The Southern Hold was never declared an independent nation on paper. However, a clear message was sent from the Northern Alliance to the people of the Southern Hold when the Great Barrier was built. The Northern Alliance, in an effort to keep people they saw as "unrefined" and "uncivilized", built a giant wall to keep the men and women of the South out of the North.
The Southern Hold is a collection of small tribes and merchant cities. The Southern Hold is unofficially governed by the Southern Defense Council, based out of Haven. Moerth, located near the governing city of Haven, is the home base for the Southern Defense Militia, led by human Commander Tyler Grove.
The Government of the Southern Hold is loose. The tribes of the South tend to do whatever they want. However, the largest military force in the Southern Hold is controlled by the Southern Defense Council. Thus, unless the tribes of the south were to unite, the Southern Defense Council is able to bend others to their will through use of military force.
The Southern Hold does not have a static system of nobility. Instead, one measure of a person's power is how much land they own. While the economy of the North is still effective in the South, land and slave trading is much more common than actual monetary transaction.
Currently, there are seven sitting members on the Southern Defense Council: Darion Silver, Cyrus Black, Morgan Tyrel, Norman Fontaine, Silus Storm, Ghor U'thablek, and J'kor Si'ven. Each of them are equal in power because all government decisions are made in accordance with a majority vote on the council.