Born on July 15th in Carmi, Illinois, Mr. Barth graduated from Draughon-Porter Business College and taught at the Van Dyke Art School before he opened his first store in Mt. Carmel, Illinois which he operated for two years.
Mr. Barth enlisted in the Allied Signal Corp at the start of WWI in France. After the war, he came to Detroit in 1919 and worked for C.M. Hayes photographic studios in Detroit for eight years.
In 1928, he opened Barth Studios in Ferndale and operated it until his retirement in 1964. The studio was open for 36 years. Barth Studios took all the Lincoln High School portraits over the years and many are on display at the museum.
Mr. Barth served on the Ferndale Methodist Church building committee and the Ferndale School Board. He was a member of the Franklin Community Church, VFW Paul Hornaday post 1407, American Legion post 330, Photographers Association of America, Professional Photographers of America, Michigan Photographers Association, Photographic Society of Michigan. Detroit Portrait Photographers association and the Early Engine Club. Mr. Barth was a member of Kiwanis International and a Charter member and Past President of the Ferndale Kiwanis Club which was founded in 1930. In 1977, he was made a life-time member. He was a skilled pianist and organist and played piano at the Kiwanis meetings and Vibraharp at various church and social events. Here is an video interview with Mr. Barth from 1986.
Herman F. Barth, 97, died March 1st at Botsford General Hospital from complications following a surgery for a broken hip and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in Detroit. Services were held at Spaulding & Curtin funeral home in Ferndale.