Hollin Hills was the brainchild of Robert C. Davenport, a Department of Agriculture employee who came to Washington from Nebraska in 1938, at the peak of FDR’s New Deal. After World War II, he became a successful merchant-builder in the Virginia suburbs as a sideline to his government day job.
Davenport had a vision for Hollin Hills, and he also had the ability to assemble the raw materials, funding, and creative cast of characters needed to bring his vision to life. The land he chose in 1946 was hilly, with meandering creeks, steep slopes, difficult building sites, no utilities, and no roads. For most developers, that combination would have spelled disaster. For Davenport, it looked like destiny on his doorstep.