School now that we have a working relationship with Clarkstown, also possibility of the Pascack Community Center even though there are concerns with the kitchen.

Signatures from all paid members were then collected for the paperwork to request the formal name and device change.  Signatories were Karyn, Sara, Matt J., Francesca, Amelia, Craig, Katie, Stacey, Richard, Marc, and Matt G.

The date of the next meeting was discussed, possibly in early December due to the upcoming holidays, but no decision at the current time.  Dates TBA.  Discussed social meetings for the group as well as A&S meetings upcoming.

Only one candidate submitted a letter of intent for the Exchequer’s office, being Francesca.  Given some residency concerns, a waiver was requested and received from both the Kingdom Seneschal and the Kingdom Exchequer.  The vote was then held by voice, with unanimous consent.  Voting members were Karyn, Sara, Matt J., Amelia, Craig, Katie, Stacey, Richard, Marc, and Matt G.

There being no further business the meeting was closed at 8:55PM.

September 2018 Business Meeting Minutes

Norðfjǫrðr held its September Business Meeting on Wednesday, September 26th at the Cityline Restaurant in New City, NY.  The meeting convened at 8:00PM with the following members attending: Karyn (Senechal), Amelia (Exchequer), Richard (Chatelaine), Matt J. (Webminister), Sara (MOAS), Stacey, Marc, Craig, Katie, Francesca, Maria, and Matt G.  Alienor, the Ostgardr Seneschal, was also in attendance.


  • Karyn welcomed new members and asked for everyone to make introductions.  New members included Matt G., Marc, Craig, and Katie.
  • New Meeting Space: due to issues with our current venue, it was suggested that we explore new options for meeting space.  Maria suggested Palisades Center which has public meeting spaces, as well as New City and Nanuet Libraries.  She also offered her studio space in Garnerville.  We also discussed having more social and A&S outings in addition to our regular business meetings.  Alienor noted that Whyt Whey generally does quarterly meetings with an additional meeting prior to their Cloisters Demo, which is this Sunday, 9/30.
  • Officer Reports:
    • MOAS – Sara advised that we had done several projects including making favors for Queen Caoilfhionn and for Princess Vienna, as well as participating in the largesse donation project for Trimaris.
    • Exchequer – no change in funds, all still held in the Ostgardr account.
    • Webminister – updated on transition to Google for Non-Profits, discussed upcoming Social Media policy and availability of Hangouts Meet for videoconferencing.
    • Chatelaine – discussed new members including Matt G. who is now a paid member, as well as discussing how demo with Clarkstown Parks was obtained, as well as upcoming classes in the winter and spring and calls for volunteers for these classes.
    • Seneschal – officer reports were submitted on time.  Noted Trimaris largesse donations.  Updated on upcoming demo on 10/6, timing for us is from 10AM-2PM.
  • Name Change Vote – final review of proposal, memberships of those present was verified via census or blue card.  Name change was passed 11-1.  Voting members were Matt J., Sara, Maria, Karyn, Craig, Katie, Stacey, Amelia, Francesca, Richard, Marc, and Matt G.
  • Call for letters of intent for Exchequer – Amelia’s term is expiring and requests for letters of intent to be submitted by 10/10 to Karyn, either via postal mail (address published in Pikestaff) or via email.  Letters will be published to the website by 10/14, with a vote at the October Business Meeting on 10/24.  Change in office will be effective as of 11/1.
  • Next business meeting is set for Wednesday, October 24.  Venue TBD.
  • Matt J. asked for a round of applause to thank Amelia for her long and capable service as Exchequer.
  • Alienor had asked if we intended to release the currently-registered arms if the new submission is passed and approved.  The general consensus was to retain the old device as it does form a significant element of our group history.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 9:03PM.

Minutes by Herr Matthias von Würzburg, Deputy Seneschal

New Honors for Norðfjǫrðr Citizens

Honors have recently been granted to some of our fine citizens of Norðfjǫrðr at summer events!

At the East Kingdom 50th Year celebration, our own exchequer, Lady Amelia Joan (Molly), was inducted into the Order of the Silver Wheel for her service to the Kingdom.  

Lady AmeliaJoan and her Silver Wheel scroll, EK50.

And at East Kingdom Court at Pennsic War XLVII, our Minister of Arts and Sciences, Lady Arabella De Mere, was inducted into the Order of the Maunche for her work with tablet weaving and other arts.

Congratulations to both!

Shire Name Change Proposal

Norðfjǫrðr Name Change Proposal

In a recent meeting with the Kingdom and regional officers, it was strongly suggested that the Shire consider a name change in order to alleviate confusion with other local groups and establish a more distinct local identity.  To this end several of the Shire’s officers worked on developing a potential new name that would embrace the regional identity of Rockland County and allow us to project that identity within the Kingdom and Society.


Name Confusion

There have been several incidents over the last few years wherein the identity of our group has been conflated with another local group.  The full Icelandic name (Norðfjǫrðr) is extremely distinct, but nearly impossible to type or render consistently. The commonly-used “Nordenfjord” has a similar sound to the older group centered around Kingston, Nordenhal, as well as a passing similarity to the group to our immediate east, Northpass.

For a group that has not yet reached full status, this kind of confusion can be crippling.  Things we should be credited for may not be properly attributed and these mistakes can be time-consuming to iron out.  Here are recent examples of this confusion:

  1. Arabella was awarded a Golden Lyre at our group’s King and Queens’ A&S and Bardic Championships.  The award was entered into the Order of Precedence as being awarded in Nordenhal.
  2. Our officers were repeatedly contacted for information about Dancing Fox, which is an event hosted in Nordenhal.
  3. Arabella was contacted for Gold Key for a Nordenhal event.
  4. When we were working on coordinating Jadidja’s AOA, the wording of the scroll as presented mentioned her work in Nordenhal, and not Nordenfjord.  We were thankfully able to have this corrected before the scroll was given final wording, but the error was read in the official court presentation (we have video of this).
  5. A rare example of the reverse of this mistake was on the scroll for Cailleach’s Silver Wheel – which while presented in Nordenhal, states on the scroll that it was presented in Nordenfjord.

All of these conflations add up over time to clearly indicate that there is no obvious way to differentiate these groups by name alone.  People see the first syllable of the name and follow their natural inclinations. If we are going to be distinct, both in identity and in geographical headspace, we will need to take clear action to achieve this.

Proposed Name

The process to try to pick a potential new name for the group was not without challenges – we wanted to maintain a local identity that was specific to Rockland County as well as to find something that we could call our own.  We had several proposals ranging from Latin for “rocky ground” (Terra Saxea), to a German translation of Bear Mountain (Bärenberg) to names building off of geographical features (Palisades Passage, Red Tor, etc). We had a solid proposal with a device based on the Halve Maen, the ship of Henry Hudson, but this just missed being acceptably period and the consulting heralds did not advise using it.

Eventually we found inspiration in the iconic stone-clad bridges over the Palisades Parkway.  The name would invoke these classic structures and be present in all aspects of group identity – name, device, populace badge.

Proposed Name

The Shire of Stonebridges

The name calls to mind the many stone-clad bridges that cross the Palisades Parkway from Orangeburg to Stony Point.  The imagery is so iconic to the area that the local professional baseball team used it for “The Bridge Bar” in their stadium.  

The feel of the name is period-appropriate; one could imagine a small village in the west of England that had a few stone bridges over a small river having such a name.  The plural version of the name was chosen to distinguish the name from others in the Kingdom as well as to indicate the many bridges that do span the Palisades.

Potential Conflicts

There are two possible groups in the Kingdom that would draw potential name confusion:

  1. Barony of the Bridge.  This is the group in Rhode Island, centered on Providence.  As they are a barony as well as a singular object, this should not present a conflict.
  2. Canton of Brokenbridge.  This is the Brooklyn group.  The name is a singular instance as opposed to plural and is also alliterative, which should minimize confusion with our name.

There is in addition a defunct group that existed in Ansteorra until 2009 named “Stone Bridge” which the Kingdom of Ansteorra maintains the registration for.  Written permission to conflict would be needed from their Kingdom Herald’s office if the name is determined to be too much of a conflict. Initial conflict checking by heralds we consulted did not seem to indicate that this would be much of a problem if at all.

Proposed Device

Per pale wavy vert and azure, a bridge of two spans throughout and in chief a laurel wreath argent.


The device uses green and blue to evoke the shores of the Hudson river which creates our natural boundary with Northpass, using the per pale wavy divider just in case people were unclear on the concept of water versus land.  A single silver laurel wreath at the top indicates our group status, and the two-arched bridge directly speaks to the iconic bridges from which we drew our inspiration for this entire project.

The decorative archways match the decoration on the bridges themselves, and the battlements were added at the request of the heralds to maintain a period feel.

The look is distinct and should present well at events and in official usage.

Proposed Populace Badge

The actual badge would be drawn with larger brick spacing, but maintains the visual identity of the group and would be a clear indicator of group identity that group members could wear at events.

Possible Additional Identity Elements

We also have the opportunity to secure a distinct name for our Herald office.  Other groups have these titles, such as our sponsoring group of Østgarðr (Seahorse Pursuivant).  Possibilities would include Archway, Keystone, Fieldstone, or others. Once the office is full, we can explore these possibilities.


No one wants to forget or minimize the hard work and devotion that went into the formation and naming of our group.  Particularly that of Lord Zachary Wolfhunter, who sadly passed away in 2009 before the group really came into its own.  One idea would be to have a memorial thrown weapons tournament at one of our events and award a specific prize to be named in his honor.  We can keep our legacy alive while moving forward.

You can also download this document as a PDF by clicking here:  Name Change Proposal

April 2018 Business Meeting

The April Business Meeting will be held on Monday, April 9 at the City Line Family Restaurant in New City, NY at 7:30PM.  We will be in the side room just to the right of the main entrance.  There is a map below for your convenience.

The agenda for the meeting is as follows:

  1.  Shire name change proposal and discussion
  2.  East Kingdom 50th Anniversary camping
  3.  Novice Day plans/Rusted Woodlands cooperation
  4.  Potential event planning
  5.  Officer reports

There will be no issues up for a vote during this meeting.

If you have anything you’d like added to the agenda, please contact the Seneschal.


November 30 Demo

On Thursday, November 30th the group turned out to present a demo centered around period food and drink for the local campus of Empire State College in Nanuet, NY.

Many members contributed dishes to the tasting:

  • Lady Cailleach Dhé ingen Chiaráin made oat bannocks, an iron-age fried cake.
  • Lady AmeliaJoan made pizelles, possibly the earliest known kind of cookie.
  • Richard made lamb hedgehogs as well as scotch eggs.
  • Herr Matthias von Würzburg made hais (date and nut balls) as well as period gingerbread.
  • Lady Zillah al Sighira al Hurra from Northpass contributed an excellent presentation on cordials and their medicinal use as well as some sekanjubin for sampling.
  • Dr. Denise Kawasaki from Empire State College contributed a period Brie tart.

We also had a chance to present an award to one of our shire members, with Jadidja (called Jade) receiving her AOA from Cailleach after it was read into Court by Their Majesties at Hundred Minutes’ War two weeks previously.

Here are some pictures from the demo, you can click on each image to view the full-size version.

Oat bannocks.

Oat bannocks.





Scotch eggs

Scotch eggs

Brie tart

Brie tart, 14th c.

AOA Scroll.

Jadidja’s AOA Scroll.