D. M. Donald is a native of Scotland, and was born at Perth in 1841. He went to Canada at an early age, and lived there until he came to Redlands eight years ago. His son D. Donald, now the junior member of the firm of D. M. & D. Donald, was born in Canada in 1866.
The Messrs. Donald came to Redlands in 1889, and have since been engaged in contracting for the construction of residences and business houses. They are prepared to contract for everything in a building, from the ground to the roof, including foundations, painting, plastering and decorating. They have built or remodeled many of the finest residences and some of the principal buildings for business purposes in Redlands.
At the present time these gentlemen are establishing a planning mill in the brick building on East State street where C. L. Hayes kept the first livery stable in Redlands, which is being remodeled for its new uses. This is now being stocked with the finest wood-working machinery from the best makers. It is one of the prominent business improvements now being made in Redlands.
By making their own woodwork the Messrs. Donald, and their patrons as well, will not be subject to any delays whatever. They will keep on hand a complete stock of dry finishing lumber of the California varieties, and also of kiln-dried hard woods, such as quarter-sawed and plain, white and red oak stock, birch, etc. Their long experience in the East in handling wood-working machinery is a sufficient guarantee that anything turned out of their shops in this line will be of the right quality. They are establishing this plant solely for their own use, and will always keep it fitted in shape to do the very best work for which it is intended.
They will make a special feature of building, from architects’ designs, mantels, sideboards and similar interior fixtures which go to make up a complete modern residence. By having these things made at home, architects and owners will have an opportunity to inspect the work in process of manufacture and to know that it is as represented, both in workmanship and in materials; also the satisfaction of knowing that their ideas are being carried out as intended. The Messrs. Donald propose to give special attention to stair work and to give the finest and most substantial results along this line.
Newcomers or residents, who propose to build residences or to remodel any already constructed, are requested to consult the Messrs. Donald and invite proposals from them. They will cheerfully furnish estimates and give every opportunity for thorough investigation. The more elaborate the work the better will they be pleased to undertake it, although minor orders will not be slighted. Their references are the businessmen of Redlands.
It is certainly a pleasant transition, in ten years, from a point where all of the residences of Redlands were built from lumber hauled from Colton by team, to a point where the town itself can furnish every equipment for a complete and elaborate modern house, satisfactory to the most fastidious.
(Source: Illustrated Redlands, 1897, p. 73.)