I think you must not be checking this forum anymore, since your original post was so long ago.In case you ever get back here, I wanted to let you know that since I first responded I've done considerable research on our common Griffin ancestor and have a lot I can tell you about him.
John T. Griffin was born in 1839 in New York.He was a carpenter and ship builder who was raised in New York and moved, as an adult, to the Detroit area.He was married at least three times.His first wife, Ellen Pearsall, was born about 1843 in New York.She died before 1894 in the Detroit area and was the mother of your ancestor Ella May Griffin (along with Ella's siblings, Howard, Clarence, Milton and Harry).His second wife was my ancestor, Anne Amelia Dickson. They were married in 1894 in Sandwich, Ontario, Canada (near Detroit) and Annie filed for divorce nine months later. John and Annie had one child, George. John's last wife was Elizabeth Rice.They had no children.
John's father was Thomas Griffin.His mother's name has been variously reported to be Ella and Eliza, with her maiden name being either Carter or Carpenter.I'm still trying to get to the bottom of this.
Anyway, I have lots more info I can share about the family and their descendants.You can reach me through genforum or at eireann3(at)gmail.com
(Other families associated with John Griffin: Nix, Palmer, Opel, Edwards, Tatter)