James Montgomery Hall was born in St. Peter Port in the Channel Island of Guernsey in 1851, the son of Stewart Hall and Margaret (née Johnson). Stewart was a tailor and James and his brother John followed his career. In 1881 James and John were residing at a hotel in Trenton, Hastings County, Ontario. In June of that year, James married Emma Johnson (1857-1937) of Trenton in Brighton, Ontario. By 1891 the couple were living in Deseronto, Ontario, with their two daughters, Evelyn 'Tottie' (b. 1882) and Flossie (b. 1887). James was continuing to work as a tailor. The Halls had a third child, Gordon, in 1894. They lived at 426 Thomas Street.
James died on August 4, 1919. His daughter Flossie became a school teacher and married Thomas Chalmers in Deseronto in 1926. The couple had one daughter, Frances.