Hi Terry,
let me go in order :

/"Tried creation_date: 2016-11.  That's supposed to match 
documents with any November 2016 date.  But actually produces:  
|"Invalid Date String:'2016-11'| "/

Is "*DateRangeField*" the field type for your field : "creation_date" ? [1]
You mentioned : org.apache.solr.schema.TrieDateField, this is not going to
work, you need the specific field type I mentioned to use that date range

/"||And Solr doesn't seem to let me sort on a date field.  Tried 
creation_date asc  Produced: |"can not sort on multivalued field: 
creation_date"| "/

Is your "creation_date" single valued ?
If it is single valued semantically, make sure it is defined as single
valued in the schema.
Solr doesn't support sorting on multi valued fields.
You schemaless conf may have assigned the multi valued attribute to that

>From the Wiki[2] :
"Solr can sort query responses according to document scores or the value of
any field with a single value that is either indexed or uses DocValues (that
is, any field whose attributes in the Schema include multiValued="false" and
either docValues="true" or indexed="true" – if the field does not have
DocValues enabled, the indexed terms are used to build them on the fly at
runtime), provided that:"

Hope this helps,



Alessandro Benedetti
Search Consultant, R&D Software Engineer, Director
Sease Ltd. - www.sease.io
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