A special note from Tookish~
In a hole in the wall, there lived a website…
Waaaayyy back in time in the late 20th Century, four creatives lurked about the wild frontier of the internet, pursuing their disparate interests, unknowingly united by a common passion. The internet was undiscovered country in that time, fertile ground for those with the right ingredients to plow, till and toil. This passion – a love of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien – brought together in an unlikely alliance a visionary, a musician, a server lord and a coder from three nations and two continents who would make history and launch the greatest gathering, collection and expression of Tolkien fandom as yet seen on this Earth.
Mike, Chris, Bill and Erica – Xoannon, Calisuri, Corvar and Tehanu – had little inkling of the crop they would harvest within the matter of even one year. As these creatives teamed together on a simple chatroom platform called mIRC to build and grow the site, others joined the scene to talk Tolkien: the books, the art, the music, the maps, the worlds and ages and fables and histories and tales of Middle Earth… and yes, THE MOVIES! We were so in love with the concept that AT LAST, technology had evolved enough and the right creative brains and funding was behind what it was going to take to make a decent- maybe even GREAT – Lord of the Rings film. One? Two? Three? Who knew? What we did know was that it was going to be amazing, that we were going to keep a very close eye on things, that we represented and gave voice to a fandom that took Tolkien’s work seriously, and that we wanted to make sure that Mr. Jackson, 3 Foot 6, WETA and New Line Studios created something that would honor the memory and great works of Professor Tolkien. We wanted to be a place where fans could be updated about the films and go much deeper, joining in fellowship with like-minded thinkers who felt a deep love for the work of J.R.R. Tolkien.
Something special grew then, beyond the nooks and crannies of the website that were growing in leaps and bounds.
There, in this unlikely place that didn’t actually exist beyond ONE rickety server in a clandestine location near the East Coast – a place Tolkien himself would not have dreamed of – a following of friends grew, whose love of his works translated seamlessly into a love of TheOneRing.net. The Founders wisely harnessed this energy and marshalled the expertise of generations of Tolkien fans who were able (thanks to the new access provided by the world wide web) to create a community which continues to thrive today.
Endless hours have gone into the building and maintenance of TheOneRing.net website and community by a small army of volunteers. We are so very grateful for the contributions that each and every one of you have made to our existence and success over the years. You have been a part of something important, something valuable, that has enriched the lives of so very many, and our gratitude for you is deep and wide. For the many of you who have slogged away behind the screens coding/writing/editing/publishing, engaged with bigwigs in the Real World, worked yourself to exhaustion repping for us at conventions or throwing Hollywood parties, hosted moots, picnics, and hundreds of local events (including those Line Parties!), flew half way around the world to (yes!) adventure but also connect and represent, moderated Barliman’s and her many neighbors, managed the message boards, submitted original works of art/writing/music/film/etc., and given any of your time, talent and treasure to TORn, we say THANK YOU!
We are also deeply grateful for the vision of Peter Jackson, whose decision to make TORn a friend instead of foe eased our efforts and established the framework for a partnership which remains true today. To our buddies at WETA – we love you! Thank you Richard Taylor and Tania Rodgers! Our thanks to Sideshow and Badali Jewelry, creative partners we’ve cherished along the way. We’re so very grateful to the writers, producers, cast and crew of the LOTR and Hobbit films for your work and also your friendships over the years. For those in the industry (that includes you Peter) who supported us (and strategically) came alongside, our gratitude goes out to you as well. Thank you for joining us to celebrate Professor Tolkien’s creative genius!
TheOneRing.net exists as a community today because we are bonded through the same passion that brought her founders and early laborers together twenty years ago. Thank you, Professor Tolkien, for creating a story, an idea and an ideal that has inspired and enriched our lives. We are grateful to you, your publishers, the Tolkien Estate and members of your family who have celebrated with us in person and in spirit.
Finally, our deepest gratitude goes out to YOU, dear reader. For 20 years, you’ve faithfully visited our front page for news, dialogued on our message boards, lived in our chatrooms, and provided us rich, meaty content to post. For 20 years you’ve attended our events, donated funds to maintain the site, and purchased a dragon’s hoard of TORn merch. For 20 years, you’ve created and maintained a community that was beyond anything imagined in its early days. We appreciate you! May your mug and pipe always be full!
With deep gratitude and appreciation on behalf of The Founders and Staff of TheOneRing.net,
*Tookish bows low*
TheOneRing.net: Forged By and For Fans of JRR Tolkien