Today I received this inquiry:
I spent an hour or so going through the Shoal Lake history books and the related material I’ve collected over the years, scanned a few things and sent Susan the following reply:
Thanks for your inquiry. I set the research hounds loose and found some great stuff for you.
Shoal Lake’s major history book, Ripples on the Lake Volume One, published in 1984, has this listing written by Marjorie who is also pictured:
Ripples… also has this picture taken in 1907 of South Railroad that shows the Eakins & Griffin Hardware, third from left with pole in front of store:
- Quality Hill, as described by Marjorie, was in the northwest corner of SL, north of the tracks. The Griffins lived at the corner of Birtle St. and North Railway Ave. During my time in SL in the late 1950s and 1960s I never heard the term Quality Hill. It had dissolved into the mists of time although a few other small towns in Manitoba did have areas they called Quality Hill, self-described by those with wealth. His business partner, Eakins, also lived on Birtle St.
- The earliest reference to Griffins in Manitoba Henderson’s Directories is 1904 when the listing says: Eakins (W. J.) & Griffin (W. J.), hardware and implements. In 1906 they have added tinsmiths and undertakers to their services.
- The earliest record of telephones for the Griffins is in 1909 when the hardware store number on Station Road is 76, Griffin’s home number is 48.
- The Narrows, where Crawford drowned in 1919, is at the south end of Shoal Lake, about 5 miles from town, before the lake links with Cooks Lake.
- There are no Griffins buried in any of SL’s cemeteries. Possibly Crawford was buried in Hamiota Cemetery.
- Hamiota, where the family moved, is 18 miles south of SL.