The Robert Donner collection consists of books, serials, pamphlets and ephemera on American history, political science, economics, Americanism, minority groups, and Communist and Socialist activities within America. Donner collected most of his library, which he housed in his Colorado Springs, Colorado office, after his retirement from the Donner Corporation in 1957.
The ACU library received the collection in December of 1964 after Robert’s death in August of the same year. He gave his collection to ACU because, he said, “It is a Christian college, and that is what the world needs.”
The collection consists of about 4,000 monographs and over 3,000 pamphlets and ephemera. Most of the ephemeral materials were printed by political movements and not released via traditional commercial channels.
Donner attended Yale University from 1912-1913 and started in his father’s steel company business in 1915. He married Margaret Hunter in 1928 and had two children. He was at different times involved as president, director and chairman of the board in the Donner Foundation, Inc., which was started in memory of his brother, Joseph W. Donner, by their father, William Henry Donner. This foundation provides funds for cancer research. The books and pamphlets of his collection are cataloged and searchable in the ALCON database.