DENNISPORT — Elizabeth "Betty" (Grimsey) Griffin, 97, of Dennisport, died on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2009, at Eagle Pond Rehabilitation and Living Center in South Dennis.
She was the wife of the late Leon A. Griffin, who died in 1965.
Born in Newark, N.J., Mrs. Griffin was the daughter of the late William Edwin and Martha Marie (Geiger) Grimsey. She was a graduate of the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Art in Newark, where she won several design prizes and worked with the Newark Art Theatre, which later became the Paper Mill Playhouse, in Millburn, N.J.
Mrs. Griffin was a member of a group of watercolorists who met informally at the Montclair Museum with Ida Wells Stroud, that later evolved into the New Jersey Watercolor Society. She exhibited at the Newark Art Association, the Newark Art Club, The Kresge Gallery, The Chatham Art Association, and The Summit Art Association, in addition to many others including a state show at Convention Hall in Asbury Park.
Mrs. Griffin was associated with the Whelan Studios in New York City doing advertising, art and promotional work. She traveled for them during World War II, doing training work and as a supervisor throughout the west and south. She wrote training manuals and did radio interviews on portrait restoration.
She lived in Livingston, N.J., before moving to West Dennis in 1953, and to Dennisport in 1970. She worked for Whitney and Bassett Architects and Engineers in Hyannis and belonged to the Cape Cod Association of Land Surveyors and Professional Engineers.
Mrs. Griffin also worked with her late husband at The Griffins, Designers of Homes and continued the business for many years after his death. She worked with many builders on Cape Cod in developments as well as doing custom homes here and throughout the northeast. She also held a real estate brokers license.
She continued her watercolor studies here with Claude Croney and Foster Nystrom. She exhibited on Cape Cod and throughout Massachusetts. Her watercolors are in private homes and collections in this country and abroad. She also taught watercolor classes in adult education and private lessons.
Mrs. Griffin was instrumental in showing artwork outside of galleries on the Cape with an early display at the former Bass River Savings Bank office in what was then Angelo's Shopping Plaza in South Yarmouth, and at the former Hyannis Cooperative Bank in South Dennis.
A member and former deaconess at the First Baptist Church of West Harwich and Dennisport, Mrs. Griffin was also a member of the Artisans Guild of Cape Cod, the Yarmouth Art Guild, the Conservatory of Music and Arts, the Cape Cod Art Association, the Dennis Chamber of Commerce and the Dennis Historical Society.
Mrs. Griffin is survived by a niece, Barbara Crater of Kinnelon, N.J.; and five stepgrandchildren, Steve Griffin of Wooster, Ohio, Nancy Griffin Bergen of Montoursville, Pa., Donn Welton of Windham, Vt., and Lynn Welton Robinson and Mark Welton, both of Denver, Colo.
Funeral services will be private.
Memorial donations may be made to the First Baptist Church of West Harwich and Dennisport, Route 28, West Harwich, MA 02671.
This obituary was originally published in the Cape Cod Times.