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Margaret "Peg" Miller, a legendary artist in Spring Green, has died at 89.

Although she worked with a variety of materials, Miller was best known for her folk art creations. She would take a discarded desk, chair or mirror frame and paint every inch, including inside surfaces that wouldn't normally be seen, with tiny creatures, hearts and designs. Art patrons from all over the country came to Spring Green to observe her work. Her art was featured in a number of national publications.

Until recently, she lived in the old State Bank of Spring Green, a building she purchased but didn't renovate. She used the vault for her closet and lined the teller cages with grey "assemblages" she created.

She loved to supervise grade school youngsters, teaching them how to express themselves in color and, near the end of her life, she did the same thing for fellow residents of a Spring Green assisted living home.

In addition to her art, Miller was known as a recovery group guru. She quit drinking almost five decades ago and spent most of her sober years helping younger women who attempted, sometimes successfully and sometimes not, to maintain sobriety.

Some of these women lived with her for extended periods. One was Teresa McGovern, daughter of former presidential candidate George McGovern. The Teresa McGovern House serving Madison-area people in alcohol treatment is named for the late McGovern.

Those who knew Miller - and that number included friends from all over the world - also remember her as a lover of cats.

A memorial service will be held after the holidays.

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