Santa Cruz County History - People



Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans
by Robert L. Nelson

GRIFFIN, JAMES (1845-1922)

Santa Cruz Sentinel (April 2, 1920)

Headstone of James Griffin
James Griffin
Old Holy Cross Cemetery

James Griffin Injured by Auto

James Griffin, one of the best known East Side residents, was struck by an auto yesterday and two of the wheels passed over Griffin as he lay on the ground. He was struck by the Ford car driven by Charles Pucha, a resident of Hall St.

Griffin and W.H. Achterberg, the driver for the Associated Oil Co. were in conversation at the corner of Seabright Av. and Hanover St. as Pucha approached. Griffin stepped aside to allow the car to pass and stumbled and fell. Achterberg jumped to his assistance and was struck by one of the fenders of the auto and knocked down.

Griffin is stiff and bruised, with one arm in a sling but on the job. Both arms are badly bruised.

Santa Cruz Evening News (April 12, 1922)

James Griffin, Veteran Contractor, Answers Final Call

Another figure in the older citizenship of Santa Cruz joined the silent majority of those who have passed into eternal sleep lately, when Jas. Griffin, veteran contracting brick mason and plasterer passed away at his home, 451 Soquel Avenue, last night. The death of Mr. Griffin marks the first bereavement in a family circle of thirteen, which included eleven children, all of whom were reared and educated in the schools here and rank as one of the best known families of the city.

Mr. Griffin was a New Yorker by birth, having been born in the Empire State. He drifted westward when a young man less than 30 years of age, first locating at Salinas and coming to Santa Cruz two years afterwards, where he had resided for a period of 48 years. As a workman he was a high class mechanic, and always associated himself with craftsmen that were capable of doing first class masonry, and these included the late Sam Winans and Edward Gilleran, the latter meeting death by being struck on the head by a flying brick at the time of the big powder mill explosion in 1898. Personally Mr. Griffin enjoyed a reputation for honesty and was a gentleman that had many friends who will find it hard to realize that he has passed away. For many years he has been a familiar figure on the East Side and those who know his characteristic good-naturedness always referred to him as Jim Griffin when indulging in social conversation with him.

He was a remarkably vigorous man for his age and never satisfied unless he had something to occupy his mind and attention. It was only lately that his health began to fail him to a marked degree.

As a veteran of the Civil War he served with the union army and was a member of Wallace Reynolds Post. G.A.R.

Besides the wife the following children survive him:
Mrs. Lena Rose, Oakland; Mrs. Blanche Rose, Ernest and George of Hollister; James, Fred and Jesse of Santa Cruz; Lorene, Adeline and Elizabeth of San Francisco, and Mrs. Pearl Kent of Palo Alto.

The remains are at the parlors of C.C. Chase.

Santa Cruz Sentinel (April 13, 1922)

DIED: GRIFFIN- In Santa Cruz April 11, James Griffin, native New York aged 78 years, 6 months and 12 days.

Santa Cruz Sentinel (April 14, 1922)

Funeral over James Griffin

Funeral services were held over the late James Griffin yesterday morning from Chase's undertaking parlors where many gathered for the service for the one known so well in this community.

Being a veteran of the Civil War the members of Wallace Reynolds post, G.A.R. attended in a body and participated in the services.

The coffin was covered and one end of the room was banked with flowers sent by friends.

Father P.J. O'Reilly of Holy Cross Church conducted the service and the hymns "Gathering Home," "Some Time We'll Understand" and Nearer My God to Thee" were sung by Mrs. Virginia Smith and Mrs. Mary Croop. The burial was at the Catholic cemetery.


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