(*Portrait used with permission from Michael Sullís Spencerian Script and Ornamental Penmanship, Volume I.)

JS Griffith

(1899-1980)

Taken from the May, 1918 issue of The Business Educator

John S. Griffith of Astoria, Oregon, was born in 1899, and in due course of time graduated in the Idaho Technical Institute of Pocatello. In this institution lie came under the inspiration and instruction of one of America's foremost penmen and teachers, Mr. T. Courtney.

He next attended the Zanerian, and also received instruction from T. B. Courtney and A. W. Kimpson. For some time he has been connected with Heald's Astoria Business College, and is now engaged in Auditing work.

Mr. Griffith is a young mail of splendid personality and considerably above the average in size. He writes quite a remarkable business and professional hand, combining to a large degree, accuracy, grace, strength, and freedom. We hope some of these times to favor our readers with some of his penmanship, either professional or business.

Additional information from IAMPETHís The Penmanís News Letter, Volume 13, Number 3, January 1980:

It is with deep regret that I must announce the death of a great MASTER PENMAN, JOHN S. GRIFFITH on April 26, 1980. Mr. Griffith and his lovely wife, Rose, attended our convention at Cedar Rapids, Iowa where John delivered a fine speech on the "Importance of Handwriting in the Learning of Other Subjects. "He pointed out that we tend to remember what we write down and that children should be taught to write, not print, from the very beginning. Here is some information about John from an article provided by his wife:

"John S. Griffith became interested in Penmanship as a young student at the Academy of Idaho, Pocatello, Idaho, his home state. His teacher at the Academy, Theodore Courtney, was interested in fine Penmanship. In 1923, John went to the Zanerian College of Penmanship at Columbus, Ohio where he continued his study of Penmanship. His teachers, C. P. Zaner, Francis B. Courtney and Theodore Courtney were instrumental in arousing his interest in Penmanship and after years of sending his fine work to several Penmanship magazines, he was considered to be one of the foremost penmen in the country.

His interest in fine Penmanship and related subjects was his pride and joy and he had several scrapbooks containing many personally-writ ten letters. John served in the army during WWI, serving in U.S.A., France, Belgium and Germany. He received many citations and was given an honorable discharge with the rank of 'Captain.'

He was married June 9, 1918 to Rose Reagan of Reno, Nev. where he was teaching Accounting and allied subjects. He passed away of a heart attack on April 26, 1980 after a very active life."

Pictured below is a wonderful specimen of Ornamental alphabets.

Return to the Penmen Archives

Home