Griffith Family History & Genealogy

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  • Charles 1.6%
  • Thomas 1.3%
  • George 1.3%
  • David 0.9%
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  • Joseph 0.8%
  • Edward 0.8%
  • Donald 0.7%
  • Elizabeth 0.7%
  • Walter 0.6%
  • Helen 0.6%
  • Harry 0.6%
  • Dorothy 0.6%
  • Ruth 0.5%

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Evelynne Ritter My brother and I were fortunenate enough to be raised by my maternal grandparents. When our Mom was widowed at age 31, she returned to California from Georgia, where our Dad was staioned, so that our grandparents could help out.

Gramps was Marion Francis Logan, son of James Franklin "Frank" and Mary Harrison Oliver "Mollie" Logan. Marion was born on August 12, 1887 in a prairie sod house near Smith Center, Smith Co, KS. When he was about 5 the family moved to Mingo Kansas in Thomas County, near Colby. There his 4 younger brothers and sisters were born. One brother, John Baker Logan died at age 2 after ingesting lye. In August of 1895 Mollie Logan died from Typhoid Fever; Frank Logan would never marry again. Their eldest daughter Jessie Gay Logan took over her mothers duties and cared for Frank until his death in 1928.

At age 16 Marion left home with less than four years of schooling. He would remain a bachelor until age 32 when he would marry a young Iowa lady who he had only seen in a photograph carried by a friend.

Grandma was Merle Evelyn "Meg" Griffith eldest daughter of Abraham Lincoln and Ora Jane Beals Griffith. Meg was born on September 7, 1893 in College Springs, Page County, Iowa; community of @800. The Griffith family were staunch members of the Society of Friends community in SW Iowa, their children raised to be educators, all four sons and five daughters would have college educations; Meg graduating with a degree in education and one in music from the College Springs college.

Where Marion was a free spirit of the perpetual bachelor, Meg was a young woman her strong independent will would well have been refered to as that of a "Woman Suffergete" had the phrase been in use in that early part of the 19teens (1911-1920 period).

Meg knew her mind and was capeable of voicing her opinion without fear of being ridiculed. A photo taken of Meg and her best friend Stella (more about Stella in a moment) has both "young ladies" smiling nicely for the photographer who may have well been another friend because both "ladies" are dressed in only lace negligees, lace caps, their shoulders and lower parts of their limbs (aka "legs"), knees and ankles bared to the cameras eye. Photo taken @1916!!

In 1916 the United States began sending volunteers to Great Britian and France to help fight the Germans at the end of WWI. The US would not offically enter the war until late in 1917. In 1918 marion Logan was drafted and sent to France as part of the US Armys Expedetionary Forces into the Rhineland. Marion was part of an Army machinegun squad of 5 other men, amoung them was Stella's brother (we are still attempting to verify the family name and her brothers name from Gramps Army log). The brother had also known the Griffith family and was friend with the Griffith brothers, as such he carried a photo of the Griffith sisters which Meg had given him as a good luck charm so that he wouldn't be lonely while in the trenches.

I don't recall when Gramps was first shown that photo, regardless, what I do know is that as soon as he set his eyes on Meg Griffith's face he was a lost man, his bachelor days numbered.

Throughout the rest of the war Marion would keep asking to see the photo of the "Griffith girls". Wether he was looking at all of them, or if he even noticed the younger sisters, it was Meg Griffith he inquired about therough Stellas sister and from there to Meg. If there had been any doubt about Marion remaining a bachelor, it was completely erased when he returned to Kansas after the war and sent a photo of himself to Meg through Stellas brother.

In early April 1919, Marion Logan stepped off the train at College Springs Station in Iowa. There to meet him was Stella, Blanche Griffith; Meg's next younger sister; and Meg. The station was busy with pedestrian and wagon traffic; typical of a farm day. That there was a few more towns folk didn't seem to matter to Meg for as soon as Marion Francis Logan stepped off the train and onto the platform she commeneted in a clear enough voice "That's the man I'm going to marry!" .

On August 28, 1919, in College Springs, Marion F. Logan and Merle E. Griffith were united in matrimony. A close look of their wedding photo shows Meg beaming from ear to ear leaning slightly forward as she appears to speak to a friend or family member off camera.

Marion F. Logan, WWI veteran who survived a round from a German machine gun; which went through and through barely missing his spine and leaving a hole in his back @12"+ across; stands as if petrified, a look of pure shock in his eyes.

Marion overcame his "shell-shock" at being married and together he and "his Meg" would enjoy 46 years together, raise 2 daughters; Geraldine and Beverlee; have five Grandchildren and 11 G-Grandchildren; five of who Marion was able to get to know very well.

In 1976 Marion began dictating his autobiography onto audio tape. Copies were given to all of his grandchildren along with copies of family photos that go back to the early 1800's and the beginning of photography. He was able to finish the tapes and add some personal bits with his G-Grandchildren whom he spoiled a great deal.

On October 23, 1962 Meg Logan died from complications of Diabetes and Cancer. Marion remained a bachelor having married one "great lady" has he said, it would be impossible to find another like "His Meg".

On August 7, 1979 Marion Francis Logan died peacefully in his sleep in his home in Midway City, California. It was only 5 days from his 92nd birthday. In the end he had remained the independent gentleman that most folks in his town grew to know and respect. He had no care giver, no nurse, just a housekeeper that came every other week and a young man he hired through the local HS to help with the yard work.

When his daughter Geraldine found him he had a smile on his face. His grandchildren and G-Grandchildren do not doubt that "his Meg" had returned to take him home with her.
Nov 03, 2008 · Reply