Our History

Father and son, Joseph Cicero and J.C. Williams, Jr. organized The Williams Company, Inc. in 1937. As we enter a new decade in the 21st century, our company has proved a mainstay in quality service in the machining industry.

Founder Joseph Cicero Williams moved to Bristol, Tennessee around 1910 to work for Enterprise-Black Diamond Company, a large Bristol, Virginia machine shop specializing in mining cars and tractor-trailer bodies. In 1937, Joseph Cicero and his son J.C. started The Williams Company, Inc. in Bristol, Virginia. The present and original 101 Vance Street machine complex was designed by Joseph Cicero and built by company employees.

The Williams Company, Inc. specialized in parts for textile and fibers industries. North American Rayon, American Bemberg, and Tennessee Eastman were major customers until World War II. During the war, the company made aircraft parts for Consolidated Vultee, Goodyear Aircraft, and Curtis Wright Aircraft. Additionally, The Williams Company, Inc. was also one of the first suppliers for The Manhattan Project in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Production continued also for the essential rayon tire and fiber industry until the end of the Korean War.

In the early 1950s, The Williams Company, Inc. started to manufacture trailer bodies, designed by Joseph Cicero, for the trucking industry, which provided lightweight, but strong bodies. They were sold primarily to local moving and trucking companies. A uniquely designed insulated milk truck was also designed by Joseph Cicero and was built by The Williams Company, Inc. for the Pet Milk Company. These products were discontinued in the late 1950s.

Joseph Cicero remained president and manager until the late 1950s until J.C. picked up where his father left off. J.C was instrumental in bringing Numerical Controlling Machining to the company around 1973. In 1971, Harry J. Williams followed his grandfather and father into the family business. Together, Harry and J.C. implemented Computer Numerical Controls (CNC) for shop machinery in 1979.  Current president and manager, Harry, graduated from the University of Virginia, receiving both Bachelors and Master’s degrees in Mechanical Engineering.  With 39 years of experience, Harry and other members of The Williams Company Inc. team, offer design consultation, manufacturing experience, and accurate and competitive pricing.