A native of Canada, but since his early childhood a resident of Rhode Island, Mr. Smith has been engaged in the retail drug business at Arctic under his own name for almost two decades. He is one of the leading business men of this town and is also actively identified with several other business enterprises, both in Arctic and in Providence. He enjoys a high professional standing, as indicated by his active participation in the work of several pharmaceutical organizations, is a member of several fraternal and social lodges and clubs, and is regarded as one of the substantial and public-spirited citizens of Arctic.
Joseph V. Smith was born at St. David, Province of Quebec, Canada, March 26, 1883, a son of the late William and Aglae (Plante) Smith. His father, also born at St. David, was engaged in farming until his death. His mother, who is deceased, was a native of Sorrell, Province of Quebec, Canada. Mr. Smith received his early education in the public schools of Coventry, Rhode Island, attended the LaSalle Academy, and eventually took up the study of pharmacy at the Rhode Island College of Pharmacy, graduating with the degree of Graduate in Pharmacy in 1906. In order to gain practical experience he worked for a number of years with druggists in Arctic, being connected with A. R. Vanesse for two years and with C. E. Chagnon for five years. In 1911 he established a drug business of his own in Arctic. The J. V. Smith Drug Company, of which he is sole proprietor, is the largest drug store in Kent County. Mr. Smith is a member of the National Association of Retail Druggists, and of the Rhode Island Pharmaceutical Association, being prominently active as a member of the latter’s executive committee. He is vice-president of the Southern New England Rexall Club, and a member of the Pawtuxet Valley Board of Trade. Other organizations, in which Mr. Smith maintains membership, include the following: J. P. Gibson Council, Knights of Columbus; Catholic Order of Foresters; and the West Warwick Country Club and West Warwick Lions Club, of both of which he is a governor. Though Mr. Smith’s energy and time have always been chiefly devoted to his business, he has been interested for a number of years in several other enterprises. He is president of the Couto, Kernan & Smith Realty Corporation, West Warwick; secretary of the Teller Optical Company; and a director of the Providence Wholesale Drug Company. In politics he is an independent, and his religious affiliation is with St. John the Baptist’s Roman Catholic Church. He finds his recreation chiefly in golf.
Mr. Smith married, in 1909, Ernestine M. Tellier, a native of St. Gabriel, Province of Quebec, Canada. Mr. and Mrs. Smith are the parents of four children: Floriane M., Robert M., Rodrigue M. and Myra M.
Source: Carroll, Charles. Rhode Island: Three Centuries of Democracy, vol 3 of 4. New York: Lewis historical Pub. Co., 1932.