Probably the most famous of the Hockin exploits is that which resulted in the family, being granted arms, by the Queen. (I think that the following was an article which appeared in a newspaper or magazine)
"In the time of War with France, at the beginning of Queen Anne's reign, a French ship cruising in the Bristol Channel, came to anchor off an estate called Godrevy, in the parish of Gwithian, then in possession of the Rev.John Hockin, who was one of the principal inhabitants of the parish, and it being conjectured that the Frenchman's intention was to send in a boat to plunder the house, which stood alone, and to carry off the cattle from the estate, the said John Hockin and his family became alarmed, and collected their friends amd neighbours to keep a watch that night on the cliffs.
At daybreak, they all dispersed. thinking that the danger over, but just as Thomas Hockin, then a young man, was getting into bed, another person whose fears had taken him out there more than once to take a view, came in great hurry, and told him that a boat full of men was making for the shore.
At hearing this, the said Thomas Hockin slipped on his clothes and catching up a gun, and a pole to feign the appearance of another man, ran out and passed down a steep hill to the sea in sight of the boat from which he was fired at several times, he how ever got behind a rock which served him as a kind of breastwork, and thence with his gun, he fired at the boat with so much vigour and effect as to prevent the crew's landing, and at last made them turn about and row back as fast as they could."
For the above action, the Hockin family was granted, in1764, their coat of arms:-
(the fleurs de lis are in disarray, to denote the French in confusion)
These arms were granted to all the DESCENDANTS of the original John Hockin the Hurler, the father of Thomas who had been the one in action against the French. They were granted by Queen Anne, not the College of Heralds, although one of the Heralds (Francis Martin, Bluemantle Pursuivant), drew up the official document, with the description of the arms, the crest and made up the motto:-
"Hoc in Loco Deus Rupes" = This in the Place of God's Rock i.e. Hockin at Godrevy.
Being a grant from the Queen, these arms pass down through both the male and the female lines, unlike one from the College of Heralds.
I have seen, but do not have a copy of the original Herald's document. That was signed by the particular Herald. The above has been taken from a carbon (typed) copy of an article for publication (date of original publication unknown).
Back to the Hockin Home Page