John "Daddy" Holly (1818 - 1892) was one of the earliest, if not the earliest, known decoy carver on the Upper Chesapeake Bay and for that matter, in North America. He was from Havre de Grace, Harford County Maryland and gunned birds for the market. He was the earliest known sinkbox hunter. I have heard it stated that John Holly started his carving career in the 1830s.
This particular Canvasback is a very rare and unusual Daddy Holly "Swimming Pose" Canvasback because the neck is slightly leaning forward of the body as a duck swimming in the water. It is in very old and spectacular Captain Wilbur Corwin gunning Paint. Corwin was a market hunter from Long Island New York in the late 1800s. A good detailed photo of the paint is listed at the bottom of this page. This decoy also has the original iron keel in the bottom.
This Decoy is approx. 15 1/2 inches long and has all of the bumps, flakes, cracks and bruises that a 145 year old gunned over bird will have. These only give this old historic bird character. I take very good detailed pictures, please look over the pictures.
I have to give credit to Jeff Pelayo and the late Henry Fleckenstein and who graciously Identified the paint and the rare Holly swimming pose on this incredible decoy in 2007.