The surname of FENTRESS was a German and Ashkenazic Jewish occupational name for a maker of windows. The name was derived from the Old German word FENSTE (window) and rendered in medieval documents in the Latin form FENESTRA. Medieval windows were often just holes in the wall. Later they were filled with a frame containing thin layers of translucent horn, and eventually glass, normally only in small pieces leaded together. In the case of the German name from any of various minor places so called, being from a gap in a range of hills or a clearing in a wood. It may also have been a name for someone who lived in a house remarkable for its windows. The name is also spelt FENSTERER, FENSTERMANN, FENSTERMACHER, FENETRE and DELAFENESTRE. Between 1880 and 1914, almost three million Jews left Eastern Europe, representing the most extensive migration in Jewish history since the expulsion of Jews from Spain at the end of the 15th century. Most of the emigrants fled from Russia, where pogroms had raged, and where the laws of Czar Alexander III had oppressed Jewish life. Most of the emigrants departed from Hamburg and went to the United States, but some emigrated to Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada and South Africa. While the vast majority of the immigrants to America came through Ellis Island from 1907 to 1914 thousands of East European Jews participated in a little known episode in American Jewish history. They migrated through the port of Galveston, Texas and then were routed to towns throughout the Midwest where lodging and jobs awaited them. The word Heraldry is derived from the German HEER, (a host, an army) and HELD, (champion): the term BLASON, by which the science is denoted in French, English, Italian and German, has most probably its origin in the German word 'BLAZEN' (to blow the horn). Whenever a new knight appeared at a Tournament, the herald sounded the trumpet, and as competitors attended with closed vizors, it was his duty to explain the bearing of the shield or coat-armour belonging to each. Thus, the knowledge of the various devices and symbols was called 'Heraldry'. The Germans transmitted the word to the French, and it reached England after the Norman Conquest of 1066.
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