Walter Clifford Sadler (d. 1959) was a professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Michigan. He served two terms as mayor of Ann Arbor, from 1937 to 1941, and was elected unopposed in 1939.

His book publications included The specifications and law on engineering works, Legal Aspects of Engineering, The proposed relocation of railroad facilities in Richmond, California, Industrial law, and Selected cases on partnership.

Sadler was mayor when the Ann Arbor Bus Depot on Huron Street was opened on September 5, 1940. [1] [2] Of the depot, he said that its opening was "an expression of confidence in the community and its progress." The mayor voted against the installation of parking meters in 1937, but city council approved the expense ($15,000). [3]



Walter C. Sadler

Regents' Proceedings 1072

The sudden death of Professor Walter Clifford Sadler, of the Department of Civil Engineering, on October 13, 1959, at the age of sixty-eight years, is mourned by the University community and by the entire Ann Arbor area.

Professor Sadler's preparation for his teaching career was full and various. After graduating from the University of Illinois in 1913, he worked on construction and design with the Great Northern Railway, served in France as an officer in the Army Engineers, earned a master's degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and engaged in private engineering practice. He joined the engineering faculty as Assistant Professor in 1925, and in 1927 enrolled in the Law School, earning a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1930.

This versatile background enabled him to contribute significantly to the literature of industrial law as well as of civil engineering and to advise municipalities and private agencies on problems in both of these areas. Drawing on his varied experience and often using his own texts, he was a superior teacher; his interest in his students was deep and lasting. The University appointed him Associate Professor in 1933 and Professor in 1941.

His interest in civic affairs drew him, meanwhile, into local government. He was elected to the City Council in 1933, became president of the Council in 1935 and served for two successive terms, from 1937 to 1941, as Mayor of Ann Arbor. In 1941, he returned to active military duty, serving first as major, later as Lieutenant Colonel, in the Army Corps of Engineers. The Army awarded him a commendation medal in 1946 and a reserve colonelcy in 1953. The passing of a devoted teacher and able colleague saddens his students and his fellows on the engineering faculty. His city will long remember him as a civic leader.

The Regents of the University join in the sorrow, which Professor Sadler's death has brought to his many colleagues and friends, and express to his family their heartfelt sympathy.

Regents’ Proceedings, October 1959, Page 1072