SA coats of arms feature in new book

Twelve years of research went into an illustrated coat of arms book of South Australian families, launched by a local author at the Port Lincoln Library last week.

Geologist and genealogist Jeff Poole created An Illustrated General Armory of South Australia so South Australians had access to a comprehensive record of the coats of arms that were in use or had previously been used by South Australian families.

Mr Poole said he has been tracing his family tree for about 40 years, which started his fascination with genealogy.

He has traced his family tree back to the 1400s.

“It’s not that easy,” Mr Poole said.

“I’ve walked through a lot of cemeteries looking at headstones.

“The research has been’s been a great learning process over the years.”

Three Lower Eyre Peninsula families feature in the book – the Wollastons, the Marchants and the Mortlocks.

Mr Poole said coats of arms were used to rapidly identify people on the battlefield in medieval times.

He said it was difficult to discover certain relatives and track various family lines and trees as women and siblings were not recorded.

“If you weren’t the eldest son of the eldest son of the eldest son, you were left out,” Mr Poole said.

Mr Poole said many people asked for more information about their families when his book was published and he would like to update the record for South Australia.

Mr Poole can be contacted about genealogy and heraldry via email at