Joseph Schauer was born in Hungary on 15 June 1885, to John Schauer and Katherine Kress. He immigrated to the United States in 1903 (coincidentally, the same year as his future wife). Joseph was married by a Justice of the Peace on 17 February 1917, to Clara Bambach. Just over a year later, while living in Cincinnati, Ohio, they had Frances Clara, their first child. Not long thereafter, the family moved to Capac, Michigan, where their second child, AnnaBell, was born in 1919.

At the behest of relatives of Joseph then living in the city of St. Louis, Missouri, the family moved to the Hyde Park neighborhood of that city, settling in a three room, second floor flat at the rear of 1411 Salisbury Street, one of many such rear flats along that block. (Ironically, the relatives that encouraged them to come to St. Louis then moved back to Ohio). They used an outhouse located in the yard between their building and the one fronting on Salisbury. To bathe, they filled a tub by hand. A toilet was later added inside the flat, but only after the late 1940s did the landlord have a shower installed.

The couple attended mass at Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church, located at 3519 N. 14th Street, which was just a block south of their residence. Joseph obtained a job as a handyman/janitor at that church and was known to occasionally visit the church’s school to ask for the help of some of the “bigger boys” with his tasks. He was a gentle, kind-hearted man who did a wonderful job in supporting and helping to raise his two daughters. His daughter Frances recalled only one instance when he became upset with her, when she went to a movie at the neighborhood theater rather than attend a religious service at Holy Trinity.

His daughters moved out upon their marriages. Frances married John Joyce Kleaver Jr. in 1947 and AnnaBell married Anthony Louis Spezia the following year. His wife, Clara, began working evenings as a cleaning lady at one of the downtown office buildings.

Joseph died in the Salisbury flat on 9 April 1965, of myocardial failure, coronary insufficiency, and general arteriosclerosis. He was buried in Calvary Cemetery, where he was joined by his wife upon her death on 30 July 1983.

Written by Patrick Kleaver
April 2022
© 2023, St. Louis Genealogical Society

Joseph and Clara Schauer
Joseph and Clara Schauer
Photo in the collection of Patrick Kleaver
Used with permission

Return to St. Louis City/County Biographies.

Last Modified: 18-Jul-2023 13:06