Anne Bradshaw Clopton was best known as the "cob-web artist" for her unique artistic ability of painting on spider webs. She perfected a method of painting with oil on fragile cobwebs, resulting in ethereal, graceful works of art. Before long Anne gained international recognition for her talent. Her paintings were exhibited at the New York World's Fair, the Robert Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida, and numerous other museums. She also appeared on a number of television programs of the early 1950's. Upon her death, she willed her large painting collection to the Burritt Museum in Huntsville, Alabama.
Anne Bradshaw was born during the summer of 1878 in Shelbyville, Tennessee. She was the first of six children. Her parents were both teachers, and young Anne had a strong desire to learn. When Anne was eleven years old she read in a magazine about a German artist who painted on the webs of spiders. She immediately set about trying to do the same, patiently and painstakingly trying over many years until she perfected the process.
After carefully collecting webs for a 'canvas', Anne would delicately apply tiny dots of oil paint and let it dry, each painting took 5-6 weeks to complete.
Mrs. Clopton raised a large family of five children, and was also a teacher for most of her life. She had an insatiable drive for learning new things. With her natural abilities as a teacher she instilled excitement to learn in every student she taught. Anne taught in the Huntsville school system from 1894 at the age of 16, and she taught Latin, art and math from 1921 to 1943 at Joe Bradley High School.
Anne formed the first Girl Scout troop in this area of Alabama. She acquired several war-surplus tents and took her scouts on yearly camping trips, the first organized camping for girls in the state of Alabama.
In her later years, she became a breeder of Persian cats. After her retirement from teaching, she was the first woman in her county to seek a place on the Board of Education.