In 1840, the first city government of Griffin was founded by General Lewis Lawrence Griffin, and was authorized in 1843 when the General Assembly of Georgia granted it a charter. The charter was accepted locally in 1844 and the first municipal government was established in 1845.
This new municipal government consisted of a Board of Commissioners with Major Henry Moor, an attorney, acting as chairman. After serving later as mayor, Major Moore, with William Dewberry, represented Spalding County at the Secession Convention where both men voted to secede from the Union.
The form of government changed in 1850 to Mayor and City Council with Alexander Moore designated as the first mayor of Griffin. This form of government was followed until December 10, 1918 with J. Woods Hammond being the last mayor.
At that time, Griffin inaugurated a three member commission with one member serving as chairman and providing for a city manager to be employed by the Board of Commissioners. The first city commission was composed of J. W. Gresham, Chairman, R. F. Strickland, Vice-Chairman, and B. B. Brown, Commissioner. The first City of Griffin City Manager was E. P. Bridges.