Wagner Heraldry And Genealogy: A Geographical Perspective
Wagner Heraldry And Genealogy: A Geographical Perspective
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Product #: FR0701

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Wagner Heraldry and Genealogy: A Geographical Perspective; by Frederick George Siler; 2017; 163 pp; 8.5x11; paperback; ISBN: 978-1-62859-167-5 Item #: FR0701.

This volume deals with the Germanic heraldry of families whose name was one of the most common in Germany - that of Wagner. The Wagner surname was first found in the old Duchy of Saxony which existed from 804 to 1296. Its lands included what are now the modern German states of Bremen, Hamburg, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Schleswig-Holstein, and Saxony-Anhalt. The name is now well established in Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Eastern Europe, and elsewhere as well as in other German-speaking countries.

Because the Wagner surname has become widespread, not only in German-speaking lands but throughout central and eastern Europe many different spellings, have arisen over the centuries. In English and other European languages, including Yiddish and Dutch, the name is also spelled Wegener, Wagnor, Wagener, Waggoner, Wagoner, Waegener, Wagner, Wagonner, Wegner, Waganer, Waggener, Wagen, Weagener, Wagnerin, Wahner, Wahnerr, Wehner, Vegener, Vagner, Vegner, and many more.

German heraldry is unlike British heraldry where a coat-of-arms is associated with one person. Siler's book includes arms that originated as house marks, guild marks, and burgher arms that have been used by families for centuries. Also included are noble armorial bearings that have been granted to the children of an individual and have been passed down through descendants.

It should be noted that the volume is heavily footnoted, allowing the researcher to locate and examine the original source materials from which the author drew his information. An amazing place index is found at the rear of the book, allowing genealogists to often associate a specific place with Wagner families. It is the author's belief that there is often a coat of arms that may be associated with one's European ancestor. It may not be that of a direct ancestor or that of ones ancestral family, but it could well be linked, if only by the proximity of geographical location.

This one-of-a-kind book is the first in a series exploring the heraldry and genealogy of common German surnames with a focus on the English-speaking family historian who seeks another fresh approach to their research. This is not another book about how to trace your German ancestors or a reprint of readily available information from old sources. Most family historians will concede that the research process begins to become more tedious when we attempt to deal with European historical locations and records written in a foreign language. Armed with this book, you will start to overcome barriers of language and shifting state boundaries. Learn how the following components can enhance the story of your Wagner ancestors. Included in this particular volume are:

  • Over 2,300 historical and modern geographical locales of the Holy Roman, German and Austrian Empires, as well as Switzerland;
  • Synopses of 31 current and past political states and regions; with links to a catalog of genealogical records by FamilySearch;
  • Colorful illustrations of 53 coats-of-arms along with genealogical and geographical information on 70 Wagner, Wehner, Wagener, Wegner, or Wegener families.

The following is from the Table of Contents



CHAPTER 1 - Synthesizing Heraldry and Genealogy for a Practical Research Tool

  • What is Heraldry?
  • Common aspects of Genealogy
  • Heraldry and the family historian
  • Geography as a fundamental tool for integrating heraldry and genealogy
  • Associating a coat-of-arms with your ancestor

CHAPTER 2 - A Brief Introduction to German Heraldry

  • Historical Background of Germanic Heraldry
  • Components of the Germanic Coat-of-Arms
  • Modern German Heraldry

CHAPTER 3 - Heraldic Symbolism

  • Introduction to heraldic symbolism
  • Symbolism of the colors, furs, lines, divisions, and ordinaries
  • Symbolism of the common charges

CHAPTER 4 - An Introduction to the Wagner Surname

  • Origins and meanings of the name
  • Variations of the Wagner surname
  • Location and distribution of the surname
  • Some historical documentations of Wagner

CHAPTER 5 - Wagner Armorial Bearings: Defining the Elements

  • Introduction to the geographical territory
  • Bearer(s) of the coat-of-arms
  • Particular geographical locale(s) associated with the bearer(s)
  • Description of the coat-of-arms
  • Interpreting the coat-of-arms
  • Other Wagner arms bearers of this geographical territory
  • Additional geographical and genealogical resources

CHAPTER 6 - Wagner Heraldry and Genealogy: A Geographical Perspective

  • Austria
  • Baden-Württemberg
  • Bavaria
  • Berlin
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • East Prussia
  • Estonia
  • Hamburg
  • Hesse
  • Latvia
  • Lower Austria
  • Lower Saxony
  • Mecklenburg-Vorpommeran
  • North Rhine-Westphalia
  • Pomerania
  • Prussia
  • Rhineland-Palatinate
  • Saarland
  • Salzburg
  • Saxony
  • Saxony-Anhalt
  • Silesia
  • Slovakia
  • Styria
  • Switzerland
  • Thuringia
  • Transylvania
  • Tyrol
  • Vienna
  • West Prussia

CHAPTER 7 - Interpreting the Heraldry of Wagner

  • Charges associated with the meaning of the surname
  • Coats-of-arms that display symbols of the bearer’s religious faith
  • Armorial achievements that illustrate a military theme
  • Arms that address a significant accomplishment of the bearer
  • Charges that identify an occupation of the bearer or his ancestors
  • Symbols of honorable characteristics
  • Ancient house or family marks
  • Dealing with different branches of a family in Germanic Ancestry

APPENDIX A - Glossary of Heraldic Symbolism

APPENDIX B - Online Genealogy Research by Location

APPENDIX C - Gallery of Wagner Coats-of-Arms

INDEX - Historical and Modern Geographical Locales