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GRIFFITH & GRIFFITH
Philadelphia, Chicago, London, Hamburg and
St. Petersburg, Russia

George W. Griffith was a major publisher who began as a canvasser for Underwood and Underwood which he left to form his own company. He became the publisher and distributor of views by H. L. Roberts (Roberts and Fellows), William H. Rau, and M. H. Zahner (Niagara Falls). Griffith also added to negative files. Eventually he had more than 10,000 titles, including mostly United States subjects, Japan, Palestine, Puerto Rico, and the Spanish-American War. Griffith also made boxed sets, but they are rare. To compete with the other major publishers, Griffith produced thousands of lithos. He also issued a black and white set of the San Francisco Earthquake both as lithographs and photo prints. The lithos are very common.

Griffith and Griffith appear to have issued three main sets of Yellowstone views.

The low number series are on tan regular mounts. The numbers range from #80 to at least #101. They are probably continuous. The one numbered “80 Golden Gate” is different from the rest. The title is over the photo and sides are different. Possibly a rare, early printing.

The 4000 series – these appear on either gray or tan mounts. Numbers range from 4450-4534. I suspect that they are continuous. Perhaps even a one hundred view set. This series definitely had a subset. Parenthesis next to the catalog number up to at least (41) have been seen. It is not known whether or not this subset is entirely of Yellowstone. The copyright date of 1901 appears on some views.

The 5000 series. Also on gray or tan mounts, this set has numbers from 5001-5019. It may be a subset of the larger 4000 series. Numbers are likely continuous and all of Yellowstone scenes. Copyright dates indicate multiple printings of both the 4000 series and the 5000 series.

A puzzling view: It is numbered 2793 Coming through the Golden Gate of the Yellowstone. I can’t place it in any of these sets, so it may be part of a United States set. However, there is an exact duplicate of this view, but with a Montgomery Ward & Co. label, and William H. Rau publisher. It seems that Rau used this view exclusive of Griffith & Griffith.


80 Golden Gate, Yellowstone Park.

This is the earliest type of Griffith & Griffith view. Notice the style of printing and William Rau labeled as "photographer" and not publisher. The scene is the traditional view at Golden Gate near Mammoth..


91 Yellowstone Park. Hell's Half Acre.

The more common low number series is pictured here. This were printed in large numbers and are still fairly common today. The hot spring view is actually the crater of Excelsior Geyser at Midway Geyser Basin.


Paul Rubinstein Collection

2793 Coming through the Golden Gate of the Yellowstone.

Griffith’s mysterious 2000 series. This numbering doesn’t appear to be associated with any other of his sets. This identical view was released by Montgomery Ward & Co. with their label. It shows a lone rider on horseback descending the Golden Gate Canyon road near Mammoth.


Paul Rubinstein Collection

4481. Upper Falls of the Yellowstone, Yellowstone Park.
Copyright 1901, by Geo. W. Griffith.

The 4000 series gray mounts are perhaps the most common of the company’s views. This scene issued in 1901 shows the Upper Falls from its base.


4469. Petrified Trees. Yellowstone Park.
Series of 1904, by George W. Griffith.

A later 4000 series gray mount view, here we see two men at a petrified tree near Tower Junction in northern Yellowstone.


4491. (41) Giant Geyser Cone, Yellowstone Park.
Series 1905 by Griffith & Griffith.

Still a third type of 4000 series view is this image. The parenthesis indicate its inclusion in one of Griffith’s boxed sets. The scene shows a young lady in her dated dress at the cone of Giant Geyser in the Upper Geyser Basin.


4484. Moonlight, Yellowstone River.
Copyright 1901, by Geo. W. Griffith.

This 4000 series tan mount view shows an evening scene on Yellowstone Lake. The location is probably near the outlet of Pelican Creek.


5009. Elephant Terrace, Yellowstone Park.
Copyright 1901, by Geo. W. Griffith.

The 5000 series came in gray or tan mounts as seen here. This image shows tourists at Elephant Terrace in the upper terraces of the Mammoth area.


GRIFFITH & GRIFFITH VIEWLIST


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