Griffin was a Washington DC newspaperman and avid Twain collector. In 1967, he donated his collection of over 1200 items relating to Mark Twain to the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library. The collection primarily consists of various editions of Twain’s published works.
In the early 1930s, the Buffalo Public Library (a predecessor of the BECPL) began to build a unique collection of special English and foreign language editions of Huck Finn. Throughout the years, this collection has continued to grow. We now have over 220 significant English language editions and over 150 editions in more than 30 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and Spanish.
Twain was also an inventor. Included in this collection is an original, unique, and somewhat convoluted memory builder game he created based on the royal families of England. It is said that "by the time he stopped, the game looked like a cross between an income tax form and a table of logarithms." Novelties include Twain cigars and collectible plates.
he collection includes original Norman Rockwell lithographs (signed by the artist) from the 1940 edition of Huck Finn, as well as a collection of Barry Moser woodcuts created for the 100th anniversary Pennyroyal edition.