Karnsburg in its current state
Lady Fleur DeWitt
Southern Gilneas, Ashen Coast
Karnsburg is a small Gilnean town in the Ashen Coast of Gilneas. The town is built on the shore with two small plateaus along it against a cliff face, and supports a small wall with guard towers. The town has had a history of shipbuilding and fishing due to its location. The town is currently ruled by Lord Berenal Grayblade of the House of Grayblade and was destroyed when the orcs invaded the Ashen Coast. Under orders of Lord Grayblade, the House of Gregor and the House of Greyfield have rebuilt the town and it now supplies the Blades with ships for travel. The town acts as the seat of the Barony of Shorfall and is currently under the House of DeWitt by way of Fleur DeWitt.
During Strom's colonization of the peninsula known as Gilneas, two families by the names of Cobal and Stanton had established themselves and their followers in the northern most regions of the Ashen Coast, the Cobals establishing Cobal's Hold and the Stantons establishing Karnsburg. Rivalry for land and power in the area caused a war to break out amongst the two families that waged on for years. After the near destruction of both family's holds, a fragile truce was made by the marriage of a Cobal son and a Stanton daughter. With Cobal's Hold and Karnsburg left in a poor state, the two united families combined what remained of their people and wealth and established a town within the Blood Fields, which gained its name from being the main site of battle between the two families.
The town of Bannhurst was established on the Blood Fields and experienced a very lucky start. Shortly after colonization of the area, a large gold mine filled with rich precious minerals was discovered. The discovery of the mine revived the coffers of both families and caused Bannhurst to prosper. The discovery of the mine and the rich natural resources of the Ashen Coast also attracted a large amount of attention, drawing in many families to settle in the Ashen Coast as well, establishing towns such as Brandon's Stead and Rosefield.
While Bannhurst prospered, the Stantons turned their attention to rebuilding Karnsburg. With most of the outer fields that the town once supported torched in the war, the town took on a new approach, instead focusing on shipbuilding, maritime trade and fishing. The town, unlike Cobal's Hold, was rebuild in its entirety rather quickly, as the Stantons had no intention of keeping the truce forever.
When war threatened to kick back up, the Stantons were prepared to invade the crippled Cobal's Hold and take over full control of Bannhurst. When Gilneas succeeded from Arathor and formed the Kingdom of Gilneas, the Cobals and Stanton families merged into House Cobalstant, putting those fears aside. For quite sometime, there was a division within the Stanton side of the family, as most believed they could have over powered the Cobals and ensured dominance of the Bite on their own.
War in the Ashen CoastEdit
Following the establishment of the Kingdom of Gilneas, the area of the Ashen Coast experienced a mix of religions. Cobal's Hold and Karnsburg were strong worshipers of the Holy Light, while such towns as Rosefield and Gregor's Crossing, were strong supporters of the Old Ways and refused to pick up the practices of the Light. To add further religious confusion, worship of the god Deus was adopted in Brandon's Stead and Keel Harbor. Religious tension broke out within the area, especially in the neighboring town of Bannhurst who, despite being under the House of Cobalstant, had the biggest mix of these followings. As the strongest family in the area, the Cobalstants believed that Bannhurst should be kept to Light worship, seeking to oust Old Ways worship and especially worship of the god Deus.
Chapels to the Light were established in the areas of Cobal's Hold and Karnsburg, and a small cathedral was to be built in Bannhurst. After assassinations and stealthy attacks on the Deus worshiping towns of the Ashen Coast by the Cobalstants, war broke out in the area.
Fearing for their people, the towns of Rosefield and Gregor's Crossing banded together in an alliance of their own named the Rose Pact, laying siege to Bannhurst in order to displace both the Cobalstants and the Ashen Coast Coalition. The three way war in the town led to a severe decline of Bannhurst's prosperity, with the Cathedral's construction site destroyed and the great gold mine of Bannhurst being left unmanned. Unable to reap the benefits of the Ashen Coast, the armies of Greymane marched into the region, occupying the wreckage of Bannhurst and effectively ending the war. By the end of the strife, Keel Harbor and Brandon's Stead were left in ruins.
The Cobalstants funded the rebuilding of these two towns, establishing chapels of the Light, while Gregor's Crossing and Rosefield were permitted to continue their practices of the Old ways, and worship of the light was adopted in the area as well. Ultimately, Deus worship was effectively destroyed in the area as most practitioners were either slain or were converted to the ways of the light.
Karnsburg, unlike Cobal's Hold, faced a minor invasion of Ashen Coast Coalition men, in a desperate attempt to ransack the town and steal the supplies of the Cobalstants. The attack failed due to the town's defenses and standing militia within the town having been well trained to face the mostly untrained men of the Ashen Coast Coalition.
For years after the destruction of Brandon's Stead and its rebuilding, the lords of the town, House Greyfield, plotted against the Cobalstants. With the Ashen Coast Coalition's failure echoing in their history for hundreds of years and the family having been degraded down to the lowest rung of the noble chain, the Greyfields hired Alteraci assassins to destroy House Cobalstant. For the most part, it was successful, being a large house and its members spread wide, Cobalstants began turning up dead for months following the contract given. Fearing for their lives, most of the Cobalstants attempted to flee to Bannhurst to Cobalstant Manor, where Lord Hendrick Cobalstant ruled over the town.
Unable to house the influx of his relatives, Hendrick sent them away from Bannhurst, giving them refuge on small holds and minor farms, the majority of them setting up in Cobal's Hold and Karnsburg, which maintained a keep and manse respectively. The Cobalstants that hid in Karnsburg were found quickly, as the mercenaries had been hiding within the town disguised as traders. While in Cobal's Hold, the Cobalstants there were slaughtered aside from Jackson Cobalstant, who had convinced the mercenaries to drop their Greyfield banners and work for him.
Infuriated with his kin for having turned his family away and in his eyes leading to their deaths, Jackson led his band into Bannhurst under the guise of marauding bandits of unknown origin. After sacking half of the town, Jackson and Hendrick faced off in single combat, where Marsh was beheaded and House Greyfield was made nearly defunct with the murder of Elisa. Jackson's son, Kendrick Greyfield (given his mother's surname to hide Harrison's true origins), was adopted by the Cobalstants and later groomed to be their puppet as the effectively gained control over yet another town in the Ashen Coast.
During this time, a large amount of Cobalstant Hearthstones were destroyed, and the secrets of how to make them were lost to time, becoming an extremely rare object and the sign of a true Cobalstant.
Demise of House CobalstantEdit
By the time the Second War began, the Cobalstants had all but left their towns to rot. Karnsburg continued prosperity during this time, though it suffered from over population after a large amount of people left the decaying Cobal's Hold. When Cobalstant Manor was raided and the Cobalstant family made defunct, Cobal's Hold, Bannhurst and Karnsburg found themselves under House Grayblade.
Lord Haverin Grayblade revitalized the Bite and fixed Cobal's Hold, the population issues of Karnsburg were finally fixed. The fields outside of Karnsburg were used for farming as the town became the agrarian center of the Bite, exporting and importing large amounts of food to circulate around the area of the Ashen Coast.
Arrival of the Seventh SkullEdit
Following the end of the Second War and the closing off of Gilneas from the rest of Azeroth, a group of Lordaeronian deserters turned bandits became trapped behind the wall. Originally just harassing small towns such as Emberstone Village, the Seventh Skull sought to grip Gilneas' economy under its fist. Laying siege to several towns across the Ashen Coast, such as Rosefield, the Seventh Skull gripped the southern Ashen Coast economy. After assassinating the Grayblade family and laying siege to the town of Bannhurst, the people of Karnsburg became extremely shut off from the rest of the Ashen Coast after their new lords feared the rest of the Ashen Coast.
In the aftermath of the attack, Bannhurst was left completely ruined and the Ashen Coast in disarray. Cobal's Hold was given to House Darkoak of Rosefield, and Karnsburg to House Cloverfield. House Cloverfield was a relatively obscure house with a small holding in the Northern Ashen Coast, similar to that of the Grayblade's origins. However, the leaders of the House mismanaged the town, driving its wealth to the ground and were later found dead under mysterious circumstances shortly after coming into power in Karnsburg. With the Cloverfields dead, House Darkoak took over control of the area and began to rebuild its economy.
In the years that followed, House Gregor of Gregor's Crossing and House Greyfield of Brandon's Stead to become extremely wary of the Darkoaks, following the sudden destruction of House Cloverfield and House Grayblade. With Bannhurst in ruins, Cobal's Hold became the new center of power of the Darkoaks, the Keep once again being turned into the living area of the reigning family.
Death of the Darkoaks and the WorgenEdit
While on a visit to Gilneas City to visit his son and sole heir, Galin Darkoak, Lord Balaforth Darkoak was slain, alongside his son, by Berenal Grayblade, the heir to Bannhurst and true heir to Cobal's Hold and Karnsburg. The man was arrested, though was later released on the grounds that he was framed. With no other heirs to the land, Cobal's Hold, Karnsburg, and the Ruins of Bannhurst once again found themselves under the name of House Grayblade, though it was short lived.
While the young Lord Berenal Grayblade sought out a military life and left minor lords to run the towns in his stead, the Worgen curse swept across Gilneas in the years to come. While the Ashen Coast were mostly unaffected, Bannhurst became the site of hunting parties, seeking out the wolfmen in the ruins. After a large pack of Worgen were found in the ruins, and Gilneas City had been lost, the people of the Ashen Coast destroyed the bridge connecting the Ashen Coast to the rest of Gilneas.
Karnsburg remained relatively unaffected by this, as the town's economy had recovered since the Cloverfield's demise. Thanks to the swearing of House Greyfield to House Grayblade, House Greyfield managed the day to day affairs of the town in Lord Berenal Grayblade's stead.
Arrival of the HordeEdit
The final blow to the Ashen Coast was struck by the hands of the Orcish Horde that had arrived near the end of the first invason of Gilneas. During this time, Rosefield, Cobal's Hold, Karnsburg, and Brandon's Stead were destroyed by the Horde. Karnsburg fell relatively quickly, unable to hold out against the oncoming Horde. The town was torched and the ships being made for the evacuation destroyed. Erik Greyfield was executed during the defense in the town square.
By the end of the siege, the Greyfield family was neary wiped out, having been butchered when the orcs invaded and the various towns were ransacked. Thanks to the timely intervention of Lord Xavier Gregor and his sons, Lady Greyfield was saved just before the orcs could kill her. The people of House Gregor and House Greyfield followed Lord Berenal Grayblade and lent their men to the banner of The Blades of Greymane.
Karnsburg has undergone rebuilding efforts under House of Gregor and the House of Greyfield by order of Lord Berenal Grayblade. The town shares the architectural building style of Gregor's Crossing now, having adopted the northrend-esque building style of the Alliance, with a bit of Gilnean flare to it.
The town has begun reproduction of ships and has once again started to bring in fish for the Ashen Coast. The town is nearing full reconstruction, with the buildings, watch towers, and most of the wall having been restored.
Being the center of the Stanton family's power, the area, like the neighboring Cobal's Hold, maintains a distinct culture. Karnsburg has suffered very little during its time, from founding to the present, the town its self has only been destroyed once. Most of the civilians of Karnsburg were able to flee by way of the sea and make their way to Keel Harbor before signing up to the Blades, and as such has maintained a large amount of their community.
The people of Karnsburg are devout light worshipers, with very little Old Ways influence and no Deus worship in the town's history. They are also able seafarers, making up most of the Blades' sea captains. They are a hearty loyal lot but have been known to not be able to take devastation well, as most of the citizens of Karnsburg suffered post traumatic stress disorders following the destruction of their town.
The people of Karnsburg are known to breed red haired, freckled, tall and lanky individuals, due to the lack of heavy manual labor in the area.