History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/William G. Donnan
WILLIAM G. DONNAN was born at West Charleston, New York, on the 30th of June, 1834. He lived on a farm in boyhood and was educated at Cambridge Academy. He entered Union College later and graduated in 1850. In September of the same year he came to Iowa and located at Independence where he studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1857. In September he was elected recorder and treasurer of the county and served until 1862, when he enlisted in the Union army and was elected lieutenant. He won rapid promotion in the service until he reached the rank of major before the close of the war. In 1867 he was elected to the State Senate on the Republican ticket, serving four years. He was largely instrumental in securing the establishment of the Hospital for the Insane at Independence. In 1870 he received the Republican nomination for Representative in Congress for the Third District and was elected by a majority of 4,964. He was reëlected in 1872, serving two terms, declining a third. In 1884 he was a delegate to the Republican National Convention and voted for the nomination of President Arthur.