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Unicorns with Margaret Ramsey

Updated: Jun 5, 2020

Margaret C. Ramsey, a retired nurse, folk artist and storyteller, loved children and loved introducing the arts to them. She was one of the few local artists whose works were acquired in the early days of Morris Museum of Art. Her life was truly inspiring. Learn more about Margaret Ramsey and make your own unicorn artwork. Share at #morrismuseumoart

Margaret Ramsey, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, 1985. Oil on canvas. Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, Georgia.

Born in 1932 in a one-bedroom house in Douglas, Ga., Ramsey was the eldest of nine children. She was the first member of her family to graduate from high school, and she was valedictorian of her class. She went on to complete nursing school, and returned to her home to become the first black registered nurse in Coffee County.

A self-taught folk artist who painted her childhood memories and stories she’d heard, Ramsey discovered the art of storytelling as she showed her art. She told stories at schools, festivals, Artists Row and the Morris Museum. ″(Ramsey) embraced the mission of the new museum in Augusta and became a familiar face at lectures and educational programs,” said Louise Keith Claussen, a former director of the museum. “Museum visitors, especially children, embraced her art in return. Her memory paintings, as she called them, were favorites with school tours.” Ramsey contributed to the children’s book Jump Up and Say: A Collection of Black Storytelling , published by Simon and Schuster in 1995.

Her paintings are in many public and private collections, including that of former President Jimmy Carter, the Morris Museum, owns four of her paintings. Ramsey passed away in 2011.

To Make a Unicorn with a 3D Curly Mane

  1. Print the template

  2. Cut a variety of colored paper into strips

  3. Curl the strips around a pen or pencil

  4. Glue the strips of paper along the unicorn's neck

  5. Decorate using your imagination!

Davidson, L. (2011, April 5). Nurse, Artist, Storyteller, Loved Children. Retrieved June 1, 2020, from


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