The Arkansas State Society, Colonial Dames 17th Century (CDXVIIC), voted to create an Arkansas State Heraldry and Coats of Arms (COA) club. Officials made the decision during the Board of Management (BOM) meeting at Little Rock recently.

Members of the BOM traveled from Camden, Stuttgart, Pine Bluff, Hot Springs, Batesville, Clinton and the surrounding areas to hear the proposal, according to a news release.

The Arkansas COA club will conduct a heraldry workshop at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22, at the Hot Springs Country Club. Heraldry expert Maureen McGowan-Singer, past National Heraldry Chairperson for CDXVIIC, will conduct the workshop. McGowan-Singer has also written a book on the subject.

“CDXVIIC is one of the few lineage societies which has heraldry at the core of its objectives,” according to the release. “The society has one of the largest collections of coats of arms in the country at its national headquarters in Washington, D.C. It continuously adds to its extensive coats of arms collection, maintaining the original lineage provided by members during the application process. It is hoped the Arkansas COA club will encourage ladies to prove heraldry to honor their Armorial Ancestors.”

According to the news release, heraldry is nearly 900 years old, but still in use.

“Personal heraldry is awarded to an individual not a family or a surname. CDXVIIC members trace their heraldry through a proven ancestor to whom arms were granted in the past,” according to the release.

“The first coat of arms was used to distinguish one knight from another. Because of this, knights began to paint symbols on their shields. They eventually began to put the symbol on their banner and the coat they wore over their armor. This is how it got the name ‘coat of arms’,” according to the release.

The heraldry workshop will be preceded by a Salad Buffet luncheon at 12:30 p.m. Oct. 22. A pre-paid reservation of $23 is required. Checks should be made payable to ASCDXVIIC and mailed to Judy Robbins, 34 Badajoz Way, Hot Springs Village, AR 71909-2901.