CHARLES W. SMITH, one of the leading grocers of Gillespie and a wide-awake and enterprising young business man, established business in this line in the autumn of 1882, as a member of the firm of Ahrens & Smith. This partnership continued for a year, when Mr. Ahrens sold out, our subject becoming sole proprietor and under his able management the business has thrived. He carries a full and complete line of staple and fancy groceries, glass, queensware and provisions and has a good trade, thereby securing an excellent income. He has been a close observer, thus having learned the wants and wishes of the public. Earnestly desiring to please his customers he supplies them with a fine line of goods, in manner is genial and pleasant and all of his business dealings are characterized by fairness.
Mr. Smith has spent his entire life in this county, his birth having occurred in Gillespie Township, October 13, 1855. He is the eldest child of Weye G. Schmidt, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this volume. Upon his father's farm the days of his boyhood and youth were passed, he aiding in the cultivation of the land during the summer months, while in the winter season he attended the district schools of the neighborhood, where his education was acquired. As a helpmate on life's journey he chose Miss Minnie Mohlmann, who was born in Germany, in May, 1861, and when a child came with her parents to this country, the family settling in Macoupin County, Ill., where the death of her mother occurred. Mr. Mohlmann subsequently removed to Piatt County, Neb., where he is now engaged in farming.
By the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, three children have been born but only Annie is now living. Christina and William both died of scarlet fever in 1890. The parents are members of the Lutheran Church, to the support of which they contribute liberally of their means and they are numbered among the leading citizens of Gillespie, where they have a pleasant home, the abode of hospitality, and are surrounded by a wide circle of friends and acquaintances who esteem them highly. In politics, Mr. Smith is a Democrat, having supported that party since he attained his majority. He manifests a commendable interest in all that pertains to the upbuilding and welfare of the community, identifies himself with its best enterprises and well deserves to be mentioned among the honored pioneers and best citizens of his native county.