The historical Donohue House is known today as the Golden Tree Inn & Hostel. Built by master carpenter Michael Donohue the house was originally part of his 180 acre homestead.
Donohue was a Civil War veteran, he and his family settled on Orcas Island in the late 1800s, and built the Donohue House in 1890. During the Civil War Donohue fought for the Union and saw action during General Sherman’s famous 1864 March to the Sea. Like many Civil War veterans Donohue moved to the Pacific Northwest to take advantage of homesteading laws in the region. However, by the time most veterans arrived much of the best land subject to the Homestead Act had already been claimed. Settlers from this era ended up in the more remote parts of the state where the land was less valuable--and harder to farm.
Life was hard for the Donohues. Besides the difficulties they faced farming their homestead, they faced personal tragedy as well. Sadly two of their three children died young. Michael gifted the Donohue House to his last surviving son, Harry, as a wedding gift. Michael Donohue was also commissioned to construct several other buildings in Eastsound including Emmanuel Episcopal Church.