Louis Z. Foerster (1836 - post-1905) was born in Wellesly Township, Waterloo County, Ontario, to Ludwig and Margaret Foerster, who immigrated from Baden, Germany, shortly before Louis' birth. One of ten children, Louis practiced carpentry for some time in Canada before moving to Ypsilanti, where he purchased the Grove Brewery and Bottling Company with his brother Adam. In 1860, Louis married (accounts vary) Margaret or Augusta Loeffler, and had a son Jacob (Hattie Kimmel) with her; after her death in 1865, he married Rosanna Smith, and the couple had six further children: Louis K. (Mary Schade), Anna (wid. Adam Schaner), Albert (Emma Fuller), Lillian, Leopold (Mary Peters), and Clara (Mrs. E. E. Weber). Beakes says of Foerster that he, "has always been a democrat, but is without aspiration for office, preferring to give his time and attention to his business affairs."

Foerster's Brewery

(Perhaps refactor to move some of the structure/business information to the brewery page.)

After Adam departed the partnership, Louis took on Herman Hardinghaus as a partner for a time, before Hardinghaus moved to Ann Arbor to take over the Northern Brewery, then added several of his sons to the business. In the late 1870s, sales were 2,000-2,500 barrels a year, growing to 4,000-5,000 in 1881. By 1887, business had grown to the point that the original frame structure was replaced with a three-story brick building, with additional buildings added later. Foerster spent a time in Chicago in 1892, receiving Masters level education at the American Brewing Academy there. Various German styles were produced by the brewery, including a pilsener, bavarian, and bock; by 1905, Foerster's "Gold Band Export" was sold throughout Michigan.