The Society for
Creative Anchronism ( SCA) - Some Background
History & Overview
The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) is a 501c3 non profit educational
organization devoted to the study of Western culture between 650 and 1600 CE.
The major focus of the organization is the European Middle Ages and Renaissance.
Members also have branched into the Middle East and Asia and actively explore
the interaction between Europe and these areas during the period under study.
While official incorporation took place in 1968 a backyard barbecue and
tournament held in Berkley, CA, on May 1, 1966, is considered to be the founding
date. The SCA attempts to take the best qualities of the Middle Ages and
selectively recreates them in the modern world. Members are encouraged to
develop persona’s based on this principal and actively pursue the arts and
sciences of that time frame. Over the years a thriving mercantile community has
grown to provide supplies and expertise in various area’s to the members.
Members & Organization
There are approximately 25,000 dues paying members worldwide. While as an
organization we cover the globe most of the "populous" is centered in
the United States and Canada. We have active branches in Australia, New Zealand,
Japan, and most recently, have started to organize inside the former Soviet
The "Known World," as members refer to the organization, is divided
into 16 geographical areas referred to as Kingdoms. Each kingdom has a king and
queen chosen on the field of combat. (See below) While the kingdoms are
independent of each other their by-laws are based on the corporate charter and
by-laws. This has allowed for a great diversity from region to region. The
kingdoms are divided into local and regional chapters call principalities,
baronies, shires, cantons, and colleges. The names of these divisions reflect
the size of the membership and/or the larger division through whom the local
There is a wide range of activities available to the members. On the social
side all groups are required, depending on their size, to hold a certain number
of "events." These events will feature tournaments, classes, medieval
dance, theater, music, and classes. A major feature of these event is the feast.
Some of our chefs are first rate and their food will rival anything available in
a first class restaurant.
An additional corporate requirement is the need to hold a certain number of
public demonstrations, referred to as "demos." These demos are always
open to the public and feature demonstrations of various Middle Age arts and
sciences. Quite often they are held in conjunction with libraries, Boy Scout
troops, or schools. The Philadelphia chapter recently staged a two day
demonstration in conjunction the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s reopening of its
Medieval armor collection.
Local groups also maintain a program of classes in the arts and sciences to
encourage their members skill development. Depending on the geographic area and
member interest we actively study such areas as: