John Holland founded the John Holland Gold Pen Company in 1862. He bought the company from a man who, fearing a Confederate invasion during the American Civil War. At the time, he specialized in dip pens.

The company moved to fountain pens, though not as quickly as other manufacturers. It is generally thought that, had they moved more quickly, the company might have done as well as the Parker pen company. In fact, Parker started as an agent for Holland, but, after determining a better designed, started his own company. Unfortunately, the company lost momentum, and ultimately had to close their doors during the 1950s.

The factory was in downtown in Cincinnati, Ohio, a few blocks from where my office is today.