AMERICAN PEERAGE ®
The concept of an American Peerage derives from our Colonial origins in the 17th & 18th centuries. Colonial American males were British [England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland] citizens until the Treaty of Paris in 1783, and some were members of the aristocracy. Going back to the concept of being ennobled as the result of heroic deeds, some conceived the idea of making a new aristocracy, uniquely American, reflecting our brave new country. Others pointed out that American citizens [male landowners] were all created equal in the eyes of God. And so it is that by choosing to remain here, Americans who were formerly aristocrats became equal with all other male citizens in our new country by virtue of their oaths of allegiance to our Republic. Americans can still receive Honorary Arms and under certain circumstances new Grants of Arms. See also Heraldry and Coats of Arms.
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