Forderer Cornice Works was founded in San Francisco in 1875, approximately 10 years after the Civil War, by Joseph F. Forderer who was born in Baden-Baden Germany in 1850. He immigrated to Cincinnati, Ohio with his parents at an early age and quickly became skilled in metal roofing and cornice work. He came to Napa, California in his early 20's and secured the contract for manufacturing and installing the roofing and cornice work for the new Napa State Asylum. He fell in love with the area and decided to stay. By 1888 he employed 100 men and his company was incorporated in 1891. Through the ensuing years the company has remained a Forderer family business with shifting emphasis but always related to quality metal products for the building construction field. Today, the company's main pursuits are with distributing standard and detention metal doors and frames and hardware along with wood doors.