James M. Colby
Colby, James Metcalf Jr.
James Colby was born on April 13, 1883 in Big Rapids, Michigan son of James Metcalf Sr. and Anna (Marta) Colby. His family relocated to Wausau in 1896 when he attended local schools and graduated from the Senior High School in 1904. He then taught school in the Town of Stettin and also in the Plover-Easton area. He turned a high school hobby into a lifetime profession.
In 1909, he established the Northern Photo Company and started a career that lasted 47 years, remaining in business for nearly 55 years. It produced thousands of penny postcards before that market almost disappeared in 1927. Once postcards were no longer profitable, Mr. Colby devoted his time to photographing prominent city businesses, professional people, confirmations, graduations, and weddings. He took many of the pictures of the great flood of the Wisconsin River in Wausau in 1912. He retired in 1956, sold much of his equipment and stored the rest.
James Colby was united in marriage on June 16, 1911 in Wausau to Marie Lund and they had one son.
James Colby died on March 27, 1960. He is buried in Pine Grove Cemetery in Wausau, WI.