Having entered the textile business in his native Scotland as a youth of some fifteen years, Mr. Battye has continued to be identified with the textile industry ever since. A resident of the United States since his seventeenth year, he has been connected with various important textile companies in New England for almost half a century. He has acquired an exceptionally thorough knowledge of all branches of the textile business, a fact which has enabled him to fill the various positions of responsibility which he has held from time to time with marked success. As general manager of one of the leading textile enterprises of Wakefield, he has been one of the city’s most prominent business executives for several years. He takes an active part in other phases of the community’s life and is greatly liked by all who have the privilege of knowing him.
William Battye was born at Tillocultry, Scotland, March 20, 1868, a son of the late George and Elizabeth (Moody) Battye. His father, who was born at Home Firth, England, likewise was connected with the textile industry, continuing this connection until his death. Mr. Battye s mother, who is now deceased, was a native of Tillocultry, Scotland. Mr. Battye was educated in the public schools of his native town and at an early age went to work in the local textile mill, continuing to be employed there until he was seventeen years of age. At that time he came to the United States and located at Harrisville, Rhode Island, where he resumed work in a textile mill. Next he was connected for fourteen years with the Ashaway Mills, Ashaway, Rhode Island, and then held the position of designer in a mill at Millbury, Massachusetts, for three years. From there he went to Hartland, Maine, where he worked as a designer and as assistant superintendent of a mill for eight years. Then, after spending one year as superintendent of the Merrimac Mills, at Lowell, Massachusetts, he came to Holden, Massachusetts, where he acted as superintendent of a large mill for eight years. The next two years Mr. Battye spent as superintendent with the Angus Park Manufacturing Company of Glastonbury, Connecticut, until, in 1924, he came to Wakefield, having been elected vice-president, a director, and general manager of the Wakefield Textile Company, Incorporated. In this position he continues to serve, being regarded as one of the successful business executives in the textile industry in Wakefield. He is a member of Olive Branch Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons; the Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and the Narragansett Country Club. In politics he is a supporter of the Republican party, while his religious affiliation is with the Baptist Church. He finds his recreation chiefly in golf. During the World War Mr. Battye, then a resident of Holden, Massachusetts, served as a member of that city’s fuel commission. During his residence there he also was a member of the board of directors of the Holden District Hospital.
Mr. Battye married, in 1898, Mabel A. Babcock, a native of Bradford, Rhode Island. Mr. and Mrs. Battye are the parents of one son, George Lewis Battye, a veteran of the World War, having enlisted April 28, 1918, and having served with the American Expeditionary Forces in France. He was assigned to Company F, 2d Engineers, 2d Division, participated in the St. Mihiel, Mont Blanc, Meuse-Argonne campaigns, and then spent seven months in Germany with the Army of Occupation. He received his honorable discharge from military service August 14, 1919.
Source: Carroll, Charles. Rhode Island: Three Centuries of Democracy, vol 3 of 4. New York: Lewis historical Pub. Co., 1932.