Alternate History

History of Vinland (The Unexpected Kingdom)

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Vinland is a name given to North America by the Norse Vikings who settled the area following the first two settlements created by Thorvald, and Leif Ericksson 
Kingdom of Vinland
Timeline: The Unexpected Kingdom
Vinland flag Vinland CoA (The Kalmar Union).svg
Flag Coat of Arms

First Settlement

Settlement aroung 1100-1150 after last contact with Europe

Initial Settlement

The First Settlement of Vinland traces its routes back to Thorvald and Leif Eriksson, two Norse Viking brothers who both made multiple voyages to the continent, and eventually established the first two Permanent settlements. 

These Settlements of Jennestad, and Mossem eventually grew thanks to continued Norse/Viking immigration in which new and better lands were available, while successful the light population of Scandinavia in general only brought the settlements a few thousand immigrants (about 3000-5000 Total made the journey from Scandinavia) from Scandinavia, but did bring a string of constant immigration from Greenland over a few decades. 

These Settlements following about 50-100 years of immigration, local population growth, and the ability to secure arable farmland allowed for a vastly expanded area that could be exploited ended up securing a bright future for the settlers which now numbered around 50,000 to 60,000 by the end of the European Settlement era (which for the most part is named incorrectly but is named so due to the fact that the Norse people still had some semblance of control)

No Contact

About 1100 the Settlers at Vinland and Greenland lost most contact with Europe, and the minimal expeditions sent to Iceland and back to Europe yielded no results. The Settlers of Vinland proper decided that with this lack of contact, something had happened and it was their duty to continue on and prevent the extinction of their people. With this Vinland expanded South from newfoundland into the continent for years which established a large people of peace with minor issues, next to no conflict, and a expanding population.

Over the course of this period Greenland started to Depopulate as well and after about another 50 years Greenland had been all but abandoned except by a single fairly large settlement on the South-western Coast of about 12,000. With this depopulation and the increased available population in Continental Vinland the people were able to secure much more territory than normal with hundreds of farms with viable crops being established and harvested in increasing numbers each year. The increasing ability to farm and settle as they continued south began to create an exponential population explosion over the years and over a period of 100 years (From 1180 to 1280-90) of centralized growth over a vast space the population hit a Zenith of about 600,000 before the central governmental powers in Greenland and the now cities of Jennestad and Mossem, collapsed. This collapsed led to a population decline due to various infighting and situations in which various Vinnish kingdoms formed and developed independently from each other. 

Warring Kingdom Period

The Vinland Warring Kingdoms period was a time in which a large amount of Vinland split apart into various Kingdoms and developed independantly but in a heavily positive fashion. The New need to fight amongst each other as well as to protect from native tribes led to the resurgence in heavily armed warfare in which the Vins' Viking ancestors were particularly good at. This resurgence led to large portion of the kingdoms developing their own large population centers and able economies in which farms were given more stock and food production expanded heavily. This heavily Ingrained the Vinns in the land they had settled which by this point had hit the Hudson Bay and was pushing into the continental wilderness more and more every year.


Vinnish ships fighting during the Warring kingdoms period

This period in itself led to the Vinnish kingdoms developing the mineral resources of their areas more heavily and allowing for the first truly needed standing armies of the various kingdoms. The kingdoms themselves began their own private wars against natives as well but not nearly as often as when they fought amonst themselves. Finally after about 60 years of very inconsistant conflict, and the organization of various alliances the Main Three Powers of Velothhold, Jennestad, and Torvyald had established their own alliance systems between the many large and small kingdoms of the Vins. By this point their own distinct dialect of Old Norse had begun to develop giving them their own 

distinct language to a degree from their ancestors. Now over 250 years post settlement the areas had developed into their own culture with major issues facing them ahead.

The Warring Kingdoms period Finally ended when the Kingdom of Jennestad overcame the other two in a quick but bloody conflict in which the royal families of the Torvyald, and Velothhold were completely wiped out and Velothhold had been completely burned to the ground. The Warring kingdoms period is recorded to have finished about 1380-1390 after many of the kingdoms had in fact developed their own populations and infrastructure heavily.

Warring Kingdoms, Dark blue = heavy population, light blue = sparsely populated-farmland

major areas during the Warring kingdoms. Dark blue is populated, light blue is lightly populated or unimportant

However during this time the Torvyald who apart from one of their princes, and some of their other nobility which had not been killed, had explored and traveled as far down as the Great Lakes and had built Ships to sail down across them and map them, only a small amount of which had been mapped, and seen leading to one of the greatest accomplishments of the next government.

The Jannestad Dynasty

The Major Main line Family of the Eriksson family who had first settled in Vinland at this point had secured total control of Vinland as a full and well-to-do Kingdom, and by this point had secured a large population of almost 1.5 million inheriting many of these people from the larger kingdoms which had previously developed. Styling themselves as the Jannestad Dynasty and abandoning their previous surnames (which at this point had been Eriksson in honor of Torvald, and Leif and their father) Migrated the Capital farther south to a new city of Aldhold more central to the new kingdom. 

This new kingdom spent the next 120 years in a period of relative peace in which the Jannestad Dynasty had built up a very respectable and powerful kingdom. These years also began a cold war between Tribes which had remained in the Area, and the Kingdom of Vinland. The Tribes had secured a sort of alliance against Vinnish incursions into their territory by which at this point had extended well into the continent, secured territory around the Great lakes, and a large portion of the Hudson bay area. This was the greatest extent of the Jannestad Dynasty proper and eventually Brought about the re-use of Viking longships to raid and Trade along the Great Lakes, and to a degree Travel down the Mississippi River. This culminated in a large slew of very small but effective trading posts down the river. Independent Traders and Entrepreneurs always sought to trade down the river to secure the large profits offered in trading for Native jewelry, while not extremely valuable through gold, but was valuable through its craftsmanship and ability to be put in the personal collections of businessmen, nobles, and even the Jannestad Family. 

The Jannestad dynasty also managed by this point to use Steel to a large degree along with iron in its weaponry and over the 120 year period of their reign grew the population significantly following the age old saying of their ancestors. "Protect your People, and they will Grow to make you Proud". The population at the End of the Jannestad dynasty had reached about 3.5 million and the first true census had been taken by the end of this period, but was not continued until almost 1850.

Alstad Dyansty

The Alstad Dynasty took over following a political marriage in which the Alstads, a Southern family had come around to supercede the core Jannestad family in power, and influence. This led to a high profile political marriage in which the Jannestad family married their next in line daughter names Leifia Jannestad, to a Alstad Noble names, Aksel Alstad. Following the untimely death of Leifia and the lack of Heirs the Alstads inherited the throne over the Janestads allowing the Alstad family to marry who they pleased. While looking to create a Civil war, the Alstad and Jannestad family did very well in avoiding such a problem and allowed the Jannestads to keep their many cities, castles, and strongholds developed and governed over the centuries. 

The Alstad dynasty ruled from about 1510 to 1620 following the extenuating circumstances of the English arrival nearly a century after takeover from the Jannestad family. This Period is marked by larger expansion farther south into the continent, the securing of more and more territory along the coast and the establishment of one of the largest southern settlements to date along a river. The Settlement named Achim developed into a very large city of almost 250,000 due to its climate, location, and ability to send food stuffs north to the less agriculturally able old north cities. This became the Basis for returning ships and the development of better ships as well. The City of Achim became the heart of the kingdom agriculturally and to a degree trade wise around 1560 and continued to develop heavily during the period and managed to secure even more trade rights with southern tribes with which good relations remained.

Some of the great wealth of the city flowed in from much farther south than many thought existed. The Vinnish longships which in some cases had reached the Gulf of Mexica managed to meet up with an advanced native civilization known as the Aztecs, or Mexica. While contact initially was limited due to the Vinns lack of ability to travel fully down to them eventually after the establishment of Achim, larger and more well prepared ships managed to strike up trade with them and secured a long stream of gold trade to the Kingdom. While initially worshipped as gods this was not to last as the trade orient of later ship captains proved this wrong. The Establishment and disease brought with the Vinns had also served to level the population heavily during this period, and by 1510 they had reached the zenith of their population decline. However when the Spanish arrived in 1519, the First contact between the Aztecs, Vinns, and Spanish was nearly obliterated by two of the three parties and only kept in record by the Vinnish traders. Following this all contact between the Aztecs, and the Vinns ceased which began the first true decline of the Alstad Dynasty as a moderate flow of southern gold and the relative lack of goldmines in the kingdom proper led to an economic issue as gold became a very rare commodity until the opening of the first new gold mines almost a decade later. The new stream of gold led to a new era of prosperity as the Kingdom of Vinland continues its internal growth and building up of existing cities. The cold war between Tribes and the Vinns continues preventing much expansion and by 1600 the Alstad dynasty was reaching its prime. However less than 15 years into the Vinnish golden age their encounters with the English settlers attempting to settle the continent in the Hudson bay (named by the English) and they sporadic settlements up and down the east coast, led to a large plague which led to the complete and utter devastation of the Kingdoms population. At a population of 15 million in 1615, in less than three years, they had been leveled to almost 4.5 million with only the most northern cities being largely unaffected, or left to a point of sustainability.

5 Years later in 1620, English soldiers led by a company, sponsored by their monarch King James of England and Scotland (primarily England in this case) conquered the remaining people of the Vinnish kingdom leaving awestruck Englishman attempting to reorganize a vast new territory that was on par with Spain. Almost 30 years post conquering by the English the Vinns were still being fully accounted for and subjugated. This ended the Alstad Dynasty lasting from 1510-1623 (approximately)

English/British Colonization and Rule

In 1623 the Alstad dynasty finally fell completely to the English following a disease wiping the majority of the Vinnish population out. Following this English colonials, and other opportunists took up residence in Vinland and expanded many systems with modern technology in earnest in order to get greater yields in Food, Resources, and cash crops. The Vinnish farming however continues in earnest as the English and later British had essentially no need of managing their very organized farming system and even allowed the use of new technologies to increase their output significantly.

Following the outright death of millions of Vins, a previous culture system rendered outdated by the relative successes of the previous kingdoms as well as other older laws from the 1300's was changed very subtly and families began to have 5 or more children which brought about massive exponential Growth. This in itself was taken advantage of by the British as the local Vinns and English settlers alikes expanded along the Hudson, deep into the continental wildernesses and even the Great lakes. Most Expansion stopped around the time France itself claimed a large swath of territory from what was called Louisiana, all the way up to the Vinnland territory border surrounding the Great lakes.

Around 1750 the Vins became involved into a colonial war over the British American colonies, and the French American colonies in which it was eventually called the French-Indian war. This war became a large part of the newly Resurgent Vinnish pride as Vinnish and American colonial militias were led by British officers. This war spurred on the Resurgent Vinns, who had been recovering population wise heavily and contributed near the end of 1760 almost 75% of all militia troops used in the conflict. By 1763 when the war had ended the French were forced to sign the Treaty of Paris which Ceded the French possessions in the Caribbean and Part of Louisiana to the British. Following the end of hostilities increased taxes to pay for the war which angered both the American colonists, and the Vinns.

The Vins who now had access to the arms stores and vast training from the British following the war in 1765 officially declared independence. On April 19th 1765 the Vins declared their grievances to the King of Britain, and Assaulted the Historical capital of Althold, as well as the British colonial capital at New Edinburgh (OTL Quebec City) thus starting the Vinnish war of Independence.

Vinnish war of Independence

This war officially began on April 19th 1765 when the Vins waged their own war of independence against the British Empire. With a Population of almost 17 million Vins, and just over 1.5 million British immigrants, the War was nearly Decided from the Beginning. The Vinnish Militia from the French and Indian war was formed back into the Royal army, with the Descendants of the Historic Alstad Family taking the mantle as the ruling monarchs once again. And hence the Kingdom of Vinland was once again formed.

The war for the most part when very badly for the initial parts of the war, as the Vins alone had been defeated regardless of the large population. Their militia while being trained from the previous war, was no match for the British armed forces, and for a steady 7 years the Vinnish forces suffered defeat after defeat at the hands of the British. However in 1772 a Man by the Name of George Washington intervened in the Execution of almost 100 Vinnish prisoners in New York. this intervention made him flee New England (same as OTL NE it was settled by thousands of British following the conquest of Vinland) to the Carolinas. This gesture heard by the King of Vinland culminated in the Vinns pushing for colonies discontented with British rule to declare independence as well which happened early in 1773. The Front literally Expanded overnight from just Vinland and the western areas and the Great lakes areas, to all up and down the East coast. this prompted several European powers to join in as well, using the Vinns diplomatic victory to secure territory. The British however held on very well and with this were able to capture territory for a very short time.
Bunker hill

Holding the Western Front

Around 1775 the Vins who had held the line for years managed a Victory around the Great lake of Torvald (Lake Ontario) and prevented the British from cutting their remaining territory in half. The Vins managed after this to chase down and completely obliterated the assaulting army and to the surprise of the British went on a large scale Offensive which was coordinated with the American colonists in the South. This huge but surprisingly coordinated offensive scheduled for December of 1775 caught the British off guard who were very low on man power. The December offensive culminated in the outright loss of most Gains by the British in Vinland and American Troops driving the British into the Sea at New York and once again in Charleston.

On Christmas of 1775 the British made the official decision to pull out of the colonies unable to Stomach more heavy losses. The Treaty of London was signed in the following months with many Territorial Concessions to the Vinns, and Americans but left a large kink between the Vins, and the Americans. New York all the way up to the now called Canadian Provincial Border was given to the Colonies while the significant Vinnish population in the Area was left to stay there or pull up and move north.

The Second Kingdom, and American Rivalry

Ship battle

Naval skirmish between Vinland and the US

The Second Kingdom

By 1780 both the new nations were suffering from their own internal problems that compounded with the loss of trade markets for their goods (for the time being) while each nations fledgling economy attempted to climb up a hypothetical mountain in order to be viable. However the United States officially beat Vinland on the path to Stability when in 1789 established the Constitution of the United States which created a decently strong neighbor to the South of Vinland.

This new constitution spurred the Vinns to just about the same thing creating their own Constitution which essentially created the Vinnish constitutional monarchy under the Alstad dynasty which had retaken their throne after the end of their tenor as a British overseas colony/territory.

Until about 1820 the Kingdom was unable to make any serious gains and began losing status and prestige to their southern neighbor which brought out the US-Vinnish Rivalry, which brought huge gains in economy and military strength to both the Kingdom of Vinland and the United States, which by this point threatened to overtake the Vinns completely following their purchase of the Louisiana territory from France. However by the end of the Napoleonic wars in Europe and the British reclamation of supremacy the US turned even farther south and became embroiled in a series of Wars with Spain over territory. The Territories of Texas and New Mexico became battlegrounds as the Expansionist Americans wary of fighting a nation with superior population to them so close to their home territory. The First war starting about 1818 was a very large scale war with far reaching consequences for both nations which allowed Vinland the chance to catch up.

American Rivalry

Around 1820 the Kingdom itself manages to secure itself a large portion of expansion throughout Canada (it was renamed in full by a sentimental British governor in 1701) and nearly reaches the Pacific coast. However by this point the Americans had beaten the Spanish in the 1818-1819 Spanish American war taking most North American possessions of the Spanish on the continent which stretched from Northern Mexico to the Kingdom of Vinland's border. This led to form a larger more encompassing rivalry that once again slacked off towards the end of the Century during the Third Spanish American war but did heat up at several points including various naval skirmishes throughout the years.

However during the intervening years from 1830-1892 the US and Vins established a long standing and bitter rivalry that became the talk of world politics as many believed the two would rip each other apart at a moments notice. By 1860 both nations were at one of the Peaks of their tension until the American Civil war happened in which various Southern States Seceded starting the American Civil war. This became one of the Nations bloodiest conflicts and the US was extended much more than it should have had to in order to prevent Confederate Diplomats from reaching and recruiting Vinland to the Cause of the Confederacy. The Civil war ended around 1865 and by this point Vinland had come to industrially and economically Rival the United States.

Following years of development and a population boom lasting nearly 20 years the Kingdom of Vinland was the Americans direct rival with a population of about 53 million, to the United States 62 million, and with a directly rivaling economy and industry. in 1892 the Vins, and Americans became entangled in a short but extremely Bloody conflict known the Vinnish-American war. The Goal of the Vins was to retake a the large Vinnish cultural area of New York from the U.S. over a period of 6 months the war consumed both nations with a large scale conflict taking place sweeping across the borders of the two nations multiple times and finally Stabilized with an irregular front that stabilized on either side of the Border.

The Naval war also became much more expansive than previously thought as both nations navies waged large scale naval warfare up and down the North American east coast and even caused the destruction of a few British, German, and French ships on accident. By this point however the war had become inconclusive and many of the Ethnic Vinns in New York were offered the choice or returning to Vinland proper. The War ended less than six months after it began but had a staggering three million casualties between either side.

It had proved however, that the Two American nations were a force to be reckoned with and were a direct threat to many of the European powers especially the British empire which was in its height. The War lasted from January of 1892 to August of 1892 and culminated in the August Treaty, In which the Cultural Area of the Great lakes was Ceded to the Vinns and the lightly populated Western Canadian areas were Ceded to the US giving an equal territorial trade off and to prevent rebellion in the various areas specifically the Great Lakes Region which was populated by over two million Vinns.

Tensions considerably lessened after this point as a new King took power just after the war, and the US government looked to soften relations in General to prevent another destructive war on this scale and to bring in economy cooperation between Vinland and the US. Tension however were also on the rise again and the Third Spanish American war started in earnest around 1898 spurred on by the explosion of the USS Maine in Cuba. The Vinns decidedly declared solidarity for the Americans and remained neutral despite the many predictions they would help the Spanish.

About this time the Spanish had suffered numerous defeats and had lost their remaining Caribbean possessions to the Americans, their remaining and small territory in Central America adjacent to the Mexica empire and the Philippines to once again the United States. The Vinns themselves presided over the peace negotiations which ceded the remaining territory in the North American continent to the US and its ally in the Conflict the Mexica.

Vinnish Manifest Destiny, and the Russia Vinnish war

The Manifest

The Vinns by this point had developed a policy of Manifest Destiny the same as their lower neighbor and were embarking on major western settlement policies. Shortly after adopting the unofficial policy cities were established as incorporated cities and the territory was rapidly claimed until it met up with Russian Alaska which due to the success of other colonies the Russians had settled and developed the Gold Deposits in the area. While initially uncaring, the amount of gold flooding out from the Russian Alaskan colonies, began to care much more wishing to expel the "Intrusive" Russians from the continent. Just Shortly after the end of the final Spanish-American war, the Vins began using their mellowing tensions with the Americans to develop the military industries of Western Vinland and deployed nearly 400,000 troops to the Western settlements and frontiers.

Russo-Vinnish war

The impact of the development was near immediate as a notable jump in population from developed roads and the increasing industries of oil in the area heavily industrialized areas which were previously un-industrialized and allowed for a population boom as well as an increase in the amount of buildings and the size of cities in the area. The success of Vinnish Manifest Destiny finally Relied almost entirely on the acquisition of Alaska. Initially the government offered to buy it but multiple offers of increasing price ended in a Russian Rejection every time. Finally in 1904 the Vinns took advantage of the new Russo-Japanese War and made their play for Alaska in an independent conflict from Japan. 


Vinnish forces at war in Alaska

The Russians who had nearly evacuated its eastern holdings to fight the Japanese were caught completely off guard.

The War went extremely well for the Vinns initially as an invasion force of nearly 200,000 made a huge play seizing the New Russia and taking the surrounding area less than a month following the initial attack. By the time the Aleutian islands were secure and enough naval forces were brought in to hold the area the Russians began staging counterattacks with their navy across the Bearing sea. A Foolish Vinnish General named John Caverall ignoring orders staged an invasion with the 50,000 troops under his command against the Russian far east territories attempting to land and move down towards Vladivostok. His landing in eastern Russia failed less than two weeks later from sporadic attacks, the loss of reliable supplies and finally their outright destruction outside of Vladivostok during the botched Siege of Vladivostok.

After this the Russians emboldened by their success continued to wage war however their conflict with the Japanese during this time Turned the tides once again towards the Vinns who were steadily losing ground to a Russian army which had launched a campaign to retake Alaska. The Subsequent battles went very badly and the Vinns spirit looked close to breaking. However the Japanese taking Port Arthur and advancing through the Far east brought Russian advances to a halt as the Vinns began their own counterattack which decisively crushed the Russians and forced them back across the Sea. This loss coupled with the loss to the Japanese not much later forced the Treaty of Alaska in which Russian America was ceded to the Kingdom of Vinland in exchange for continued allowance of Russian immigration to and From the area. While ready to reject this the Vins realized that denying could prolong a costly war and agreed signing the treaty.

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