Born in Greencastle, Indiana, Griffith moved with his family, at age four, to the Dallas area where, as a youth, he studied with Frank Reaugh and accompanied him on one of his summer sketching caravans to West Texas. Griffith studied afterward at the St. Louis School for the Arts, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the National Academy of Design, New York. After a period in France, England, New Orleans, Mexico, and a return to Texas, he worked as a commercial artist for the Barnes Crosby Engraving Company of Chicago and New York. In 1922, he settled in Nashville, Indiana, where he was afterward associated with the Brown County art colony. He made occasional painting trips to Texas, as when he painted scenes in of downtown Dallas (1926) and when he painted in the Big Bend area and exhibited with the San Antonio Art League (1928). Griffith died in Franklin, Indiana.
Exhibitions: Art Institute of Chicago (1903-4, 1908-16, 1918-24); Annual Exhibition of the State Fair of Texas, Dallas (1910); Panama-Pacific International Exposition, San Francisco (1915 bronze medal); Art Association of New Orleans (1916-17); Palette and Chisel Club, Chicago (1921 medal); Hoosier Salon, Chicago (1921 gold medal, 1924-25 prizes, 1930 prize, 1938 prize, 1949 prize, 1953 prize); Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia (1921); Sesquicentennial International Exposition, Philadelphia (1926); Second International Exhibition of Modern Engravings, Florence (1927); Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (1927 one-man); Edgar B. Davis Competition, San Antonio (1928, 1929 prize); San Antonio Art League (1928); Fort Worth Museum of Art (1930 one-man); Brown County Art Association (1938 award); Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. (1943); National Academy of Design, New York (1943); National Collection of Fine Arts, Washington, D.C. (1945); Indianapolis Museum of Arts (1994).