Henry Lomb was born in Burgham, Germany, on 24th November, 1828. When he was twenty years old he emigrated to the United States.
Lomb worked as a cabinet maker before he joined John Jacob Bausch, the owner of a retail optical shop in Rochester. Lomb invested his savings in the business and became Bauche's partner. In 1860 the Bausch & Lomb company built the first machine in America to produce spectacles. Lomb was in charge of sales and Bausch concentrated on manufacturing.
On the outbreak of the Civil War Lomb resigned as sales manager of Bausch & Lomb in order to enlist in the New York State Volunteers. He was promoted to sergeant, lieutenant and then captain before leaving at the end of the war.
In 1876 the company began manufacturing microscopes. Later that year the Bausch & Lomb Optical Company won a distinction at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. The company also produced photographic lenses (1883), spectacle lenses (1889), microtomes (1890), binoculars and telescopes (1893). Henry Lomb died in Pittsford, New York, on 13th June, 1908.