A history of loving money: Our family crest

One of my cousins has been doing a bunch of genealogy work with the help of our relatives still in Europe.  Turns out my family has a crest!  This is from the 17th century when an ancestor was the local official overseeing a town building and decided to leave his mark:

The circles in the lower right are coins, which is not surprising given how important money is to this side of my family (we are all terribly crass about it!).  The cross-like things on the upper-right are supposedly lilies, and I guess they technically are similar to fleur de lis.  This is the side of the family that has won and lost fortunes in Europe (and various non-American colonies, where it is likely they did horrific things in the name of trade), as opposed to the stunningly middle-class American side (it’s unlikely that that side had fortunes prior to leaving for the new world either, though side branches that I’m not descended from have done well for themselves– I am very distant cousins with some rich old US families).  My mother’s family does not have family crests (indeed, my mom’s last name is one of those that got created upon an ancestor coming to the US).  My DH’s last name does, but only in the way that really common UK names that are also places do.  If you go back 4 generations down my maternal line (possibly not coincidentally, the line related to those rich distant cousins), we’ve got one of those as well according to places on the internet that sell such things.

Do you have a family crest?  What’s on it?  What would you put on a family crest?  I’d like to swap out that woodland creature for a book…

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4 Responses to “A history of loving money: Our family crest”

  1. Steph Says:

    My last name is that of a recognized Scottish clan, and though we played an important role in history, we aren’t one of the ones with a popular tartan :( However, during the most famous part of the family history, the crest was a star pattern. I found that out last year, and it felt very much like fate given my current area of study :)

  2. Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life Says:

    Crests aren’t a thing for our people. We came from poor families in the countryside on both sides so we have instead oral histories remembering how paternal great grandpa took his kids into the jungle and cleared some land to make his livelihood and we have no idea about the family history on the maternal line going back beyond the grandparent level.

  3. nicoleandmaggie Says:


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