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"J" is for Jackson, Mary

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"J" is for Jackson, Mary [b. 1945]. Artist, basket maker. Born in Mount Pleasant, Jackson grew up in an African American community of basket makers and learned the craft as a child from her mother. In the mid-1970s she began creating baskets seriously and soon mastered a variety of shapes and types including the rice-winnowing tray called the “fanner,” grain storage baskets, and flower, market, and sewing baskets for domestic use. She had a solo exhibition at the Gibbes Museum of Art in 1984 that introduced her to the public. Today her work is now in the collections of some of the nation's finest museums and in American embassies around the world. Her innovation has been to create baskets of original design. Using traditional materials and methods, Mary Jackson creates sweet grass baskets of elegant, innovative design.

Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar receivedhisA.B.degreefromDavidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.