Joseph lived in Hartlepool. He entered the war in France on the 21st July 1915. He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal "For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. When a number of men were killed or wounded near his dressing station, he went out eight times into heavily shelled areas and on each occasion brought back a wounded man. His dressing station was eventually struck by a shell, but he continued at his work of tending the wounded and evacuating them to a place of safety with splendid devotion and disregard of personal danger, until the station had to be abandoned on account of heavy shell fire."