Lois M. Griffiths

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Lois M. Griffiths
1930 - 2016
LEWISTON - Lois M. Griffiths, a 58-year resident of Monmouth, died on Friday, March 11, 2016, in Lewiston, after sustaining a head injury in a fall. She had suffered from Parkinson's disease the past three years. She was 85.
Lois Marilyn Spofford was born on Sept. 5, 1930, in Hinckley, to Howard Coney Spofford and Dorothy Mabel Bailey Spofford. She attended schools in Hinckley, Auburn and Leeds, and graduated from Monmouth Academy in 1947 as valedictorian. Lois won a Pepsi-Cola Scholarship which enabled her to go to Bates College, the first of her family to attend college. She graduated from Bates in 1951 magna cum laude, with high honors in history.
Lois was married on July 18, 1948, to Arthur Morgan Griffiths. They began married life as students at Bates, and Lois was pregnant with her first child when she graduated in June of 1951. Following graduation, both Arthur and Lois taught at Limington Academy; then they moved to Newport, Waterville, and Auburn; then settled in Monmouth in 1958 after Arthur had been appointed news bureau director at Bates College.
Improving the 1810 Cape Cod house in Monmouth was a pleasant ongoing project for them. As a stay-at-home mother raising her four children, Lois kept active with gardening, canning, baking, and sewing. She studied drawing and painting through the Famous Artists correspondence course and exhibited at the first Portland Sidewalk Art Festival, selling several of her paintings over the years. Perhaps her most important painting was her copy of Harry Cochrane's "The Man on Horseback," commissioned of Lois by a Methodist church in the south.
With her children growing up, Lois went back to work, first picking apples at Highmoor Farm, typesetting and proofreading at Twin City Printery, then working as a reference assistant at Coram Library at Bates College.
In the new Ladd Library at Bates she worked with government documents, and later still Lois assisted with the cataloging and organization of materials at the Edmund Muskie Archives. A highlight of her work at the Archives came when she was introduced to the visiting President Jimmy Carter.
Arthur and Lois were ideal traveling companions, making frequent trips to the coast, going sailing on their schooner Antares, researching family history, and finding lost Maine cemeteries. They were among the founding members of the Arnold Expedition Historical Society and took part in that organization's 1975 Bicentennial re-enactment.
In later years they traveled many times to England, Wales and Scotland in quest of both genealogy and British history. Lois was a long-time member of the Richard III Society, maintaining Richard's innocence of the crimes of which he was accused, and she was gratified at the recent discovery and re-burial of Richard's body.
During World War II, along with her sister, Lois raised two acres of beans for a local cannery, using the proceeds to purchase a Victory bicycle. She also learned how to build a load of hay. Lois loved horseback riding, archery, swimming and hiking. In her 50s she hiked to the summits of Mt. Bigelow and Mt. Katahdin, Mts. Washington, Jefferson, Madison and Monroe, reaching also a secondary peak of Mt. Adams. An enthusiastic ice skater, Lois improved her technique with figure-skating lessons in 1995-1996. She sang soprano in the CODA Chorus for many years. She knew how to shoot and was known to threaten marauding woodchucks in her garden with her trusty .22 rifle.
Lois was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the Bates College Key. She was a proud alumna of Monmouth Academy and belonged to the Monmouth Museum. She subscribed to Time, National Geographic, The Smithsonian, and In Britain. She was a member of the New England Historical Genealogical Society. She and Arthur researched many branches of their families back to the 1600s and earlier. She was a lifelong Republican, proud of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Margaret Chase Smith. She became an ardent Red Sox fan with special admiration for Carl Yastrzemski and Jacoby Ellsbury.
Lois was predeceased by her infant brother, David Howard Spofford, in 1945, and by her husband Arthur in 2005.
She is survived by her four children: Thomas Griffiths and wife Margaret of Bloomington, Ill.; John Griffiths and wife Anne of Sterling, Va.; Linda Johnston and husband Terrence of Monmouth; and Carol Griffiths of Monmouth. She is also survived by four grandchildren: Jennifer Griffiths of Washington, D.C., Anne Griffiths of Richardson, Texas, and Christopher and Matthew Griffiths of Sterling, Va. Lois' two sisters survive her: Elaine Haines of Oakland, and Jean Martin and husband Byley of Manchester. Four nieces and one nephew also survive her, along with two cousins.
Many thanks to the staff at Central Maine Medical Center who took such good care of Lois during her final days and showed such kindness to family members. Messages of condolence may be sent to the family at: www.finleyfuneralhome.com
Visiting hours will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m, prior to the funeral services at 1 p.m., on Tuesday, March 15, at Bragdon-Finley Funeral Home, 707 Main St., Monmouth. Interment will be in the spring at Maple Ridge Cemetery, Hebron.

If desired, donations in
Lois' memory may be made to the
Monmouth Museum
P.O. Box 352
Monmouth, ME 04259, or:
Arnold Expedition Historical Society
60 Burnham Road
Scarborough, ME 04074

Funeral Home
Bragdon-Finley Funeral Home
707 Main St
Monmouth, ME 04259
(207) 933-4444
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Published in Central Maine on Mar. 13, 2016
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