Historical information

In 1879, James Griffiths established one of Australia’s first tea and coffee distribution companies at 30 Flinders St, Melbourne, which is now, occupied by the boutique Lindrum Hotel. Established with his brother John, recent immigrants from England, Griffiths occupied the highest position in the commercial world during their many years as distributors of tea, coffee, cocoa and other products throughout Victoria and Australia. The Griffiths brand was a guarantee for quality of product and service as it still is today. This extensive service was provided to customers via horse drawn carts serviced by rail from Melbourne.
As a spirited entrepreneur, Griffiths made his company a household name through his pioneering use of outdoor advertising by installing the infamous blue and white enamel “Griffiths Tea” promotional signs affixed to the railway boundary fences highlighting to travellers the distance to or from Melbourne, indicating so many “— miles to Griffiths Tea”. These signs, much sought after today, were well known through out the eastern states. Photographs have been published of a sign erected by a Digger in France during the First World War with the words “1100 miles to Griffiths Bros”.
Tragically, James and his wife Emily with friends died in a level rail crossing accident at Bayswater in 1925. Despite this unfortunate accident, Griffiths and its culture of innovation has survived as one of the few 100% Australian owned coffee roasters, with only three owners in 128 years.

Sign - Advertising - Griffiths Tea Sign - 30 Miles


Historic - Sign - Advertising - Griffiths Tea Sign - used along side of Victorian Railway lines and at Stations

Physical description

Sign - Advertising - Griffiths Tea Sign - 30 Miles
Griffiths Tea sign made of Enamel paint on metal sign

Inscriptions & markings

30 Miles to
Griffiths Tea Sign