Grandma Moses



page personal try their hand
busy take up keep busy
sew train (2) discovery
chance arthritis would rather
follow hail (2) take lessons
scene draw up incline (2)
nearly suppose draw/drew/drawn
advice admire lead/led/led
want formal give/gave/given
avoid show (2) would-be
use folk (2) follow her lead
claim deep (2) make/made/made
hate look at attachment
collect almanac sell/sold/sold
sort of






And now a page from our Sunday Morning Almanac: December 15, 1961, fifty-four years ago today, the day the painter known as “Grandma Moses” died at the age of one-hundred-and-one (101).

Born in 1860, Anna-Mary Robinson Moses had no formal training in art. Instead she lived much of her life on a farm, in Eagle Bridge, New York.

She took up painting in her late seventies (70s) to keep herself busy after arthritis made it too difficult for her to sew.

A chance discovery by a traveling collector led to her first one-woman show in New York City in 1940.

Hailed as one of the greatest American folk artist, Grandma Moses drew upon her long ago experiences.

Grandma Moses, Artist: “I’ve been inclined to paint old scenes. I suppose that’s because I am old.”

She was nearly ninety-five (95) years old when she talked to CBS’s Art Murrow in 1955.

Art Murrow, Journalist: “What sort of advice would you give to those people if they had time to try their hand at painting?”

Grandma Moses, Artist: “Well anybody can paint, who wants to paint.”
Art Murrow, Journalist: “Can they?”
Grandma Moses, Painter: “Oh, sure! Anybody can paint.”

Grandma Moses advised would-be artists to follow her lead and avoid taking lessons.

Grandma Moses, Painter: “If they had a teacher, they would soon paint as the teachers paint. And it’s best for them to use their own ideas.”

Personal though her paintings where, she claimed to have no deep attachment to them.

Art Murrow, Journalist: “You hate to see a painting sold, after you’ve made it, and liked it and looked at it a long time?”

Grandma Moses, Painter: “Oh no; I’d rather see the money!”

Grandma Moses left her admirers plenty of paintings to like and look at — more than sixteen-hundred (1,600) in all.


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1. Grandma Moses surfed the internet and did computer graphics. True or false?

2. Was “Grandma Moses” her real name? Did she live in New York City? Was she a city girl?

3. Grandma Moses started painting when she was five years old. Is this right or wrong?

4. Did she promote herself on social media such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube?

5. She mostly painted cars, airplanes and cruise ships?

6. Grandma Moses believed she had special talents and abilities. Only people with special talents and abilities can paint. Is this correct or incorrect?
Should people take art lessons from a teacher?

7. Did she want to keep all her paintings?


A. Does Grandma Moses’ life offer any lessons for others?

B. I am a painter. Painting is my hobby. Yes or no? Did you paint when you were younger?

C. Do you know anyone who paints?

D. I know some old people with special talents or hobbies.

E. What might happen in the future?

F. What should people do?

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