The Blauvelt Coat-of-Arms
Louis L. Blauvelt was the founder of the Association of Blauvelt Descendants (1926) and author of The Blauvelt Family Genealogy (1957). During his research, he found the description of a coat of arms or shield in Johannes Rietstap’s Armorial General (1884) on p. 215:
“Blauwvelt — Enkhuizen. D’azure, a la fasce d’or, acc. de trois bes. du meme.” Roughly translated: Blue, a gold fasse, (horizontal bar), between three gold besants, (disks). This was the shield of Pieter Blaeuvelt of Enkhuysen, the first known Blaeuvelt. We believe that our Gerrit Hendricksen van Deventer was a descendant of this Pieter.
Pieter Blaeuvelt was born sometime around 1485-1487 and died sometime after 1542. He was a merchant ship owner and was the manager of the Enkhuizen city government, appointed by the first Count of Egmont, John III, in 1514. He was a member of the merchant ruling class in the Netherlands. He served as manager of Enkhuizen from at least 1514 until 1539 (twenty-five years). Then he became the city manager of Grotebroek, a smaller city west of Enkhuizen, in the 1540s.
It would seem that Pieter used his blue shield with the gold bar and disks to identify his ships, i.e., to show his ownership of them. In the Netherlands and elsewhere, a coat of arms or shield was universally used to identify a person, family, organization, school, corporation or, as in this case, Pieter and his ships. Our “Blauvelt” name likely derived from Pieter’s coat-of-arms. The background of a shield is called the field, hence the name Blaeuvelt meaning blue field. Pieter was variously identified as Pieter Blauvelt, Blaeuvelt, van Blaeuvelt, or Pieter Blaeuscuit. His wife’s name was Geertruid Blaeuscuit indicating the fluid nature of surnames at that time.
Officers of the Association
Brian M. Blauvelt
Marilyn N. Bisgrove
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