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Monday, January 14, 2013

Kleger Coat of Arms from Kaltbrunn

Family Kleger Coat of Arms in stained glass window, Catholic Church of Kaltbrunn, St. Gallen, Switzerland.

This photo was taken by Dr. Wolf Seelentag (a medical physicist who is the head of the Department of Radiation Oncology of the Kantonsspital in St. Gallen), who happens to also be a brilliant hobby genealogist.  He has a website and forum on Swiss Genealogy, and I have recently been in contact with him by e-mail. He told me he has gone to Kaltbrunn to photograph the stained glass windows in the church, with the coats of arms of their sponsors, and sent me this picture!!!

I asked him if I could use the image on this blog, and he said yes, and requested I add a link to his forum with is about genealogy in the region.  If you click on this exact link you will see where he posted this image:

The Coat of Arms I had put on this blog previously (June 2011) was from a Kleger in Prussia.

This Coat of Arms is from the Kleger family in Kaltbrunn, Canton St. Gallen, Switzerland, which I believe really is MY ancestral family.

I have seen an outline of this Coat of Arms in an entry book I found in the Family History Library:

From book: "Historisch-Biographisches Lexikon Der Schweiz Allgemeinen Geschichtforschenden Gesellschaft Der Schweiz" by Prof. Dr. Heinrich Turler, Victor Attinger and Dr. Marcel Godet written in 1927.

It is a compilation of the known biographies of historic families of Switzerland at the time.  This entry is divided into 2 parts: the Kleger family in Canton St. Gallen - where the Coat of Arms is shown in shaded form - and the Kleger family in Canton Zurich.  Wolf Seelentag has suggested that the Zurich family Kleger would be of the Reformed Church, so probably not related to our Catholic St. Gallen Klegers.

There is a third source of this same Coat of Arms, a description from a document titled "Linth=Blatter Beilage zum,, St. Galler Volksblatt" by Johann Fah, written in 1928.

I paid someone to translate that document, and his translation is: "The Klegers of Kaltbrunn feature a three-leaf clover in their Coat of Arms.  This clover is set on a blue, and sometimes red background.  The clover leaf is typically portrayed in all of the Kleger family's seals [or signets] This seal is still affixed today to a number of documents/deeds and liens (Urkunden und Pfandverschreibungen).  The fact that the coat of arms symbol of the cloverleaf never went through any change leads to the suggestion that these people understood a different meaning for the word Kleger.  Otherwise, they would not have placed a cloverleaf in their coat of arms [he is suggesting here that to the ancient family, Kleger might have meant something similar to clover]. The earlier pronounced presumption/suggestion that Kleger may be a derivative of Klegower may perhaps not be erroneous, though to date it also hasn't been possible to directly prove that the Klegers descended from the Klegowers.  The transcription/inscription on the Kleger signets/seals of 1545-1725 always appears as 'Kleger'.  The word Kleger is there fore historically correct when spelled 'Kleger'.  Let us leave it at that.  Let us also leave it to the representatives of this family to take care, that its old and honorable/venerable reputation may be preserved.                                  Joh. Faeh"

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