The town was first mentioned in 1454 and soon became property of the Gatavicius family. Krzysztof Gatavicius, thankful for his military achievements, built a church in 1618. The present church was built in 1875.
In 1999, coat of arms of Grinkiškis were approved by a presidential decree. The coat of arms depict a golden angel on one knee, who holds a silver lily with three blooms. The angel was borrowed from one of the two surviving crosses in town's cemetery, made by 19th-century dievdirbysVincas Svirskis. The lily, a symbol of purity and innocence, represents Blessed Virgin Mary – patron of the town and namesake of its church.