Heyward Coat of Arms


A Coat-of-Arms consists of the shield, crest, helmet, wreath, ornamentation and motto. The Arms (meaning the shield and all things on it) form the most important part and should be mentioned first. The Crest is a figure set upon a Wreath placed above the helmet. The Wreath (which has exactly six folds for good Heraldry) connects the Crest and the helmet. The helmet (which depicts rank) of an Esquire or Gentleman is a steel profile ornamented with gold, with beavor and visor both closed. The Motto is placed under the shield or above the Crest, according to one’s fancy.

The Heyward Coat-of-Arms:

ARMS. Azure; a Chevron, per pale Or and Ermine, between three garbs of the Second

CREST. On a Wreath of the Colours a dexter Arm embowed, habited Gules, in the hand proper, a Tomahawk

GRANT. Dated December 1, 1768. Recorded in College of Arms, London, Eng., in Book of Grants, vol XI, Page 326, et seq.

MOTTO. Labore et Numine (Translation: “Work and the love of God” )

The tomahawk blade has created some controversy. Some say the blade should be up (when used with a chopping motion) and others say it should be down (when thrown like a tomahawk). The “blade up” is the way it was drawn originally by the British artist who were more familiar with the battle axe than the tomahawk. Therefore that is the “official” depiction.

James Barnwell Heyward II, in his book Heyward, tells the story of how the family coat-of-arms was obtained.

Note: “Thomas Heyward #14” is Thomas Heyward (1746 – 1809), signer to the Declaration of Independence; “Colonel Daniel Heyward” is his father, Daniel Heyward (1720 – 1777); and “Captain Thomas Heyward” is his grandfather Thomas Heyward (1700 – 1737).

From Heyward by James Barnwell Heyward II, p. 41

As heretofore mentioned, Thomas Heyward #14 during his Law course in London, carried into effect the desire of his father that a petition should be presented to the College of Arms re­questing an investigation as to the authority on the part of the family of Heyward of South Carolina to use a Coat-of-Arms.

As has been explained the foundation of said petition must have been the engraving on the outside of the gold watch that had been inherited by Colonel Daniel Heyward; the meaning and merit where-of has been discussed. Having got that far it seems as if Colonel Daniel Heyward felt that in the event he did have the right to use one, then he preferred a Seal or Crest that would commemorate the exposure of the life of his own father Captain Thomas Heyward during his military services against the Indians of America; therefore, he instructed his son to try to have the Crest in the new Grant depicted so as to show a tomahawk in lieu of the old time battle axe.

That the plan relating to the change in the Crest somehow mis-carried among the clerical force at the College of Arms is certain, because, the artist who made the drawing of the Crest depicted in the register at the College simply copied the device as it was engraved on the old gold watch; which would indicate that he either lacked knowledge as to the difference between a battle axe and a tomahawk, or he had failed to understand the intent of the memorialist.

On the other hand, when it came to the artist who was expected to make a copy of the register in the form of a Letters Patent to be issued to the Grantee, he not only evinced that he under­stood the difference between the two said weapons, but also that distinct rule in Heraldry which says, “When not otherwise expressed in the language of the Grant, any device must be depicted in the manner in which the device is commonly used”.

So then, since a tomahawk is a war weapon that is held aloft and hurled, its edge to be ef­fective against an enemy must be held downward, as the weapon turns in its flight; whereas, the battle axe is supposed to be retained in the grasp of the warrior, who holding it aloft brings the edge of the weapon directly down on the person of his enemy; hence, its edge must be held upwards.

According to that construction, the manner of depicting a tomahawk as it appears in the Letters Patent issued to the Memorialist Thomas Heyward, which he brought to America, is strictly in error; whereas, the manner of its depicting in the original register at the College of Arms not only nullifies the intent of the Patentee but sets at naught a positive rule of Herald­ry itself.

The exasperating feature of the mishap is the fact the two generations directly following the obtaining of the new grant were the ones who happened to have the means to visit and make long stays in London where they had their silver tableware manufactured to suit their own taste; the respective merchants furnishing said articles of course being referred to the register at the College for information as to how the family Crest was to be engraved thereon; all of which was done in several cases, upon all the articles being brought to America (odd as it may seem) there were so few of the family who had ever seen the certificate that none of the individuals during all their lives ever entertained the least suspicion that the Crest on their silver did not correspond with the one in use by those who had been able to imitate the de­vice as depicted in the Certificate in South Carolina.

The responsibility for such ridiculous gaucherie rests entirely with Judge Heyward, who, al­though he did accomplish the desire of his father in that the renewed grant should be so word­ed as to commemorate the life of Captain Thomas Heyward of James Island in his warfare with the American Indians; yet he was so remiss as not to make sure that the Crest, as depicted in the register, enforced his father’s sentiment. The result being that as posterity widens out and they necessarily become disassociated with the certificate in America; they will naturally utilize the register in London because of its accessibility; even though some did not take up with the idea that the instrument in this Country was spurious.

An idea that would not be unreasonable, as they may learn what some of those who are now alive do not seem to know which is that the Warrant constitutes the grant; the registration its fulfillment; while the Certificate is simply the revealment or publication thereof.

If it was so that the Certificate or Letters Patent in America was a deed, such as a grant to a lot of land would be, and the registration in London simply its legal record as an insurance against the loss of the original, then the registration might be purged of error, but such is not the situation.

The irony of the situation is the fact that as long as he lived Judge Heyward used a Seal that was patterned after the Crest depicted in the Letters Patent, viz. the weapon typifying a sure enough tomahawk, whereas, quite a majority of his lineal descendants wear a Seal that is patterned according to the register at the College, that is to say, the weapon is a battle axe, the edge being up.

From Heyward by James Barnwell Heyward II, p. 44


Whereas, Thomas Heyward of the Middle Temple London Gent: eldest son and Heir of Daniel Heyward of the Parish of St. Luke in Granville County in the province of So. Ca., Esqr, by Mary his wife daughter of William Miles of the Parish of St. Andrew in Berkley County in the province aforesaid, Gent: and grandson of Thomas Heyward of the said Parish of St. Andrew, Gent: deceased, hath represented unto me in behalf of his said father Daniel Heyward that his family have long used a Coat of Arms and Crest, but not being able through the incidents of time and distance from the Mother Country to ascertain their connection with any family of the name recorded in the Heralds Office, and being unwilling to bear any ensigns of Honor without lawful authority, he hath requested my warrant for your granting to him and his family such Arms and Crest as he and they may lawfully bear and use. I Richard Earl of Scarborough, Deputy (with Royal Approbation) To the Most Noble Edward Duke of Norfolk Earl Marshal and Hereditary Marshal of England, do hereby direct and authorize you to grant and assighn unto the said Daniel Heyward, father of the Memorialist Thomas Heyward, such Arms and Crests accordingly, the same to be borne and used by him the said Daniel Heyward and his Descendants and also by the descendants of his father Thomas Heyward, before mentioned, requiring also your care that the same be duly registered in the College of Arms–For which this shall be your Warrant. Given under my Hand and Seal the 26 day of Nov. 1768.

Scarbrough M–

To Stephen Martin Leake Esqr/Garter Principal King of Arms/ and Sir Charles Townley, Knt Clarenceux/King of Arms

From Heyward by James Barnwell Heyward II, p. 45



TO all and Singular to whom these presents shall come, Stephen Martin Leake, Esquire, Garter Principal King of Arms, and Sir Charles Townley, Knt. Clarenceux King of Arms of the South, East and West parts of England from the River Trent Southwards, send greeting: Where­as those ancient Bages or Ensigns of Gentility commonly called or known by the name of Arms have heretofore been and still are continued to be, conferred upon deserving Persons, to distinguish them from the common Sort of People, who neither can, or may pretend to, use them without lawful authority: And Whareas Thomas Heyward of the Middle Temple, London, Gent; Eldest Son and Heir of Daniel Heyward, of the Parish of St. Luke in Granville County in the Province of South Carolina, Esquire, by Mary his wife, daughter of William Miles of the Parish of St. Andrew in Berkeley County in the Province aforesaid Gent: and Grandson of Thomas Heyward of the said Parish of St. Andrew, Gentleman, deceased, hath represented unto the Right Honorable Richard, Earl of Scarbrough, Deputy (with the Royal approbation) to the most Noble Edward Duke of Norfolk, Earl Marshal and Hereditary Marshal of England, That, his Family have long used a Coat-of- Arms and Crest, but not being able through the Incidents of Time and Distance from the Mother Country, to as­certain their connection with any Family of the name recorded in the Herald’s Office; and being unwilling to use any Ensigns of Honor without lawful authority, did therefore request the favor of his Lordship’s Warrant for Our granting and Confirming to him and his Descendents, and to the Descendants of his Grandfather Thomas Heyward above named, such Arms and Crest as he and they may lawfully bear and use; And forasmuch as his Lordship did, by Warrant under his Hand and Seal bearing Date the twenty-sixth day of No­vember last past, direct and authorize us to grant and assign unto the said Daniel Heyward, Father of the aforesaid, Thom­as Heyward, such Arms and Crest ac- accordingly, the same to be borne by him the said Daniel Heyward and his De­scendants, and also by the Descendants of of his Father Thomas Heyward before mentioned Know Ye therefore, that we the said Garter and Clarenceux, in pursuance of the Consent of the said Earl of Scarbrough. and by Virtue of the Letters Patent of Our Several Offices, to Each of Us respectively granted under the great Seal of Great Britain, have granted, and do, by these Presents assign unto the said Thomas Heyward the Arms follow’ing, that is to say, Azure, a Chevron per Pale Or and Ermine between three Garbs of the Second, and for the Crest, On a Wreath of the Colours, a dexter Arm embowered, habited Gules, in the Hand proper, a Tom­ahawk, as the same are, in the margin hereof, more plainly depicted*; to be borne and used for Ever hereafter by him the said Thomas Heyward, and his Descend­ants, by the said Daniel Heyward and his Descendants and also by the Descend­ants of Thomas Heyward, Father of the Daniel Heyward, with their due and proper Differences, according to the an­cient Practice and Custom of Arms, with­out the Let or Interruption of any Person or Persons whatsoever. In witness where­of, We the said Garter and Clarenceux King of Arms have to these Presents sub­scribed Our Names, and affixed the Seals of Our several offices this First Day of December, in the Ninth Year of the Reign of Our Sovereign Lord George the third by the Grace of God, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, etc.; and in the Year of Our Lord, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Sixty Eight.

S. Martin Leake, Garter,
Principal King of Arms,
Carles Townley, Clarenceux,
King of Arms.