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The coat of arms of the v. Heimburg family is a golden shield with three red horizontal stripes or its inverted form. Below are two stories which claim to explain how it came to be so.

Of Bears and Robbers

The legend I've heard from my parents goes as follows: Once upon a time *grin*, in the Middle Ages, a king was hunting in the forest, when, in the heat of the hunt, he lost his guards (or his guards him, whichever way pleases you better). Now alone in the woods, he was threatened by a bear (or a robber). When you're armed for a hunt, you're not armed for a close fight, so our king was in big time trouble. Suddenly, an unknown knight appeared, fought the adversary and killed him. As a sign of gratitude, the king put three fingers in the blood of the killed enemy and signed the knight's shield with it. Other versions go that the knight did not have a shield and the emperor gave him a (his own?) golden shield with these three red lines. Don't sue me over this story, it's only a legend.

Two Emperors

A second story from a document by Pastor Rassauer: "Tradition reports: By arrangement of the Bishop of Mainz, a Frankish nobleman by the name of Anno with a number of warriors came to assist Kaiser [Webmaster: eng. emperor] Friedrich of Germany against the rebellious Saxons. On June 9, 1075, the bloody battle at Hohenburg an der Unstrut was faught. The Saxons were defeated but the victory had cost many lives. Heavily wounded, the noble Anno too lay on the battlefield where Kaiser Heinrich found him. Full of thanks for his and his men's valor, the Kaiser embraced the nobleman, dipped three fingers of his hand into Anno's blood, drew over his golden shield with this, and said: 'This shall henceforth be your coat of arms.' After Anno had recovered from his wounds the Kaiser made the Heymenburg and many surrounding properties subject to him."

Putting It Into Perspective

Now the latter story may seem more plausible, but I was a little bit confused by it. To the best of my knowledge, there seldomly were two emperors in Germany at the same time. And if there was more than one emperor, they were rivals for the single throne, thus unlikely to fight in the same battle side by side, especially when there were rebellions. In that case, one emperor was being rebelled against, while the other one usually (temporarily) sided with the rebels to greaten his strength. And the last point: If they did not fight side by side, and Anno went to help Friedrich, why did Heinrich reward him? I guess you're free to believe whatever you like best. For some facts, go to the "History" section.

Whatever the truth behind the coat of arms, here it is:

The initial coat of arms, now the one of the Goltern line.

Much later, the growing v. Heimburg family split into the line of Goltern, which bears the old coat of arms, and the line of Eckerde, who has chosen an inverted version.

This is their coat of arms:

The Eckerde coat of arms

The text gerade Wege, güldene Wege under each shield roughly translates to "Straight ways are golden ways".

Disclaimer: Although the author of these pages is of the Goltern line, and thus is using the old version of the coat of arms, no offence to the members of the Eckerde line is intended. If you think I should rephrase this or that, tell me.
The two pictures are shamelessly ripped off the web page of Heino v. Heimburg. Thanks.


Embroidery on clothing from Lands' End

Family members can purchase clothing from Lands' End (USA, Germany), an US clothing mail order store, embroidered with the family coat of arms. The current design is a colored reproduction of the Goltern version. It has everything on there except for the wording on the bottom. It is optimized for knit and thus may need some readjustment for other items. Minimum quantity is six pieces, the price is US$ 10.20 added to the base price of each item. If you are interested, drop me a line. I don't know whether the German store has it on file, the American one definately has it. Credit for setting this up goes to Fritz v. Heimburg, and I repeat: I'll only give the code to family members. Hope you enjoy this.


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