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John is a member of the well known firm of McDonald Brothers, whose extensive operations in stock raising and shipping are widely known over the northwest, and who are without doubt the largest firm of their kind in this section of the country, holding an estate of over four thousand acres, besides many hundred of cattle and horses and acting as agents of the United States in the purchase of horses and also in the same capacity for the British government. The firm is composed of the brothers, Hector, Duncan, Peter and our subject. They are at the present time operating the estates in the two counties of Union and Wallowa. Peter and Duncan attending to the business in Union and our subject prosecuting the interests of the firm in Wallowa County.
In Stark County, Illinois, our subject was born to John and Jane (Grant) McDonald, on September 27, 1859. In 1863 the parents removed with their family to Union County, settling in the Grande Ronde valley, near Summerville. Our subject worked with his father, acquiring a good education from the common schools until 1880, then stepped forth for him, forming a partnership with brothers, as mentioned above and since that time he has operated with them. In addition, however, he has devoted some time to other industries as, forming a partnership with C.T. McDaniels in the real estate and insurance business, and also operating some for the I.C.M&M. Co. In 1889 our subject came to Wallowa first as manager for the last named company and for four years was engaged in handling their business and quietly buying land in the county. In 1893 he opened up in the cattle business on a large scale, also handling horses. In 1895 he opened a butcher shop in Wallowa and soon added a packing establishment. At the present time he is commissioner of Wallowa county, and he was the first mayor of Wallowa, and in all of his public service, as in his private life, he is characterized by the same wisdom and excellent practical judgment, coupled with which is unswerving integrity and unflagging interests for the welfare of the people’s interests. Be it stated to the credit of Mr. McDonald that during the times of stringency in 1893, no appeal to him for assistance to tide over the hard times went unanswered, and in this as in Union County he is highly esteemed by all the people and beloved by every one who is acquainted with him.
On January 31, 1894, Mr. McDonald married Miss Maggie McLean, the nuptials occurring in Union County. In fraternal affiliations Mr. McDonald is quite prominent, being a member of the Masons, and is worshipful master of Standley Lodge, No. 113: of Chapter No. 9, Royal Arch Masons, in Lagrande: of I.O.O.F., Wallowa Lodge, No. 154, of Wallowa: of the K.O.T.M., Lowland Tent, No. 38, of Wallowa, Oregon: of W. of W., Wallowa lodge, No. 600: of K. of P., Kinsmen Lodge, No. 86, of Wallowa. In all these relations he is esteemed highly and his geniality and kindly way have won him friends from all classes.