William Dixon Gray

You can read a biography of the engineer, William Dixon Gray.


New Century Mill

Standard Mill (St. Anthony Falls Historic District)

William Dixon Gray moved to Minneapolis in 1866, having worked both in milling and as a railroad engineer. He began working for Otis A. Pray, who had arrived in Minneapolis nine years earlier and operated a machine shop which manufactured equipment for flour mills. After working as a draftsman and engineer for Pray, Gray moved to Milwaukee in 1876 to become chief engineer at the Edward P. Allis Company. While at the Allis Company, Gray adapted a European design to develop the first successful milling system that utilized roller mills alone. This technology was first utilized by the Washburn C Mill and the Standard Mill, located on the west side of Saint Anthony Falls. Gray later incorporated this patented process in the design of many mills around the country, including the New Century Mill, Minneapolis’ first mill powered by coal-fired boilers rather than hydropower.

Updated: April 2015

Community Planning & Economic Development

Historic Preservation




Public Service Center
505 Fourth Ave. S., Room 320
Minneapolis, MN 55415