A timeline for IA-005-D in the 2013 MES Requiem chronicle.
MES historic crucibles
Actual Crucible: 1861-1865
Four Crucibles ago, the power of Princes took another step forward, but the wisdom of the Halcyon Era and the relative unity of that period collapsed. Unity was shattered within the United States, and the kindred society reflected that shattered unity. A single leader took power, rising like a Caesar from the Senate to place himself over all others by late 1862. His power was short-lived, as the second Caesar assassinated the first within three years, just at the end of the Crucible.
This advancement by murder set the tone for the following decades, as Crucibles always do, and the period from 1865 to 1912 was a brutal one. Kindred prohibitions against violence outside of carefully-constructed rituals broke down, and assassinations were seen as a means to power. This was so devastating that the Masquerade was almost broken, repeatedly, especially in rural areas where legends of vampires were more readily accepted. Many of what mortals describe as lynchings were in fact the destruction of kindred, by both kindred rivals and by mortal Hunters who became very well-organized and powerful.
The early Ku Klux Klan had a secret mission to destroy kindred, spurred on by the rampant violence of the era, and the only salvation of the kindred was that the racist sub-group of the KKK took control of the Klan. Had hatred and racism not taken control of that group, they might be the most potent force of Hunters in the world tonight.
In those dark nights, Conspiracies formed, and kindred knew that this era of violence and destruction could not stand. No kindred, no matter how powerful, was safe, and incalculable knowledge and power were lost as enemies burned one-anothers’ histories, diaries, and journals, killed beloved retainers, herd and allies, and beheaded precious Childer or Sires. The horrors of this era cannot be overstated; hundreds of immortals perished and kindred society was almost destroyed in America by threats from within and without.
Kindred, as a whole, swore that they would never again allow violence to become the norm, for fear that it would escalate again as it did in these decades- and this time, kindred society might very well perish. Kindred looked back to the Halcyon Era for guidance, and re-created the Parliament. This time, rather than Princes coming to power, Conspiracies were the prominent force in Parliament. Cities had been burned, physical resources destroyed, allies slain- only information remained, and not much of that. Those with common goals and aspirations banded together to shape the new world.
Actual Crucible: 1912-1917
Three Crucibles ago, things changed. Approximately 1912, American kindred felt a bit more idealistic, more focused on goals they could look forward to rather than fear. Hope began to overcome the exhaustion of the long era of fire, claw, and ash. Powerful kindred leaders met in Parliament, and they set common ground once again. They reaffirmed the commitment to the power of Boons, to the importance of the Traditions, and to the sanctity of Elysium. They exchanged grave vows to never again allow kindred society to try to settle its differences by vendetta or war, but rather to attack and defend socially through rumor and through catspaws.
Those who broke the rules were met with universal opposition. The only acceptable mass destruction was to end the unlives of those who broke the peace. After the troublemakers were destroyed, kindred returned to the Danse. Driven by the painful lessons of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, kindred created an ironclad set of standards that hold even to these nights. The power of their agreement began to weave its way into the magical “lay of the land”, the same undefinable forces that created Crucibles.
This was the beginning of the mystical effect we now call Cadence. Just as the power of the Traditions has become so inculcated in kindred that magical effects come from those Traditions, so it is with Cadence throughout America. By 1917, it was a mystically-enforced law that Clans, Covenants and Conspiracies would compete with one another, but never again would assassination, murder, and violence become the preferred solution. Those young, stupid kindred who tried to carve their path to power with claw and fire were summarily killed, even by their closest allies, as a threat to the overall peace on which the safety of every kindred depended.
Actual Crucible: 1960-1965
Two Crucibles ago, Parliament disbanded as a formal body, no longer holding regular meetings, structure or agendas. The underlying principles had been set into the infrastructure of the country, locked into the minds and bodies of the kindred within the nation, and Parliament was no longer needed for that purpose. Rather than let Parliament become a potentially tyrannical body, it was voted Parliament be resolved. On one hand, that earned those kindred a tremendous amount of respect, as wise, self-sacrificing leaders, willing to place the good of kindred over their own power. On the other hand, it also marked those same leaders as idealistic, perhaps even naive, for sacrificing personal power for the greater good. They are both lauded and derided for that decision even to these nights.
Without a formal structure like Parliament, the Conspiracies became less structured, but perhaps more powerful. These nights, no one knows how many Conspiracies exist. Traditionally, open leaders of conspiracies have been accorded more respect by many kindred than Covenant or Clan leaders – this is in part because of their wisdom, and in part because their numbers and assets are unknown. Attacking a Conspiracy may mean undermining a handful of kindred, or it might mean starting a social conflict against hundreds. Kindred, risk-averse as always, are very wary of the Conspiracies, and give respect rather than risk unnecessary conflict. With the previous dissolution of national covenant structures, Conspiracies remain the primary way for ambitious Kindred to amass a national power base.
Actual Crucible: 1988-1992
While the economy in the U.S. boomed, and the borders were becoming restricted, the citizenry began to take on a new view of heritage. They searched for their roots in order to better define themselves. This culture was reflected within the Kindred population as well. As early Crucibles forged power for the Covenant, City, then Conspiracy, the last Crucible returned focus to something that can’t change once embraced: Clan.
In this era, information networks and connections available through Conspiracies allowed family Dynasties and Lineages to be confirmed, created, or forged. Being able to define these kinds of pedigrees afforded several advantages – ties of loyalty to clan mates, information and teachings passed from generation to generation, and a support structure independent of Covenant or Conspiracy. Though the power of the Clans did not return as strongly as it was in ancient times, the Clan once again became an integral part of the Danse in America.
The history of kindred civilization in northern Iowa.
Native American kindred had long dwelled in the area before this time, but they had little organization, existing largely as solitary and nomadic predators.
While European kindred had passed through the area before, it was not until 1862 that the first permanent European kindred presence was established in Northern Iowa with a small coterie settling in Fort Dodge and claiming Webster County for themselves. The coterie drove out or slew other kindred who intruded. Unknown to others, this trio were Ordo Dracul of the Wallachian Rite, who had retreated from the violence of the era to carry out their research free from external intrusions.
By the early 1870s, other kindred arrived in limited numbers, many carrying with them great aspirations of dominion over these lands only newly populated to such an extent that they could support more than a single kindred. They clustered together in small bands, often affiliated by Clan or Covenant, claimed praxis over one or more counties, and inevitably wound up in conflict with one another.
The conflicts were fierce and often violent. A good number of the fires reported in burgeoning towns between the 1870s and the early 1900s were the result of kindred assaults on one another. Many of the newly-arrived kindred died in the violence of this era and more than a few mortals became hunters after witnessing too much.
At the dawn of a new Crucible, the hostility of the previous era at last ebbed and faded away. The local kindred, tired of the violence, largely united behind a Gangrel Invictus named Solomon Pierre L'Enfant.
Prince L'Enfant, in order to cement the peace, bequeathed to each Clan certain territories across the newly unified Praxis of Northern Iowa. Private agreements concerning these deeds are rumored to have been a central part of how Prince L'Enfant acquired the Praxis.
Clan Daeva: Marshall County (~30,000)
Clan Gangrel: Franklin & Wright Counties (~33,000)
Clan Mekhet: Story County (~24,000)
Clan Nosferatu: Boone County (~27,000)
Clan Ventrue: Cerro Gordo County (~25,000)
Carthian Movement: Hamilton County (~19,000)
Circle of the Crone:Calhoun County (~17,000)
Invictus: Hardin County (~21,000)
Lancea Sanctum: Greene County (~16,000)
The following Counties were held by the Praxis and were declared neutral grounds were visitors and the unaligned might feed:
- Humboldt County (~13,000)
- Webster County (~34,000)
During the earliest years of the Praxis, kindred affairs were largely centered around the city of Fort Dodge, one of the largest and most rail-accessible cities in the Praxis.
Prince L'Enfant’s reign was one of peace for the most part. However, in the waning years the changes that had taken place in the mortal world began placing great pressure again upon the local kindred. Territories that were initially of relatively close population and prestige had changed dramatically.
By the close of WWII, with focus once again returning to local affairs, many of the Clans and Covenants were clamoring for a reworking of the territories that were based on historic claims. The matter proved a hot topic and one not easily resolved even by Prince L'Enfant's careful diplomacy. No one wished a return to the violence of the previous era, but a large number of kindred were also categorically opposed to changing grants that were supposed to have been given in perpetuity.
By 1960, with the matter not yet resolved after more than a decade of discourse and greater inequality than ever in place it seemed that violence might again erupt. This was only foreclosed by the beginning of a new Crucible and Prince L'Enfant stepping down in favor of a new Prince who promised change.
Everything was once again up for grabs.
Population data for the domain and the largest cities therein.
Domain population: 28,043
- Marshalltown: 981
- Fort Dodge: 672
- Nevada: 350
Domain population: 79,467
- Marshalltown: 3,218
- Fort Dodge: 3,095
- Webster City: 1,339
- Eldora: 1,268
- Mason City: 1,183
Domain population: 156,935
- Marshalltown: 6,240
- Fort Dodge: 3,586
- Boone: 3,330
- Mason City: 2,510
- Webster City: 1,848
Domain population: 202,177
- Marshalltown: 8,914
- Boone: 6,520
- Fort Dodge: 4,871
- Mason City: 4,007
- Webster City: 2,829
Domain population: 258,366
- Fort Dodge: 12,162
- Marshalltown: 11,544
- Boone: 8,880
- Mason City: 6,747
- Webster City: 4,613
Domain population: 259,818
- Fort Dodge: 15,543
- Marshalltown: 13,374
- Mason City: 11,230
- Boone: 10,347
- Webster City: 5,208
Domain population: 287,217
- Mason City: 20,065
- Fort Dodge: 19,347
- Marshalltown: 15,731
- Boone: 12,451
- Ames: 6,270
Domain population: 300,898
- Mason City: 23,304
- Fort Dodge: 21,895
- Marshalltown: 17,373
- Boone: 11,886
- Ames: 10,261
Domain population: 310,499
- Mason City: 27,080
- Fort Dodge: 22,904
- Marshalltown: 19,240
- Ames: 12,555
- Boone: 12,373
Domain population: 321,722
- Mason City: 27,980
- Fort Dodge: 25,115
- Ames: 22,898
- Marshalltown: 19,821
- Boone: 12,164
Domain population: 333,994
- Mason City: 30,642
- Fort Dodge: 28,399
- Ames: 27,003
- Marshalltown: 22,521
- Boone: 12,468