Augusta Savage, born Augusta Christine Fells (February 29, 1892 March 26, 1962) was an African American sculptor associated with the Harlem Renaissance. She was also a teacher, and a voice for equal rights.
Augusta Fells (Savage) was born in Green Cove Springs (near Jacksonville), Florida. She began making clay figures as a child, mostly small animals, but her father would beat her when he found her sculptures; at the time, he believed her sculpture to be a sinful practice, based upon his interpretation of the "graven images" portion of the Bible. After the family moved to West Palm Beach, she sculpted a Virgin Mary figure, and, upon seeing it, her father changed his mind, regretting his past actions. The principal of her new school recognized and encouraged her talent, and paid her one dollar a day to teach modeling during her senior year. This began a life-long commitment to teaching as well as to art.