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The Coat of Arms displayed on this page has been held by the family since the first generation in America. Our ancestors have endorsed and handed down this arms for the last 424 years.
The colors of the arms are:
Silver - The shield is silver in color.
Black - The Chevron is sable or black which is the emblem of
firmness or fidelity. In the Dexter quarter the symbol of the black clover leaf represents the clover field in
which the oak tree stood
Natural - - On the crest an oak tree (natural color) in which King Charles II was hidden. The oak leaves around the shield are also in natural color.
How was the Coat-Of-Arms bestowed you ask?
In the old days Coats of Arms were often ordered struck and given to individuals by their king for acts of fortitude and fidelity. It was for such an act that James Foote was given the above "Arms."
There are two basic versions or stories that tell how and why the "Arms" was bestowed to our ancestor. In order to provide you with an accurate account of the two versions, we have copied the following excerpts from Vol I, of "Foote Genealogy and History", by Abram W. Foote.
( Extracted from pages 7 and 9 of the above volume I)
From a letter from Jirah Isham Foote, Esq (Belvidere, III, Dec 11, 1894)
"In regard to the Foote Coat of Arms, I have in my possession what is said to be the original, and of which the one owned by the late Rev. Henery Ward Beecher is a copy. I also have a paper in the handwriting of my Great-grand father, Isaac Foote (No 247.......
.Which stated "The following is the King James tradition of the Foote Family Coat of Arms. The Coat of Arms, which I have heard from my early youth, and has been generally believed by my relations and ancestors, so far as I am informed. It was copied by my mother from a writing of the Hon; Isaac Foote (No 247), and was found with the Coat of Arms among his effects:
A Coat of Arms was bestowed on the family of Footes' for the following reasons: In a war between the English and the Scots, King James was in imminent danger of being killed or taken prisoner, and James Foote, a trusty officer, escorted him to a certain wood, where was a large oak tree, the trunk whereof was hollow, he concealed the king, unknown to anyone, until he obtained a safer retreat. And for the act of fortitude and fidelity the king ordered the Coat of Arms to be struck and given to the said James Foote. The chevron in the center of the card is an emblem of firmness and fidelity." We trace our ancestor from this same James Foote."
In Hume's History of England, Vol V, page 417-420, is a similar incident related of Kings Charles I, so much resembling the tradition in regard to James, his immediate predecessor, as to give rise to the query whether the tradition had not changed the name of the King in passing from memory of one to another so many times.
(Extract copied in part from page 9 and 10, Vol I)
Extract from a letter written by Lewis Ray Foote on Aug 24
1896, from Brooklyn, New York.
The histories narrate the story somewhat as follows: The battle of Worcester was fought Sept. 3, 1651. Cromwell, with 30,000 men fell upon Worcester and attacked it, meeting with little resistance. The entire Scottish army was either killed or captured.
The king, Charles the Second, was obliged to fly. He fled some twenty six miles with fifty of his friends, when it was
deemed wise for him to separate from his companions. The Earl of Derby advised him to go to Boscobel. At Boscobel lived one Penderell, a farmer, to whom the king entrusted himself.
Penderel with the assistance of his four brothers, took the king clothed him in garb like their own, led him into a neighboring wood and pretended to employ themselves in cutting fagots (sticks). For better concealment the King climbed an oak tree, where he sheltered himself among the leaves an branches for twenty four hours. This tree was afterwards called the Royal Oak.
The story, as it has been handed down by our ancestors, is that one James Foote, an officer of King Charles the second's army, concealed the King in his flight from Cromwell, after the battle of Worcestor, at a place called Boscobel, in an oak tree, which was located in a clover field: for which the act of chivalry Foote was Knighted, the distinct features of the Arms being an oak tree and a clover leaf. The motto of the arms was "Loyalty and Truth."
Additional Historical Notes
From a letter from Jirah Isham Foote, Esq (Belvidere, III,
Dec 11, 1894)
The following is the pedigree of the ancient family of Footes, taken from authentic history. It appears that some time
between A. D. 1630 and 1635, three individuals by the names of Nathaniel, Caleb, and Pasco came to this country from Colchester, in England, and settled as follows: Pasco settled at Salem, Mass where there are now some of his descendants. Caleb is supposed to have died in Boston, without issue. Nathaniel , first settled at Watertown, Mass in 1636. He, with a number of others removed to Wethersfield, CT and were among the first that settled there.
He had two sons named Nathaniel and Robert. Robert settled in the town of Branford, in the county of New Haven. Nathaniel the eldest, who settled in Wethersfield, married Margaret Bliss, of Springfield, Mass. He was the principle agent in getting the town of Colchester located and incorporated, and gave it the name Colchester (the name of the town of his nativity).