Thursday, December 29, 2016

Parents Remembering Their Children

The next stained glass memorial in Glasgow Cathedral we're going to look at is a particularly touching one, as it is a memorial by a married couple to three of their deceased children.

The window bears the following legend, which tells you just about everything you need to know:

This window replaces an earlier window
by James and Catherine Hozier, in
memory of their children, Catherine
Haughton, John Wallace, and James
Edmund, 1857, and incorporates the
coat of arms from that window.

The coat of arms is this one:

The blazon of this marshalled coat of arms is: Vair on a chevron gules three bezants, a chief gyronny of eight or and sable [the window makes the chief gyronny sable and or, thus reversing the tinctures] (Hozier), impaling Argent on a fess cotised azure three lozenges argent  (Feilden). The crest is A bloodhound sejant proper, and the motto is Aye ready.

According to An Ordinary of Arms by Sir James Balfour Paul, the Hozier arms were granted in 1824 to "James Hozier, advocate." The listing for Feilden (which is English, not Scottish) in Burke's Peerage and Baronetage indicates that there should be two martlets and a rose, all gules, on the shield, and that the lozenges on the fess should be or rather than argent.

James Hozier was born on 14 November 1791 in Glasgow. He was the son of William Hozier and Jean Campbell. He married Catherine Margaret Feilden on 11 May 1824. He died on 12 January 1878 at age 86.

Catherine Margaret Feilden, was born on 10 March 1803, in Blackburn, Lancashire, the daughter of Sir William Feilden, 1st Baronet, and Mary Haughton Jackson. She died 27 April 1870.

The children of James and Catherine Margaret (Feilden) Hozier were:

   William Wallace Hozier, 1st Baron Newlands, b. 24 Feb 1825, d. 30 Jan 1906
   Catherine Haughton Hozier, b. 1826, d. 1831
   Jean Campbell Hozier, b. 23 Aug 1828, d. 20 Mar 1909
   John Wallace Hozier, b. 1830, d. 1833
   John Wallace Hozier, b. 14 Feb 1834, d. 30 Sep 1905
   Colonel Sir Henry Montague Hozier, b. 20 Mar 1838, d. 28 Feb 1907
   Mary Haughton Georgiana Hozier, b. 29 Jul 1840, d. 3 Feb 1933

I did not find a records of James Edmund Hozier, and presume that he died in infancy.

It was not uncommon at the time that, if a child died young, the next child born of the same gender was given the name of the deceased child. Hence the two John Wallace Hoziers above. Indeed, the use of necronyms, as they are called in genealogical circles, were fairly common in New England in America, too. My great great grandfather was married twice; he lost his wife Caroline and young son, Herbert Eugene Warren, while in his early twenties. Later, remarried, he named the only son from that union, and my great grandfather, Herbert Eugene Warren.

All in all, a touching memorial from the parents of three of their children.

Monday, December 26, 2016

A Stained Glass Memorial to a Wife

Continuing our survey of some of the heraldic stained glass in Glasgow Cathedral, we come to a window with the following inscription:

This window replaces an earlier
window to the memory of
Margaret Shortridge, wife of James
Burns of Kilmakew, who died on
6th March, 1850, and incorporates
the coat of arms from that window.

(The inscription bears an error; it should read James Burns of Kilmhew.)

The coat of arms shown in the window for this couple is:

The Burns arms (on the dexter side of the shield, to the viewer's left) are found in Burke's General Armory, and are blazoned Argent on a chevron azure between two spur rowels and a hunting horn sable, three fleurs-de-lis argent. The crest is A hand holding a hunting horn proper, and the motto is Ever ready.

I do not find the arms of Shortridge in any of the usual sources: Burke's General Armory, An Ordinary of Arms by Balfour Paul, An Ordinary of Arms, Volume II, or the new An Ordinary of Scottish Arms by Malden and Scott. From what I can determine from the window, the arms appear to be: Quarterly: 1 and 4, Argent three thistles slipped and leaved proper; 2 and 3, Or a fess checky azure and argent between three wallets [stringed] proper. I have to presume that the second and third quarters are a cadet of Stewart (Or a fess checky azure and argent). The wallets, which reasonably closely match the illustration in Elvin's A Dictionary of Heraldry, might also be a peculiarly Scottish version of a wallet, a sporran.

Margaret Shortridge, who is memorialized in this window, was the daughter of William Shortridge, of the old Spreull-Shortridge family. She was born about 1805. She married James Burns, son of Reverend John Burns and Elizabeth Stevenson, on the 2nd of June 1835.

James Burns, her husband, was the sixth son and eighth child of the Rev. John Burns, D.D. and Elizabeth Stevenson, daughter of John Stevenson, brewer in Glasgow. He was born in the "Holy Land" (a land or tenement of houses on north side of George Street, a little west of North Portland Street. It got its name from the number of ministers living in it) on the 25th of June, 1789. After the usual education at the Grammar School and the College he went into business, and was for some time a partner with John Duncan.

This image below is a drawing of James Burns of Kilmahew done by Edward Burton.

He retired from active business and developed an interest in estate improvement, acquiring the estates of Kilmahew, Cumbernauld, and Bloomhall in Dunbartonshire. He spent much time on improvements and was a liberal supporter of religious and philanthropic enterprises. He lived out his later years at Kilmahew, near Cardross, where he died on September 6, 1871. He was married twice: first to Margaret Smith (no issue), and secondly to Margaret Shortridge, who bore him one son, John Burns, who inherited his father's estates and became chairman of the Cunard Line.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Wishing You All a Very Happy Christmas!

And may you be happy with the gifts you receive this season, as this fellow seems to be!

And for your viewing pleasure, here's just a few more holiday-themed heraldic items. (The state flags - and modified arms - of Maine and Minnesota were borrowed from the blog The Voice of Vexillology, Flags & Heraldry, whose main page can be found at

(I especially like the way the pine tree has been decorated and the moose has been turned into Rudolph the Red-Nosed, well, Moose.)

So Happy Christmas to you all, from ...


Thursday, December 22, 2016

This One Is A Long, Long Way From Home

In keeping with my last post (with the note that heraldry can be found everywhere), I was driving recently here in Dallas, Texas, and found myself behind a car with this in the back window:

(I apologize for the fuzziness; I had a limited amount of time to get my cellphone out and snap this picture.)

The decal in the lower left (with the legend "My Daughter Is A United States Marine") is modestly heraldic, and the U.S. Army star might also be considered so, but what had attracted my eye and caused me to grapple my cellphone out of my pocket is, of course, the top one labeled "WIEN" above and "Österreich" below (what in English would be "Vienna, Austria").

Here are a couple of modern depictions of the arms of Vienna for comparison:

But in fact the decal is much closer to this rendition of the arms of Vienna from an old Wills's Cigarettes cards series, "Arms of Foreign Cities":

It's just not at all the sort of thing one would expect to find while driving around the streets of Dallas, Texas, on a fall afternoon. As I said, this one is a long, long way from home.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A Heraldry "Bucket Shop" Bites the Dust

In an announcement made yesterday, December 19, 2016, the Castle Heraldry Shoppe (I have to admit, I'm a little surprised that they didn't name it "Ye Olde Heraldrie Shoppe." I guess I should be grateful that they didn't) in Fantasyland at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, will be closing on January 12, 2017.

Open since 1994, the place is one of those "bucket shops" where you could look up your surname in the set of books they have there ...

... and if it was listed there, you could find the "history of your surname" and get "your family crest" printed out on all kinds of merchandise and souvenirs from fancy scrolls and armorial plaques to flags and replica swords.

Unfortunately, of course, like all bucket shops, there is never anything to suggest that you yourself have any right at all to the "crest" that they are selling you. The example that I often use when explaining heraldry to genealogists is that I have the surname Warren on both my father's and my mother's side of the family tree. Burke's General Armory (one of the sources used by many of these bucket shop heraldists) has over sixty different coats of arms linked with various Warrens. Which one of these, if any, belong to any of the Warrens in my family tree? There is simply no way of knowing without doing the genealogical research. And the one "family crest" that these shops are likely to sell me is very unlikely to be one actually used in my family.

So all in all I really can't say that I'm sorry that this shop is going to be closing soon. It's possible that over the years they sparked some interest in heraldry, but that little bit of good is not, to my mind, outweighed by the greater numbers of people who believed that what they were being sold was somehow related to their family line.

You can read some more about this story and see some more pictures of the "shoppe" on the website of The Orange County Register at

Monday, December 19, 2016

Heraldry Is Where You Find It

Once again, it seems, that you can find heraldry all about you, even in the relative heraldic desert that is the United States.

I have to thank my wife Jo for this one. (It's wonderful to have someone who supports my hobby in this way!) She was sharing a ride with a friend as they ran a few errands on their way to the monthly meeting of the Dallas Fiber Artists Guild, and as they were driving out of a parking garage, Jo asked her friend to "Stop!" She then hopped out of the car, took a photograph of the decal on a parked car that she then emailed to me, and which I can now share with you:

It is the arms-like logo of Founders Classical Academy in Lewisville, Texas. (There are a number of Founders Classical Academies across Texas, but this particular quasi-armorial device I only found affiliated with the one in Lewisville, a few miles north of Dallas.)

I also found an embroidered version of the logo on-line:

The design is an odd mix of heraldic and pseudo-heraldic: the underlying elements are a plain gold shield with mantling (vert turned or) without a helmet, torse, or crest. Overlying that plain shield is a variation of the arms of the United States - adding seven stars to the chief - with an American bald eagle supporter (also like the arms of the U.S.) but instead of bearing in its talons an olive branch (dexter) and a sheaf of thirteen arrows (sinister), this eagle bears three arrows in its dexter talon and a key in its sinister. Below the gold shield is a scroll with the motto Scientia Virtus et Libertas (which they say is, in English, "Knowledge, Virtue, Liberty," but which my Latin to English translator [well, translators; I tried more than one with the same results] turns into "Knowledge is power and freedom").

I'm thinking that someone unintentionally missed the target in this design, but they clearly did not have more than a passing knowledge of heraldry. It is an error to have mantling without a helm or torse, and placing one shield (with supporter) partially over another shield demonstrates a misunderstanding of how heraldry is supposed to work. Placing the arrows (often seen as a symbol of war or at least preparedness to go to war) in the dexter talon implies that war is more important than knowledge (symbolized by the key). In the same manner, the eagle in the arms of the United States places the olive branch, a symbol of peace, in the dexter talon, giving it more importance than the ability to go to war.

So, all in all, not a very good design, but still, proof once again that you can find heraldry, or heraldry-like designs, anywhere you go!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Royal Arms in the Sacristy of Glasgow Cathedral

I had noted in my last post that the same pillar in the Sacristy of Glasgow Cathedral that displayed the arms of Bishop John Cameron also displayed the arms of King James I of Scotland (reigned 1406-1437):

This is, of course, the Royal Arms of Scotland, Or a lion rampant within a double tressure flory counter-flory gules. Here the shield is surmounted by a crown.

There is another depiction of the Royal Arms in the Sacristy, placed on the wall in which is set the door through which you enter the room.

It is, of course, of a later date than the arms of James I, above, consisting as it does of the Royal Arms as used in Scotland with an inescutcheon of Hanover surmounted by an electoral bonnet, making this achievement of arms that of King George III as used from 1801-1816. (In 1814, the Electorate of Hanover became a kingdom, and the electoral bonnet was replaced by a crown in the Royal Arms two years later.)

The arms have Scotland in the first and fourth quarters, with the unicorn supporter to dexter and the Scottish Royal crest atop the crown and the Royal motto below the shield. If you look carefully you will note that the branches behind and beneath the motto contain both roses (for England) and thistles (for Scotland), as well as both rose and thistle leaves.

So here in one small part of the Cathedral you have depictions of the coats of arms of two kings, who reigned over Scotland some 400 years apart!

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Arms of a Prelate in the Sacristy of Glasgow Cathedral

In the Sacristy of the Cathedral in Glasgow, we find two depictions of the arms of Bishop John Cameron.

The first is at the top of the central pillar in the room (on the other side this pillar, also near the top, is a depiction of the arms of King James I of Scotland), where it is surmounted at its base by the fish holding in its mouth a ring, one of the premier symbols of Glasgow:

And on the wall immediately over the fireplace is another, larger, rendition. Both examples have a bishop's crozier behind the shield.

The arms are a variant of the arms of Cameron (found both as Gules three bars or and less frequently as Or three bars gules), Barry of six or and gules. (It is entirely possible that the one on the column may be Or three bars gules; the fish is covering the lowest part of the shield, but it seems to me that there is sufficient space there for another gold trait, not seen, at the bottom of the shield.)

According to Wikipedia:

John Cameron (died 1446) was a 15th-century Scottish cleric, bishop of Glasgow, and Keeper of the Privy Seal.

A licentiate in decrees (law), and provost of Lincluden, he became an official of the bishopric of St. Andrews, and a canon of Glasgow, as well as secretary to Archibald Douglas, Earl of Wigtown, who secured for him the living of Rector of Cambuslang.

He transferred into the service of King James I as a secretary in July 1424, and became Keeper of the Privy Seal. When William de Lawedre, bishop of Glasgow, another close advisor of King James, died in 1425, the King chose John Cameron as his successor. John was thus elected to the see, but it was discovered soon after that the pope had already reserved the see for his own nomination. Nevertheless, Pope Martin V provided him to the see on 22 April 1426. He was consecrated sometime in 1427.

John was one of the most intimate advisors and associates of King James, and suffered unpopularity as a result of many of James' actions. On a number of occasions he faced accusations of improper conduct from the papacy, and was accused of being a bad influence on the king, although in reality John was James' man, not the other way around. John also served as an ambassador on embassies to England in 1429, 1430, and 1431. In November 1432, John passed through England again, this time on his way to Rome. He was in Bologna in July 1436, but back in Scotland by September 1437.

He died on 24 December 1446 at Lochwood, seven miles from the burgh of Glasgow.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Stained Glass Memorial to Two Husbands

This next set of memorial windows from Glasgow Cathedral are somewhat unique, in that they appear to have been created to memorialize the husbands of two sisters.

The central window bears the legend:

This window replaces the Munich glass presented in
memory of James Merry, Esq. of Belladrum and
Alexander Cunningham, Esq. of Craigends and
Walkinshaw and replaces the coats of arms from that window.

The left-hand window contains the arms of Merry of Belladrum:

The arms of Merry of Belladrum were matriculated in 1863 and are blazoned: Gules three lions rampant or on a chief argent three mullets gules. The crest, which does not appear in Fairbairn's Crests, is A demi-lion rampant gules crowned or.

James Merry was MP for the Burghs of Falkirk, and an ironmaster from Glasgow. He considerably enlarged Belladrum House after acquiring it in 1857 (below), using the services of the well-known Scottish architect David Bryce.

The right-hand window contains the arms of Cunningham of Craigends:

The arms of Cunningham of Craigends were matriculated in 1674 and are blazoned: Quarterly: 1 and 4, Argent a shakefork sable (Cunningham); 2 and 3, Or a fess checky azure and argent (Stewart). (The window reverses the tinctures of the checky fess, making it argent and azure.) The crest, which is also absent from Fairbairn's, combines the typical Cunningham crest with the mark of the Stewarts: A unicorn's head argent crined and armed or gorged of a collar checky argent and azure.

Alexander Cunningham of Craigends (1804-1866) was the son of Capt. John Cunningham of Craigends and Margaret Cunningham-Fairlie. He married Jane McHardy, who bore him a son, John Charles Cunningham of Craigends, and a daughter, Janet.

But it is the central window of this set of three that really caught my eye:

As you can see, it contains the arms of Merry of Belladrum and of Cunningham of Craigends, each impaling a red field, Merry's with the initials "AM" and Cunningham's with the initials "JM". Presumably these two women were sisters named McHardy, and came from a non-armigerous family, but wanted to memorialize their respective husbands (and their husbands' arms), and having no arms themselves opted for a plain field and their own initials.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Arms of Oswald of Scotstoun

Here is yet another armorial memorial window to be found in the Glasgow Cathedral, this one to a family with some ties to another family whose arms we have already seen.

The window bears the legend:

This window replaces an earlier window
to the memory of the family of Isabel
Oswald of Scotstoun, 1856, and
incorporates the coat of arms from
that window.

The arms of Oswald of Scotstoun were first matriculated in 1764 and are blazoned: Azure a savage wreathed about the head and middle with by leaves having a quiver of arrows by his side bearing a bow in his left hand proper and pointing with his right to a blazing star in the dexter chief point or within a bordure ermine. The crest, not listed in Fairbairn's Crests, is A three-masted ship with the lower sails furled proper flags flying gules, and the motto (also not found in Crests) is Non mihi commodus uni (Not for myself [a] comfortable one [life?]).

Unusually for Scotland, although there are several other instances also to be found among the armorial windows in the Cathedral, the motto is placed beneath the shield rather than above the crest.

Scotstoun is situated on the right bank of the Clyde in the county of Renfrew. The house was originally built about the beginning of the eighteenth century by William Walkinshaw, the then owner, who also adorned the place "with curious orchards and gardens, stately avenues and large enclosures sheltered with a great deal of beautiful planting.” The river front was added in 1825 by the late Miss Oswald from designs of David Hamilton.

George Oswald (1735-1819) was a banker and a tobacco merchant who was elected Rector of the University in 1797. A minister's son from Dunnet in Caithness, Oswald came to Glasgow to work for his uncles, the leading tobacco merchants Richard and Alexander Oswald. He became a partner in the Glasgow tobacco firm Oswald, Dennistoun & Co and in the Glasgow Ship Bank. He inherited the estates of Scotstoun and Balshagray near Glasgow and Auchincruive in Ayrshire.

We have already shared several Dennistoun arms to be found in Glasgow Cathedral in our post of November 17, 2016 at

The following information on the history of the Oswalds of Scotstoun and their estate comes from “The Oswalds of Scotstoun” found on-line at

James Oswald was the son of a well-to-do Burgess of Kirkwall in Orkney, who came over to the mainland in the middle of the seventeenth century and settled in Wick. He had two sons, James and George who were both ministers. James was an Episcopal minister and George was a Presbyterian minister.

James (the Episcopalian minister, 1654 -1699) had two sons Richard (1687 - 1766) and Alexander (1694 - 1763) who were rich merchants and shipowners. The brothers built themselves a grand mansion in the Stockwell area of Glasgow called "Oswald's Land with great cellars below to store tobacco and wines but it was demolished around 1875 to make way for the new bridge being built for the Union Railway Company. They bought Scotstoun estate in 1751. They were bachelors and died at Scotstoun House (which had been built by the above mentioned William Walkinshaw). The estate passed to George Oswald, their second cousin (the son of the Presbyterian minister).

That George Oswald was the Presbyterian minister of Dunnet and had eleven children, the eldest son being James.

This James Oswald (1703-1793) was a minister like his father and succeeded him at the parish of Dunnet. He was a Doctor of Divinity and was the Moderator of the General Assembly in 1765. He later moved to Methven in Perthshire and stayed there as minister until he was aged over eighty when he moved to Scotstoun. He had a number of children, of whom his son George was to inherit Scotstoun Estate from the two bachelor brothers Richard and Alexander as explained earlier.

We now come to George Oswald of Scotstoun (1735-1819) who inherited the estate in 1766. He was a successful Glasgow tobacco merchant and was also a partner in the famous Old Ship Bank. He was Rector of Glasgow University in 1797   His son James Oswald of Scotstoun (1774-1822) a captain in the Royal Navy inherited Scotstoun and when he died in 1822 (presumably unmarried) it passed to his sister Elizabeth (1767-1864).

(Just to complicate matters, there is another James Oswald (1779 - 1835) who was well known in Glasgow. This James was the elder son of Alexander Oswald of Shieldhall who was the brother of George Oswald of Scotstoun (see above). This James was MP for Glasgow and inherited the estate of Auchincruive. According to reference book called "St. Mungo's Bells" published in 1888, Oswald Street in Glasgow was named after the Alexander Oswald of Shieldhall.)

Elizabeth was known as "Old Miss Oswald" and was born and died in Scotstoun House. By the age of 90 she had never seen a doctor and she died aged 98.

On Elizabeth's death, Scotstoun passed to the grandson of her sister Katherine.

Katherine had married Robert Haldane of Airthrie so became Mrs Haldane. They had one married daughter, Mrs Haldane Gordon who had one son James Gordon Oswald. (Note how these families incorporated maiden names and inheritance names into their own name).

James Gordon Oswald was the last owner of the estate of farmlands and it was he who started to feu off the estate for housing at the end of the 1800's. He died at San Remo, Italy in 1897, but his obituary in the Glasgow Herald concentrated on the history of the family and said very little about the man himself. In the history of Scotstoun Churches there is a reference to the fact that he laid down a condition when granting fueus for Scotstoun which stated that "the trafficking or selling spiritous or fermented liquors is forever prohibited".

Following his death in 1897, he was succeeded by his son James William Gordon Oswald who cotinued to feu off the estate and his name appears in many title deeds for South Jordanhill.

Unlike the Smiths of Jordanhill whose family (and all its branches) was fully recorded in "Burke's Landed Gentry", there is no entry for the Oswalds of Scotstoun. There is however a full entry for the Oswalds of Auchincruive which relates to another branch of the Oswald family mentioned briefly above.

All in all, a fascinating history of a family with a most unusual coat of arms.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

A Middleton and Two Campbells

There is another set of three armorial windows in Glasgow Cathedral with the arms of Middleton and two Campbells.

The center window (with the Middleton arms) bears the legend:

This window replaces the Munich glass
presented in memory of William Middleton, Esq.
died September 1850 and incorporates
the coat of arms from that window.

The coat of arms in that window is:

Burke's General Armory gives these arms as: Middleton (Earl of Middleton, Scotland). Per fess or and gules a lion rampant within a double tressure flory counterflory all counterchanged, with the crest Issuing out of a tower sable a lion rampant gules, and the motto Fortis in arduis (Brave in difficulties).

The window here is clearly not that of the Earl of Middleton, but the arms are exactly the same, as is the crest and motto. But the Earldom of Middleton with those arms was created in 1660 and forfeited 1695. (Why, yes, I do have my own copy of Burke's Dormant and Extinct Peerages. Why do you ask?) So I am not at all certain of the relationship, and I have been unable to find any biographical information either on-line or in the Dictionary of National Biography about William Middleton, Esq. who died in September 1850.

To the left and right, respectively, of Mr. Middleton's window are windows containing the following arms:

With no biographical information about Mr. Middleton, it is much tougher to track down to whom these arms belong. G. Harvey Johnston's The Heraldry of the Campbells identifies them as Campbell of Stracathro, with a blazon of Gyronny of eight or and sable within a bordure engrailed azure, on a canton argent a galley oars in action sable and on a chief argent three hunting horns sable viroled or and stringed gules. He states that these arms were recorded in 1859.

The left-hand coat also bears a mullet in the center of the shield for a difference, and both coats bear the Campbell crest of A boar's head proper.

It's a shame that we do not have more information about the individuals memorialized in these windows. The detail in the stained glass is of very high quality, and presumably cost a pretty penny to have done. I just can't find (so far) the individuals being memorialized here.