for Ona Judge Outwits the Washingtons by Gwendolyn Hooks and Simone Agoussoye
Enslaved by George and Martha Washington from childhood, Ona Judge fed chickens and fetched water from a treacherous well before she began working inside the house when she was ten. She was taken by the Washingtons when they moved to New York City and, later, Philadelphia, where she saw free Blacks and recognized that the Washingtons would never release her from their ownership. Ona made the decision to run for freedom when she learned she was to be given as a wedding gift to a family member. Her liberty was threatened several times by those who recognized her and wanted to return her to the Washingtons, but Ona was able to avoid each trap with intelligence and courage. This substantial picture book narrative grounds readers in Ona’s life and perspective, clearly stating the inhumane realities of slavery demonstrated by her personal story. (Ages 6–10)
CCBC Choices 2020. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2020. Used with permission.
Soon after American colonists had won independence from Great Britain, Ona Judge was fighting for her own freedom from one of America's most famous founding fathers, George Washington. George and Martha Washington valued Ona as one of their most skilled and trustworthy slaves, but she would risk everything to achieve complete freedom. Born into slavery at Mount Vernon, Ona seized the opportunity to escape when she was brought to live in the President's Mansion in Philadelphia. Ona fled to New Hampshire and started a new life. But the Washingtons wouldn't give up easily. After her escape, Ona became the focus of a years-long manhunt, led by America's first president. Gwendolyn Hooks' vivid and detailed prose captures the danger, uncertainty, and persistence Ona Judge experienced during and after her heroic escape. The Capstone Interactive edition comes with simultaneous access for every student in your school and includes read aloud audio recorded by professional voice over artists.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.