Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Our Tornberg Coat of Arms

Hello All,
Ida Tornberg was my Great Grandmother.

Relationship Chart

Ida Tornberg married John Albert Mattson
Walter Mattson who married Violet Pierce
Luella, Linda, John, and Marvin

There are many posts in this blog about our Swedish / Finnish Tornberg ancestors. This post introduces you to the family's Coat of Arms shown above.

A description of the symbols represented in the Coat of Arms is given below.


Tornberg Coat of Arms

"A golden upper part with three teeth on a red shield, a waving silver log in lower field with a black hunting spear. Red covering of the helmet with silver lining. Silver and red top braid. Golden flaming ring as helmet decoration, with a rising black wedge. A golden latin cross on top of the wedge."

The theme of the coat of arms refers to the distribution of the family in three northern countries and to the origin of the word "thorn", which means spearhead in the ancient scandinavian language. The origin of the family is in Ylitornio and the word Tornio might mean the spearhead shaped island in Tornio River. The helmet decoration refers also to Ylitornio and the wedge, describing a church tower refers to the many clergymen among our ancestors.

In the colors we can see the following: the red is the Lappish red, which appears in many northern coat of arms of provinces and municipalities. Also it refers to our ancestors, the bailiffs of Tornio Lapland who had red robes. The word "torn" also means tower. The family name "Tornberg" is often translated "tower mountain" in Finnish and that is why the helmet decoration contains a tower with a cross, which relates of the priests of the family. The three mountains on the shield describe the main area of distribution of the family in Finland, Sweden and Norway or the forests and hills of Tornio and Kemi rivers and Kuusamo. The silver wave can describe Tornio and Kemi rivers and the waterways of Kuusamo. The head of the hunting spear refers to the source of livelihood in the northern wilderness.

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