The Shenandoah Knights
Devastator Marine of the 4th Company<br />
Still working on the rewrite for this section
The force that become known as the Shenandoah Knights chapter started out as one of the many Chapter Keeps of the Black Templars but due to a warp storm that erupted around the Victoris system in the latter half of the 41st millennium, this meant that they were cut off from the Imperium for nearly three centuries. When the storm hit, the Battle Barge 'Shenandoah' was in the system to collect a contingent of neophytes as the crusade it was part of had suffered heavy losses and was in dire need of an influx of new recruits to bolster it's numbers.
What emerged after the storm finally abated was a force that had grown in size to nearly 500 Space Marines and had developed it's own identity during the isolation. Marshall Waddell who had been leading the crusade now had a dilemma on his hands - did they re-join the Black Templars or did they go it alone.
He called a council of the ship's senior members to discuss the dilemma now facing them. The council went on for many hours and there was much discussion some of it quite heated at times, for there were those who believed they should return to the fold while there were others who believed that they should go it alone. Throughout the long hours of discussion, Waddell sat quietly, listening to the views put forward by the council members.
It wasn't until the discussions died down that Waddell finally stood to announce his decision, which was that they would remain autonomous from the Black Templars.
And thus the Shenandoah Knights were born.
The Shenandoah Knights claim the Victoris system in Segmentum Pacificus as their home and maintain chapter keeps, all of which bear the title of Knight's Keep, on the two inhabited planets in the system, these are Port Philip and Amazonia. Prior to the Shenandoah Knights claiming the system it had a proud military history and had provided many regiment for the Imperial Guard, some of which are still in active service.
Port Philip is a civilised world that borders on being a hive world (think something like Mega city 1 from Judge Dredd). The planet's surface is dotted with large cities that cover hundreds of kilometres. The planet has no central governing body instead each of the great cities governs itself and there is a constant struggle for resources between the cities and this has at times ignited into open warfare.
Amazonia is a Feral World, it is unclear of how this came about as many of the earlier Imperial records have it as being similar to it's neighbour Port Philip. However the planet's oral legends do include stories of great ball of fire that all but destroyed life on the planet and is called The Great Death. There are those Imperial historians who believe this is a reference to a meteor strike . The planet's inhabitants have been reduced to the level of nomadic hunters that now follow the great herds through the ruins of the old world which is what they call the time before The Great Death. There have been attempts the other planets in the system to bring the populace beyond this level but they are strongly resistant to this and the only technology they taken to with any type of acceptance is that of weaponry as this makes hunting easier. The planet has only eight permanent structures on the entire surface; these the seven Basilicas of Eternal Light which are the only outward representations of the Imperial church and Knight's Keep
The Shenandoah Knights maintain many of the traditions of their parent chapter, one of which is that the chapter is still fleet based even though they claim a system as their own, if not a single world. Another is that the Grand Master of the chapter bears the title of Marshall; it is believed that this a show of respect to the position of High Marshall in the Black Templars and that there can one be one High Marshall. This belief has been reinforced at times when the two chapter have worked together, as they have always acceded battlefield command to the Black Templars
They follow many of the tenets set down in the Codex Astartes but break from it in a number of ways, the most obvious is in how they organise their companies. Rather than having four battle, four reserve, a veteran and scout company, the chapter instead has six battle companies and three veteran companies, these are broken up amongst the chapter's three squadron, which is what they call their fleets and each is named after the battle barge that is it's flagship. Each fleet is led by a Castellan who leads the fleet's veteran company and two company masters. The only fleet not led by a Castellan is the first which is led by the chapter' Marshall. It seems that the rank of Castellan is merely to show that they are of subordinate rank to the chapter's Marshall for they hold many of the same powers that he does, with the exception that they cannot call the chapter together to fight a crusade.
Another is that the chapter has no suits of Tactical Dreadnought Armour or Terminator armour to give it the more common name. The chapter's records show that the force that formed the nucleus of the Shenandoah Knights didn't posses any and the chapter was formed with them. But what was done out of necessity has now become Tradition.
Due to being a fleet based chapter that seldom comes together in one place, each crusade has developed it's own idiosyncrasies but the one thing that is prevalent in all reports on the chapter is that they prefer ranged assault with a predilection towards massed bolter fire.
The ways that the Knights recruit on each planet varies
On Port Philip there are a set of games that are held every seven at Knight's Keep and each of the planet's city states enters a company of boys from academies. It is seen as a great honour to be chosen as a member of one these companies and an even bigger one to be accepted as a Knight. The games cover many aspect of combat but it is not always the winner who is chosen though but those who show the most promise to the Knight's Chaplains.
Whereas on Amazonia it is seen as more of a call and part of the challenge to being accepted is to survive the journey to Knight's Keep which is located in the planet's northern polar regions. Many of those aspire to becoming a member of the knights do not survive the journey
The people of Port Philip and Amazonia are strong believers of the Imperial Creed and as such they venerate the Emperor as the God of Man, this belief has also meant that they have a strong and close relationship the ecclesiarchy. But as you can imagine this belief has caused them to have a somewhat strained relationship with other Astartes chapters who do not share their beliefs.
The gene-seed of the Shenandoah Knights is that of the Imperial Fists and they share many of the same traits of that chapter. However there are rumours that the chapter is actually a successor of the Black Templars. The Shenandoah Knights have neither confirmed nor denied these rumours, but they are given some credence due to the fact that the chapter shares similar views on many thing as the Black Templars
Still working on this part
Notable Member of the Shenandoah Knights
Marshall Waddell - Marshall Waddell is the chapter's current Grand Master, He is the second to hold the office in the chapter short history.
Marshall Bulloch - Marshall Bulloch was the Shenandoah Knight's first Grand Master and was killed in a warp accident upon the Battle Barge Sea King, which was the chapters flagship.
Edited by GuardsmanLowe, 08 March 2014 - 04:20 AM.