Griffith was officially incorporated 11 years later on Nov. 19, 1904. Residents faced the task of moving from agriculture to a more urban setting at the dawn of the 20th century. The fledgling town boasted various industries, stores and shops. The young school system scored an "A" when Franklin School was built in 1911. It replaced Troy School, South School and North School, all of which were built in the late 1800s. As the 20th century progressed, it was joined by three other grade schools, the high and middle schools.
The first formal church was built in 1915 when the Methodists began worshiping at the corner of Lafayette and Columbia. It was joined in 1920 by the Hammond Christian Church at 231 N. Broad St. In 1928 St. Mary Parish opened its doors with a church/school combination on Broad Street.
And today's downtown sports a fresh street-scape, many stores and shops, a bike trail to replace some of those steel ribbons and — of course — that famous crossing with train traffic that has steamed across Broad for 162 years.