William Smith was owner and proprietor of the Central Roller Mills, Ida Grove, Ia. He succeeded Wilkinson & Smith in the milling business, this firm having succeeded Brown & Ream. Mr. Brown was the founder of the milling plant and erected the a two-story structure building in 1883. It was a buhrstone mill having a capacity of 40 barrels. In 1887 it was changed to a roller mill by Wilkinson & Smith and its capacity increased to 60 barrels per day. Mr. Smith then erected a new engine house, removed the old slide valve and replaced it with a Reynolds-Corliss engine. Three men were employed in the mill. The product brand names were “Ivory Patent,” “White Pearl,” and “Oasis.”
William Smith was born April 7, 1852 in Perry County, Pennsylvania. His parents were John and Sarah (Bauserman) Smith. He was raised on a farm and came West when 25 years old. He first located in Sac County, then Battle Creek in Ida County, and then became the owner of the Central Roller Mills at Ida Grove.
He married Matilda J. Shearer of Dellville, Pa. in January 1883. They had 5 children: Samuel M., Sarah E., William W., and Jennie B, and Emily H.