DeSoto Parish Louisiana

"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the state of Louisiana
and to the motto for which it stands:
A state, under God, united in purpose and ideals,
confident that justice shall prevail for all of those abiding here."


William J. Griffith

contributed by Gay Griffith Mean

from Henry Chambers History of Louisiana Vol. III

William J Griffith grew up on the home farm and remained there to the age of twenty-one, getting his education in local schools. Then, contrary to Greeley's advice, he went east instead of west, seeing out some relatives who lived at Crenshaw, near Montgomery, Alabama.

He spent ten years as a farmer in that locality and after returning to Louisiana, farmed in this state for two years. Since then he has been a manufacturer and contractor of railroadtimbers and shingles. For two years the center of his operations was at Oxford, in De SotoParish. For twenty-three years his home has been in or near Mansfield, and at present he resides on Jefferson Highway, three miles north of that city, in one of the most beautiful spots along the highway. The W J Griffith Company has operated on an extensive scale, frequently buying large tracts of standing timber and converting it into railroad ties, shingles, and other products. Mr. Griffith in 1886 married Lula Webster, of De Soto Parish. She died one year after the birth of her only daughter, who is now Theresa Parnell of Alexandria. In 1893, Mr. Griffith married Elizabeth Bailey. She is the mother of eight sons and seven daughters and all but one of this large family of fifteen are still living and all have been given exceptional educational advantages. The sons are all associated with their father in business. The son John C. has a service record of eighteen months during the World War, being with the Twentieth Engineers in France, near the Switzerland border, where he operated sawmills for military purposes. Mr. Griffith is President of the W J Griffith Company., Inc., while his son L B is secretary-treasurer, and his son John vice-president and in charge of mill operations. Mr. Griffith is a Methodist, and he and these two sons are thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Masons.



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