Cramahe Archives Digital Collection
Photograph of Frank Griffis and an unidentified man standing in front of W. F. Griffis Drug Store, King Street East, Colborne
Media Type
Item Type
Lantern slides
This lantern slide was made from a glass negative - 19gp

See the publication - How Firm a Foundation: A History of the Township of Cramahe and the Village of Colborne in Cramahe's Digital Archives (3bk), p. 134 for a 1920s photo of the interior of the Griffis Drug Store, identifying Frank Griffis, and on p.151: ""... at No. 3 King St. East, was Griffis Drug Store..." This business was founded by Wm. C. Griffis in 1874 (just two years after the building was erected) as the "Colborne Drug Store" but was known in the early 1900s as the "apothecary hall." In 1908, Wm. C. died and his son, Wm. Frank took over its management. In 1910 it became the third Rexall drug store in Canada. Frank Griffis ran Griffis Drug Store until his retirement in 1945 and his son, Wm. C "Bill" Griffis became the third generation of the family to run the business. When he sold it to Bert Downey in 1970, it had been in the Griffis family for 96 years."

A print of this glass negative was found in a photo album entitled Colborne 125th Anniversary Committee. Written on inside front cover of this: Reproductions of glass negatives and positives of Colborne, Ontario's past - early 1900's - belonging to Arnold Warren and the Wm. C. Griffis family. Developed by Wm. Bennett (cousin of Joan & Harold Harnden under the auspices of the 125th Anniversary Committee celebrating Colborne's 125th Birthday 1859-1984.
The photo album was unstable and the prints were removed and are now located in a print storage box.

William Church Griffis
ID: I1550
Name: William Church Griffis
Given Name: William Church
Surname: Griffis
Sex: M
_UID: 543A701558C44768B924FE05AB329D5C947A
Change Date: 29 JUN 2013

He ran the Griffis Drug Store in Colborne which he founded about 1872. His son Frank ran it next and then Frank's son, Bill. It was located at No. 3 King Street. When Bill sold it, it had been Griffis Drug Store for 98 years.

1851/2 Census Records, Lennox & Addington Counties, Ontario, Film C11735, Hamilton Public Library: 201 - Fredericksburg Tp., Part 1, pg. 15, William Griffis, Age 1, born Canada West. Listed with his parents & siblings.

1861 Census Records, Northumberland County, Ontario, Film C1054, Hamilton Public Library: 264 - Cramahe Tp., Dist. 1, pg. 5, William Griffis, Age 9, born Upper Canada, Religion Wesleyan Methodist. Listed with his parents & siblings.

1881 Census Records, Northumberland County, Ontario, Film C13239, Hamilton Public Library: B - Colborne Town, pg. 6, line 4, William C. Griffis, Age 28, born Ontario, Religion C. Methodist, Origin Welch, Druggist; Mary E., Age 27, born England, Religion C. Methodist, Origin English; Arthur H., Age 3, born Ontario; William F., Age 1, born Ontario; Stephen Griffis, Age 22, born Ontario, Religion C. Methodist, Origin Welch, Merchant.

1891 Census Records, Norhumberland County, Ontario, Film T6356, Hamilton Public Library: 98 - Northumberland County East, D - Colborne Town, pg. 3, line 24, W.C. Griffis, Age 39, born Ontario, Father born Ont., Mother born Ont., Religion Methodist, Druggist; M.E. Griffis, Age 38, born England, parents born England, Religion Methodist; pg. 4, A. H. Griffis (male), Age 13, born Ontario; F.W. Griffis (male), Age 11, born Ontario; C.E. Griffis (male), Age 9, born Ontario; M.E.G. Griffis (female), Age 2, born Ontario; Sarah Callahack?, Age 25, born Ontario, parents born Ireland, Religion Church of England, General Servant.

1901 Census of Canada District: ON NORTHUMBERLAND (East/Est) (#95) Subdistrict: Colborne (Village) D-1 Page 2
2 38 22 Griffis William C M Head M Jan 3 1852 49
2 39 22 Griffis Mary E. F Wife M Feb 7 1853 48
2 40 22 Griffis Arthur H. M Son S Jan 7 1878 23
2 41 22 Griffis Frank W. M Son S Feb 11 1880 21
2 42 22 Griffis Clarence E. M Son S Jun 3 1882 18
2 43 22 Griffis Lilian G. F Daughter S Apr 24 1889 11
2 44 22 Griffis Fredrick L. M Son S Apr 9 1891 9

Ontario Death Register #029796 - Northumberland County, Colborne, Wm. Church Griffis, male, January 2, 1906, 54, Church St., Druggist, married, born Canada, Pneumonia dyspnoea 1 yr. duration, Methodist, informant- S.J. Tucker, registered Jan. 3, 1906.

Tombstone - Union Cemetery - Colborne, ON - William C. Griffis Born 1852 Died 1906 His Wife Mary Elizabeth Hatton Born 1853 Died 1951, Grace Griffis Born 1889 Died 1974

Birth: 3 JAN 1852 in Ontario, Canada
Death: 2 JAN 1906 in Colborne, Cramahe Tp., Northumberland County, Ontario, Canada
Burial: Colborne Union Cemetery, Colborne, Cramahe Tp., Northumberland County, Ontario, Canada
Date of Original
Local identifier
Language of Item
Geographic Coverage
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.00012 Longitude: -77.8828
Copyright Statement
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to Canadian law. No restrictions on use.
Copyright Holder
Copyright, public domain: Cramahe Township Public Library owns the rights to the archival copy of the digital image.
Cramahe Township Public Library
Emailcramlib@cramahetownship.caWWW address
Agency street/mail address
6 King Street West
PO Box 190
Colborne, ON K0K 1S0
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Photograph of Frank Griffis and an unidentified man standing in front of W. F. Griffis Drug Store, King Street East, Colborne