Captain John A. Donahue
Captain John A. Donahue, a young and very successful captain, and whose career on the lakes, while not so great as that of many who have followed a like vocation, gave promise of a bright future, was born in Buffalo in 1867. His father was Capt. Joseph Donahue, now of Cleveland, who is still sailing. The family removed to Cleveland when John A. Donahue was a child, and they have continued to live in that city up to the present time.
Our subject began sailing at an early age, his first position being that of watchman. Previous to this he had been attending school in Cleveland and vicinity. His intelligence and keen desire to excel caused him to be promoted rapidly, and it was not long before he had reached the rank of mate. He held this position successively on the steamers Fay, Kasota, Grover, Onoko, Gladstone and Alva, and in 1894 was made master of the steamer Superior. He ably discharged the duties devolving upon the position, and during the following season commanded the steamer R.P. Ranney. In the early spring of 1896 he was stricken with an attack of typhoid fever, and on April 13, the very day he was to have sailed, he passed away, being but twenty-nine years of age.
On February 14, 1893, Captain Donahue was married to Miss Isabella Cowley, daughter of Edward Cowley, a well-known contractor of Cleveland. They were the parents of two children who died in infancy. The Captain was highly respected by all who knew him, being possessed of a high moral character; was thoughtful and affectionate in his home life. He numbered his friends from the beginning to the end of the chain of the Great Lakes.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.