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Is Any restrictions on the use of municipal coats-of-arms? on-topic for this site? We've handled questions about personal coats-of-arms before, but is this a stretch too far? (My view is that it is off-topic, but I'm just one voice).

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I would tend to agree that it is going off topic, if not already there.

My reasons for this are:

  • As @ColeValleyGirl illustrated in her comment on the question - any image associated with family history is not in and of itself the subject of research, but rather a nice piece of narrative for our stories.
  • Any 'municipal' imagery by its definition, cannot relate to an individual, only represent the area - either geographical or institutional - and therefore cannot reasonably be used as evidence in genealogical research.
  • Although we have dealt with individual heraldry before, it is generally out of the scope of our general discussions.

Willing to be taught otherwise, but I would agree that after reading the FAQs again that this question is off topic for now, unless it can be re-written to demonstrate exactly why it is relevant to the research of @bgwiehle

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  • "and therefore cannot reasonably be used as evidence in genealogical research" raises very pointedly the long-ignored question of the role of FH as opposed to G in this site. Closing this as off-topic rather than trying to improve a (not very good) first question would send a message about a very narrow interpretation of scope -- which may be what "the community" wants. – Fortiter Mar 8 '13 at 12:41
  • @Fortiter, I'd much prefer to see it improved rather than closed, but I can't immediately see how to do it. – user104 Mar 8 '13 at 14:52
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    I don't think the gist of the question is necessarily off-topic (am I contradicting myself when looking again at my own answer?) - rather, what is lacking is the demonstration of any linkage to a family member. The topic I raised about contracts and prices for tramp-sailings btw USA and Australia concentrated (in its answers) on transport not family history. However, it was, I believe, very relevant to my GG uncle as he was working on the ship in question. This question demonstrated no link to an individual. The Q could be improved by adding such a link - not something we can do. – AdrianB38 Mar 8 '13 at 15:09
  • @Fortiter - I tend to read "genealogy" as synonymous with "family history" so didn't have any problems with AvieRose's reply. Personally I think Americans use both terms in different ways so have given up trying to distinguish! – AdrianB38 Mar 8 '13 at 15:13
  • @Fortiter, I've suggested an improvement at genealogy.stackexchange.com/questions/3251/… – user104 Mar 8 '13 at 16:32
  • @AdrianB38, see genealogy.stackexchange.com/questions/3251/… – user104 Mar 8 '13 at 16:32
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Heraldry is a different discipline from family history. Transmission of arms drove the creation of genealogy as a discipline but the questions involved in that topic had nothing to do with genealogy. If we were the Institute of Heraldry & Genealogical Studies, it would be on topic but...

As it is, we can make intelligent guesses but it's my use of logic (and Google) not my knowledge of heraldry that drove my answer. Not a good place to be.

I was going to ignore it but someone seems to think it's a good question...

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