The actinobacterial acI lineage is among the most successful and ubiquitous freshwater bacterioplankton found on all continents, often representing more than half of all microbial cells in the lacustrine environment and constituting multiple ecotypes. However, stably growing pure cultures of the acI lineage have not been established despite various cultivation efforts based on ecological and genomic studies on the lineage, which is in contrast to the ocean from which abundant microorganisms such as Prochlorococcus, Pelagibacter, and Nitrosopumilus have been isolated. Here, we report the first two pure cultures of the acI lineage successfully maintained by supplementing the growth media with catalase. Catalase was critical for stabilizing the growth of acI strains irrespective of the genomic presence of the catalase-peroxidase (katG) gene. The two strains, representing two novel species, displayed differential phenotypes and distinct preferences for reduced sulfurs and carbohydrates, some of which were difficult to predict based on genomic information. Our results suggest that culture of previously uncultured freshwater bacteria can be facilitated by a simple catalase-supplement method and indicate that genome-based metabolic prediction can be complemented by physiological analyses.