The Flag of the Sovereign State of Alud
Alud was established as a Highland barony in the 11th century by the descendants of Norse immigrants. The loosely defined territory occupied the lower peaks and foothills of the Borodea Mountains as they descended towards the rugged Eastern coast of the Excalbian Isles. The Highlanders, as was common across the Isles, dominated the Celtic Lowlanders along the coast.
In the 12th century, Irish missionaries brought Christianity to the Celtic villages along the coast. The Christian villages, which would establish the Grand Duchy of Saxmere in the 17th century, began to challenge Highland dominance. During the same period, the more powerful Highland baronies to the West began to grow into kingdoms, which soon began working to bring Alud under their influence. With the establishment of the Highland Kingdom of Excalbia under King Alsgood, the Great in the 16th century, Alud found itself often under attack from the Christian East and the Highland West.
After the conversion of the Highland king's son to Christianity and the establishment of the Holy Empire of Excalbia in the early 19th century, Alud found itself under even greater pressure to submit to Excalbian authority. Partially in response to this pressure, the barons of Alud led most of their people in converting to Christianity in 1812.
In 1817, however, a mixed group of American settlers and Lowlanders began demanding a republican government. In order to avoid violence, Emperor Joshua I extended a land grant to the republicans east of the Borodea Mountains and a patent to establish an autonomous republican government. The republicans accepted the grant and established the Autonomous State of New Virginia.
By 1828, a second settlement, known as Southland and dominated by extremely devout Christians, had been established. Another settlement, known as Deandra, had been founded by a group of Freedmen on an island south of Excalbia.
Despite lingering racial prejudices, Alud, New Virginia, Southland and Deandra, along with Saxmere and the Highland settlement of Trondgard, declared themselves independent states and immediately formed a Confederation of Soveriegn States in 1829. The C.S.S. adopted a Constitution based on a modified version of the U.S. Constitution that created a weak central government with strong guarantees for personal liberty.
In the first few decades after its founding, the Confederation operated more as a coalition of nations than as a single country. This led to great disparities between the sovereign States of the C.S.S. and rising civil tensions. The State of New Virginia quickly emerged as the most prosperous and most advanced of the States. This fueled a number of disputes between New Virginia and its neighbors.
In 1856, Peter Courtland, commander of the New Virginia State Militia, was encouraged by many civic and business leaders to force the Governor's resignation and take charge of the State government. When Courtland and his troops surrounded the Governor's Mansion in Jefferson, the President of the Confederation called for the other States to send their militia's to put down the revolt. The other States were more than happy to respond to the President's request.
The turmoil that had inspired Courtland's failed coup attempt eventually prompted a second Constitutional Conference in 1865. While the Confederation's Constitution remained relatively unchanged, a new understanding of the respective roles of the Confederation and State government emerged from the conference, putting an end to many of the interstate disputes.
In the 20th century, Alud has developed into a quiet, prosperous but somewhat provincial State. Early in the 21st century, Alud, which came late and reluctantly to Christianity, has become home to a number of new religions, including the materialistic teachings of the Order of the Invisible Hand.