The Silmarillion - J.R.R. Tolkien, Ted Nasmith,  Christopher Tolkien

We change gears for a bit, looking at the Sindar, those that started the "Great Journey," but who stayed in Beleriand instead of crossing the ocean.  After all, there's more than just Valinor.

I have to assume if you're reading The Silmarillion  you're at least vaguely familiar with The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.  But if you aren't, I hope that the fact that Tolkien makes specific mention of the birth of Lúthien stands out.  Spoiler, she's kind of a big deal, and not just because she's the daughter of the Maiar Melian and the Elven King Thingol.

The focus here is of the meeting of the Dwarves and the Elves, and what came of that meeting.  The
Elves experienced a bit of a shock on learning they were not the only creatures who spoke and crafted (Valar and Maiar excluded, of course).  The dirty secret being, of course, that the Dwarves predate the Elves, and were just in forced hibernation for awhile.  The Dwarves keep their secrets though, and learn the Elven tongue instead of sharing their own, and a cool friendship between the races grows.

However, having a Maiar to help guide your your King and entire Kingdom proves surprisingly beneficial.  I originally didn't include surprisingly... but then thought about the mess of things the Valar have been making, and decided that this did all work out surprisingly well.  She had the foresight to advise the building of a kingly stronghold against yet unrealized evil waking in Middle Earth, and to seek the skills of the Dwarves in the building.  From this the Dwarves learned knowledge and skills from Melian and gained great pearls from Thingol, and considered themselves well paid indeed.  From this a city is wrought from the labor of Elves and Dwarves alike, each bringing their skills together for a single purpose and so created Menegroth.

Time moves on, and during the Third Age of Melkor's captivity the Dwarves bring news to King Thingol that evil still lurks in the dark northern reaches, multiplying and roaming forth.  Kudos to Thingol for listening, had he not things would have turned out much darker.  So they were able to drive off the creatures of evil, and with a stocked armory against future trouble, and Menegroth became a place gathering of the scattered hosts of people.

The Sindar and the Dwarves knew nothing of the destruction of the trees, but when Melkor cried out in his contest with Ungoliant, they heard and were afraid.  Ungoliant comes north into their realm, but Melian provides protection.  But meanwhile Melkor rebuilds his stronghold, and Menegroth comes under attack from different directions, and only at a high cost do the Elves prevail at all.  The Elves of Ossiriand lose their King, taking no king after him, and many pulling away in wariness and secrecy, becoming the Laiquendi, the Green elves, while others merged with Thingol's people.  The shipwrights are driven to the rim of the sea itself.  And so Thingol draws all his people within, and Melian spins forth a wall of shadow and bewilderment to protect them.

But Fëanor is coming, changing the shape of Middle Earth with his own host.