Joseph Lawrence Sauer was born in Cleveland, Ohio on March 19th, 1881, was married on July 29th, 1903 to Catherine Theresa Schloud. When the family barrel-making company failed, Joseph left Cleveland and looked for work in Minnesota and Wisconsin. He became an apprentice in a foundry and then moved to Detroit when he took a job at Dodge foundry. Joseph and Catherine had 6 children. Joseph died in Detroit on October 12th, 1946.