Walter Daniel Sayle (10 September, 1860-5 September 1941) was a prominent industrialist affiliated with several successful businesses, including the Cleveland Punch and Shear Works. A native Clevelander, Sayle was one of six children born to Thomas Henry Sayle and Jane Clark. Sayle graduated from Central High School in 1880. He married Jessie Chichester in 1884; they had three children (Flora Mary, Walter Chichester, and Harold Clark).
After completing High School, Sayle briefly flirted with the idea of a legal career before settling on business. He spent several years working at the Ohio Grind Stone Company, eventually becoming head of the accounting department in the mid 1880s. His rise at the Ohio Grind Stone Company coincided with his involvement in the establishment of the East End Savings Bank, which he directed until its merger with the CLEVELAND TRUST COMPANY in 1905. In 1901, Sayle served as secretary of the Penton Publishing Company (see PENTON MEDIA), which published several business journals including the Marine Review, the Iron Trade Review , and the Foundry.
Sayle's most important business accomplishments were in the area of manufacturing. In 1890, he helped start the Cleveland Punch and Shear Works, a prosperous firm whose shears and punches were used widely throughout the nation. By the time of his death in 1941, Sayle headed several other companies, including the City Foundry, the Cleveland Crane and Engineering works, and the Kenton-based Ohio Machine Tool Company. In June 1909, Sayle joined with other well-known Cleveland businessmen and bankers on the executive committee of the Cleveland Industrial Exposition. Sayle was also a national figure in the anti-union "open-shop" movement. Between 1901 and 1906, he was active in the Cleveland Manufacturers Association, and in 1906, he gained nationwide attention when he was chosen to head the National Metal Trades Association (NMTA), a powerful employer association that lobbied politicians for pro-business legislation, broke strikes, and blacklisted trade union activists. During his year-long presidency, membership in the NMTA increased considerably, going from 523 in March 1906 to 755 in March 1907.
In addition to his professional responsibilities, Sayle was an avid hunter and traveler. He wrote two travel writing books, A Trip to the Rainbow Arch (1920), detailing his explorations in the Southwestern United States, and A Trip to the Land of Romance (1921), highlighting his Latin American adventures.