Our Town Stettler: Grigg, part of Stettler’s first council

Grigg came to Stettler in 1906

By Carson Ellis For the Independent

John Phillip Grigg was a community-minded person for the bulk of his life. His long-lasting political career stretched for most of his life, both in Ontario and Alberta.

Born in Mount Brydges, Ontario, in 185, at 31 years old, he was elected as a member of the Caradoc Township council. By 1894, he was elected to the position of second deputy reeve of the council, and two years later he was elected as first deputy reeve. Around that time, he also held a seat on the county council, which was comprised of 46 members. After he was re-elected to the county council, he sat as a member for the following six years. Mr. Grigg was made Warden of the county in 1903, a position that made him the head of the county government. For many county governments in the province, the choice of Warden is decided by members of the council and is regarded as a very prominent position.

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In 1906 Grigg moved to Stettler and was quickly appointed to the first town council. In 1909, he was elected as mayor and held the position of mayor in Stettler for three years. In the next election, he refused to be nominated.

When the municipal sub-district of Stettler was created, one of the positions that was required at the newly converted courthouse, was that of sheriff. The sheriff was the local representative of the Justice Department and had authority over various matters such as how the courthouse was run, and most aspects of its day-to-day operations. For most courthouses, especially ones in communities like Stettler, the position of sheriff was considered a rather important role and was often given to well-respected members of the community.

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John and his wife Alberta had a daughter named Elsie and a son named Moreley.

Although I don’t have very much on the Griggs. I did read an article about a fire that took place at his home one night while his wife and daughter were using gasoline to clean a couple of their dresses. At one point in the evening, the dish containing the gasoline caught fire. Mrs. Grigg attempted to cover the dish with a jacket, and took it outside when the jacket caught on the doorway, and the dish fell to the floor. Most of the family furniture was removed quickly from the home, and the fire was extinguished quickly, however, much of the kitchen was badly damaged.

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Mr. Grigg passed away in the Stettler hospital in October 1918 after suffering from Bright’s disease for some time. The local Masonic lodge officiated, and the body was interred at the Stettler Cemetery.

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