Sunday, October 14, 2018

Never Caught, the Story of Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar, Kathleen Van Cleve

Ona was born a slave on George Washington's farm.  Her mother taught her how to behave and how to hide her emotions.  Martha liked her manner and took her as personal slave.  That was a combination of luck, some good and some bad.

Aladdin and Edelweiss allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published January 8th.

This is a nonfiction account written in narrative form.  What you learn is that the slaves worked very hard with no reward.  There are long days, hard work, and those who don't keep up or talk back get punished.  It's hard for me to imagine in this day and age but there are signs this attitude still exists...

She creates Martha's clothes, repairs them when necessary and and keeps them clean and pressed.  It's a busy job.  They are lucky if they get one day off a week.  The food isn't the best but it keeps them alive.  

I have to admit I never thought about Washington owning slaves.  He was a Colonel, then he was our President.  To me, he'd should be above all that.  But you didn't pay slaves and they took care of your crops for you.  You made more money in the south than they did in the north.  He had no intention to let them go.  He did free his personal slave upon his death.  But Ona did not wait.

She found out the laws were different in Philadelphia and she used the freed slave network to get away.  She even had some white men go against Washington because they didn't believe in slavery anymore.

This gives you a good background on slavery and how they were treated.  The Washingtons weren't bad owners but slavery is not a good thing.  Sometimes you have to fight for what is right.

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