The Trenbath Coat of Arms
Last reviewed 05 October 2014
This is a photograph of the Trenbath Coat of Arms. Click on the thumbnail to see a larger version. It was sent to me during the 1980s by the American branch of the family. Unfortunately the College of Arms, in London, disown it and said in a letter which was sent to a member of the family in 1990:
The coat of arms of which you sent a photograph appears to [have] a quartered coat. That is to say, it is divided into four by combining, in this case, two different coats of arms. The coat of arms of the male line of the family is normally repeated in the top left hand corner and the bottom right when looking at the shield. The coat in the other two quarters with the eagle's head would come into the family through a marriage with a woman who was an armorial heiress. What makes me think that this shield is slightly odd is that the crest is an eagle's head. The crest has only very rarely been inherited through a female line and, in that case, is normally shown together with the crest of the male line above the shield. It could be that the crest was granted after the two coats of arms were combined, as many early coats of arms did not have crests. However the crest is of such simplicity of design that I cannot beliebe that it is an early one.
He continued, by saying that he would need to make an extensive search in order to establish whether the two coats of arms or the crest are on record as ever having been officially granted or confirmed by the English King of Arms. This would also throw up any pedigrees officially recorded here by the family who might have borne these arms lawfully.
My father, Donald Rahr Trenbath, was very proud of a Victorian pinchbeck seal of an embossed eagle's head, which we still possess. (He always called it a Griffin) I have shown it to a local auctioneer who suggests that a member of the family may have had it made during the nineteenth century. Apparently the Victorians were very keen on doing this. This rather suggests that it was created in England before Robert Crossley Trenbath emigrated to America in about 1871.