Julius Seelye Bixler (President 1942-1960)

JSB dancing with Homecoming Queen 1956

President Bixler dancing with the 1956 Homecoming Queen. A skilled cellist, his deep love of music and the arts was well known, on campus and beyond Colby.

Julius Seelye Bixler (1894-1985) was the 16th President of Colby and a high-respected administrator and academic colleague. Read a brief biography here.


Bixler served as President at a time of robust growth in the college’s rare book and literary manuscript holdings. He took a keen interest in Special Collections and his excellent academic reputation facilitated new acquisitions. Bixler was himself a donor of materials, most notably those associated with the James Family, to which the Bixlers were connected through marriage. In addition to family correspondence, he also donated two handsome bookcases that were originally owned by William James of Albany. The bookcases reside in our Special Collections lobby.  A March 1970 article in the Colby Library Quarterly, written by Bixler, gives details of his James Family donations.


Mary Ellen Chase

James Family

Waldo Peirce

Thomas Sergeant Perry

Ben Ames Williams