Search billions of records on


Forty-one years have passed since Mr. Griffin came to Kansas and marvelous have been the changes which have occurred in the commonwealth since that time. Kansas had not then taken on statehood and was still under territorial rule. With the growth and development of the northeastern portion of the state Mr. Griffin has been actively identified and at all times has been found a loyal and progressive citizen, true to the interests of the community with which he is connected. He was born sixty-seven years ago in Franklin county, Vermont, a son of William Griffin, whose birth occurred in the same county. The grandfather was David Griffin, of Irish lineage. The mother of our subject bore the maiden name of Jane Miller. She, too, was born in the Green Mountain state and was of French lineage. She died in her native state in 1847, after which the father removed to Scranton, Greene county, Iowa, where he died at the age of seventy-five years. He served as a soldier in the Civil war, being a member of the Twelfth Illinois Infantry. By occupation he was a farmer, following that pursuit in order to support his family, which included his wife and five children, namely Richard, of this review; Levi, now deceased; Charles, William and Louise. There was also one other child, who died in early life. After the death of his first wife the father was a second time married and had one child by that union.

Richard G. Griffin, whose name introduces this review, was reared in the Green Mountain state and in early life learned the blacksmith's trade, which he followed for a number of years in the east. In 1857 he emigrated westward, hoping to benefit his financial condition in a region less thickly settled, believing that the opportunities there afforded would be superior to those in the east. For two years he resided in Illinois and in 1859 he came to Kansas, locating in Brown county. During the Civil war he responded to the country's call for troops, enlisting, in 1861, as a member of Company D, Eighth Kansas Infantry, with which he served until the close of the war in 1865. He was at Nashville, Tennessee, much of the time and on the expiration of the three-year term he veteranized and served for a time with the First Veteran Regiment of the United States Engineers. He was also on detached duty for a time and did valuable work for his country by building pontoon bridges, over which the army was transported. With an honorable record for loyalty and faithfulness he returned to his home when the war was over and the country no longer needed his services.

Mr. Griffin has since resided in Brown county and has been actively interested in its upbuilding and development. He married Mrs. Loey Rounds, who was born in Indiana and bore the maiden name of Terrill. She had nine children by her first marriage and by her second union had one son, Charles Griffin, who lives on a farm in Atchison county, Kansas, near Muscotah. The mother, who was a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal church, died in May, 1896. On the 10th of June, 1897, Mr. Griffin was again married, his second union being with Mrs. Molly Seymour, a widow of Rev. R. H. Seymour, who was a gallant officer in the civil war and a well known pioneer preacher in Kansas. Mrs. Griffin was born in New Albany, Indiana, a daughter of S. C. Ramsey, also one of the loyal defenders of the Union during the civil war. He now lives in Des Moines, Iowa. but the mother has passed away, having died in Fremont county, Iowa, in November, 1880. Mrs. Griffin was reared in the Hawkeye state and acquired her education in its public schools. When she had attained to womanhood she gave her hand in marriage to Thomas Simpson, by whom she had two children: Mrs. Lotta McGinnis, of Powhattan, Kansas; and George, of Joplin, Missouri. At Alma, Kansas, Mrs. Simpson became the wife of Rev. R. H. Seymour, a minister of the Methodist Episcopal church, and to them were born two children, -- Bessie May and Horatio; but the latter is now deceased. The father died April 27, 1885, in Sumner county, Kansas, since which time Mrs. Seymour has become the wife of Mr. Griffin. They own and occupy a good farm of forty acres in Hiawatha township, Brown county. The place is improved with a good residence, an orchard, substantial outbuildings and all the accessories of a model farm. Both Mr. and Mrs. Griffin are members of the Methodist church, and the former is a Republican in politics. They enjoy the high regard of many friends, being both widely and favorably known in the community.