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Never Caught
Never Caught: Ona Judge, the Washingtons, and the Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave | Erica Armstrong Dunbar
A startling and eye-opening look into Americas First Family, Never Caught is the powerful narrative of Ona Judge, George and Martha Washingtons runaway slave who risked it all to escape the nations capital and reach freedom. When George Washington was elected president, he reluctantly left behind his beloved Mount Vernon to serve in Philadelphia, the temporary seat of the nations capital, after a brief stay in New York. In setting up his household he took Tobias Lear, his celebrated secretary, and nine slaves, including Ona Judge, about which little has been written. As he grew accustomed to Northern ways, there was one change he couldnt get his arms around: Pennsylvania law required enslaved people be set free after six months of residency in the state. Rather than comply, Washington decided to circumvent the law. Every six months he sent the slaves back down south just as the clock was about to expire. Though Ona Judge lived a life of relative comfort, the few pleasantries she was afforded were nothing compared to freedom, a glimpse of which she encountered first-hand in Philadelphia. So, when the opportunity presented itself one clear and pleasant spring day in Philadelphia, Judge left everything she knew to escape to New England. Yet freedom would not come without its costs. At just twenty-two-years-old, Ona became the subject of an intense manhunt led by George Washington, who used his political and personal contacts to recapture his property. Impeccably researched, historian Erica Armstrong Dunbar weaves a powerful tale and offers fascinating new scholarship on how one young woman risked it all to gain freedom from the famous founding father.
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j9brown
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Pickpick

Really fascinating story. Ona was incredible. And it's a very different and important angle on the Washingtons than the usual.

62 likes1 stack add
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mrsmarch
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Still reading Never Caught #bookspin…..about 40% done. Here‘s a picture from my day yesterday! Amazing photo by my friend Patrice Hatcher!

TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 12mo
24 likes1 comment
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RavenLovelyReads
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Starting this today- any of my friends read this before? I‘d love to hear your thoughts. #newcoffeecup

JenReadsAlot Listened on audio and enjoyed it! 1y
42 likes1 comment
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KatieDid927
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Pickpick

I think it‘s really important that we look at the full history of this nation and see our founding fathers for the fallible human beings they were. Yes, Washington was our first President and led the revolution to victory. He also was an unapologetic slaver and white supremacist. This book examines his attachment to slavery through the story of one of his escaped slaves and how he would even circumvent the law to keep human beings in bondage.

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mrsmarch
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20 books. 15 physical, 5 audio (the slips of paper). Focus: Black authorship, Black narratives, BIWOC, slavers & the enslaved in Virginia. I have chosen to revamp my #bookspin list entirely because I have a lot to learn right now. I am trying to research the family of an enslaved ancestor and give her a rightful chance at her own narrative. So I‘ve got to learn about the lives of enslaved Black women in the US. #BLM #ownvoices

TheAromaofBooks Glad to have you back for another round!!! 2y
ValerieAndBooks So many fantastic choices 💖. I just did a screenshot and my TBR list has just grown even more 💖 2y
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StaceGhost
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Pickpick

Setting up my June reading list using a few of Justina Ireland‘s recommendations. Link to her thread in case you missed it: https://tinyurl.com/y9gygsqx

ShelleyBooksie Thank you for sharing 2y
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sammisho
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Pickpick

Fascinating look at a little known woman in American history. Ona Judge, slave to the Washington's, escaped and claimed her freedom. The Washington's were considered benevolent slave owners, but that did not make up for the overwhelming trauma slavery caused.
#blitsy #womenshistorymonth

BookInMyHands I really liked how this one pulled apart the myth of “benevolent slave owner.” I listed to this one read by Robin Miles and it was amazing. 4y
sammisho @bookinnyhands Yes! There is no such thing as a nice slave holder. Washington did great things...he still owned people! I listened to audio too. It was great! 4y
Reviewsbylola This sounds so interesting! 4y
sammisho @reviewsbylola I would recommend!; 4y
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Aimeesue
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Lots of good ebook deals today in the US stores!
#kindledeal

jillrhudy Ooooooooo 4y
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Weaponxgirl
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Pickpick

Managed to listen to this yesterday for the #24in48. This is a pick as I loved the subject matter but it took a while to get to Ona judge actually being in the run and making a new life for herself. That part fascinating. It‘s a pick but not a strong pick which is a pity as I really wanted to love not just like this one.

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Weaponxgirl
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Was at work when #24in48 started but I‘m going to go to bed whilst listening to this to try and catch up on some reading.

Kaye 👍🏼 4y
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MallenNC
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Pickpick

I'm always trying to read history not taught in school. The story of Ona Judge, who escaped slavery in the household of George Washington, gives another aspect of the founding of the U.S. This isn't as action-packed as the subtitle implies and there's quite a bit of speculation by the author, but it was a worthwhile read. Robin Miles is a great narrator. #nonfictionnovember

JenReadsAlot I really liked this one on audio as well! 4y
MallenNC @JenReadsAlot Robin Miles does a great job. I've heard her on other books. 4y
23 likes2 comments
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AnansiGirl
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📖 Never Caught

🖋 Trevor Noah

🎞 Napoleon Dynamite

🍑 Nectarine

#manicmonday @JoScho

JoScho Love that movie! 4y
AnansiGirl @JoScho Vote for Pedro! 🕺🏽 4y
JoScho Tina you fat lard! 4y
22 likes3 comments
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BookInMyHands
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Pickpick

In school I learned almost exclusively white perspective history. When I heard about the founding fathers owning slaves it was through the racist myth of “benevolent slaveholder.”

Based on Ona Judge‘s personal account, as well as historical documents of the time, this fascinating account of life as a slave with the Washingtons, and Judge‘s escape, is an important and too often overlooked part of our history.

#crossculturalstories

Lcsmcat Sounds fascinating! Stacked. 4y
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BookInMyHands
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1. Tea helps me center.
2. My friend‘s mini concert on the harp. My friend plays for people in hospice and she has an amazing gift for soothing souls.
3. I love dairy, but I‘m allergic. I get so sick that it‘s not even worth it anymore.
4. 😔😢😠😡🤬🙌👏
5. Nope. My sister broke so many bones as a kid that I didn‘t feel the need 😉.

SamanthaMarie I have a dairy allergy as well. I feel your (literal) pain. And yes, tea! Do you have a go to? 4y
BookInMyHands @SamanthaMarie Yes! Early Grey (sometimes with lavender) and almond milk creamer that I make myself. 4y
SamanthaMarie That sounds delicious! Especially homemade creamer ♡ I've been craving lavender drinks, this reminds me to put some in my Amazon cart. :) 4y
42 likes3 comments
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trueisa4letterword
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Pickpick

Another ebook checkout success! The author really explains what the enslaved people would think and react. I feel like I would hate that if my mood was the slightest bit different.

Fascinating and a quarter of the ebook is notes! I will check those out in print though.

#nonfiction

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trueisa4letterword
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Hmmm...reminds me of what happened to my father when he sailed to South Africa when he was in Greek Merchant Marines during the 1970s...

#blacksailors

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JenReadsAlot
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this - I also felt like I learned more than just the story of George Washington's runaway slave, Ona Judge. #audio

RavenLovelyReads I picked up this book- it‘s #3 on my never ending TBR 😉 Glad to see you enjoyed it! (edited) 4y
JenReadsAlot @RavenLovelyReads I hope you enjoy it... whenever you read it 😁 4y
RavenLovelyReads 😂😂😂 hopefully by September! 🤞 4y
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LazyLimaLife
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Is there anything better than buying books when on vacation? Well, yeah, I guess winning the lottery or having Idris Elba deliver your room service, but book buying is in the top 5 and is the most likely thing to actually happen.

CatLass007 ❤️ Idris Elba 4y
Reggie Ditto Idris Elba. 4y
LazyLimaLife 😁😍😁 4y
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Librarybelle
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Pickpick

Ona Judge was a slave owned by Martha Washington, until one day Judge simply vanished from the house. What transpires after that shows how dedicated the Washingtons were to getting Judge back. Dunbar discusses slavery in the late 18th century, as well as the changing political climate towards slavery and servitude.

A very important read. So glad I read this, though there were parts that felt very repetitive. #SebastianKitty #catsoflitsy

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Librarybelle
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Starting this tonight. Why do I get the feeling I‘ll probably yell at the book at some point?

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8little_paws
Pickpick

The difficulty in researching history of WOC in US history is sadly, there are few direct sources from which to pull. That said I think the author did the best she could with what's available. This book gives good insight into the lives of both enslaved people and free Blacks during the 1700s. I thought the narrator was great and ultimately I think I liked this more on audio than I would have in print.

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Arbol
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Currently Reading: not quite a 3rd finished but so far this is excellent. I really hope more people read this and reconsider the pedestal GW has been put on (can we stop calling them founders and call them colonizers & slaveholders already?). The lengths the Washington‘s go to to not only capture runaways but also to circumvent new laws promising freedom are appalling. Not surprising but terrible nonetheless. #audiobook

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Eggbeater
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Mehso-so

I liked the book but there was not enough meat to Ona's history. There was too much speculation, imagining of possible scenarios, and "perhaps." It is an important story to be told and we as a country need to know our real history. The Washingtons enslaved people and those human beings deserve to be remembered. I was sad that it is not possible to have the complete story of the courage and character of Ona Judge Staines.

Kaye I was wondering about this book. I‘d seen it before but hadn‘t read any reviews. Thanks 🙂 (edited) 5y
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ShariEstaLeando
Pickpick

Interesting, easy read.

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Librarian
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Pickpick

Illuminating look at the attitudes toward slavery during Washington‘s time and from Washington himself. Ona was a marvel.

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hwestfall
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Pickpick

There were lots of interesting facts about the time period and about the Washington family. However, I wasn't a huge fan of the style of writing. There were a number of times I felt the author was assuming what Ona was thinking and feeling. They were generally safe assumptions but I wish it had been phrased differently. Overall, a interesting book and I would recommend it to young adults especially.

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hwestfall
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It's finally #silent in our home. All the kids are tucked in bed and the Eagles have won the Super Bowl. I am trying out my new book light while hubby sleeps away. #ReadingResolutions @Jess7

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lennearb
Pickpick

Fascinating history that rarely gets much attention. Even Chernow's thorough biography of Washington only gets into part of this story.

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TeeCee
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Pickpick

Good read, and one not flattering of the Washingtons, esp Mrs. Also it provides detail on what an enslaved person‘s life was like, and the often heartbreaking ramifications of the few choices they could make. And hearing Ona‘s story makes you realize all the other histories that have been lost due to enslavement. Eye-opening.

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megnews
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hwestfall
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When your family asks for your Amazon #wishlist and you realize the only items in there are books. #noteworthynovember #booksarethebestgifts #mylististenbookslong #sorrynotsorry

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Redwritinghood
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Mehso-so

It seems that there really isn‘t that much known about Ona Judge, which leads to a lot of “she would have” done or felt a certain way. Also, the few letters written over a few years and a couple of visits to negotiate with her to return hardly seemed like a “relentless pursuit”. On the up side, this book gives a lot of great historical information on how enslaved people navigated the laws and their lives in the early days of the country.

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Redwritinghood
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I have this crazy idea to read all the books from the National Book Award short lists for fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. I‘m trying to finish by the end of the year, so starting this non-fiction book today along with this poetry collection. Adding the other book too because it‘s almost Halloween, and I need a ghost story.

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Pedrocamacho
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Pickpick

I loved this book. It is a thoroughly enjoyable (and quick) read. The story of the escape of Ona Judge Staines is remarkable. I also really enjoyed the portrait of antebellum African-American life as well as the winding down of institutional slavery in the north (e.g. Did you know that New Hampshire, the live free or die state, didn‘t officially abolish slavery until 1857?)

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razmanda
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Library haul! I cannot believe how short their waitlists were!

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iread2much
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Bailedbailed

I really wanted to like this book, the topic was fascinating, but I just couldn't. The author kept interjecting opinion into the historical narrative and that really bothered me. I think it's ok to say there is no evidence and then either move on or pull evidence from a similar situation and discuss how that evidence support your idea. Not to just put words/emotions into a historical persons mouth. 0/5 stars

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AmyWrites
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Pickpick

This was an excellent read...and after just visiting the National Museum of African American History in Washington, DC last weekend it was timely for me. (I think every white American should be required to visit, fwiw) Hard to feel any misty-eyed patriotism about our first president after reading this.

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libchristina
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Pickpick

Great read! The thing I disliked about the book was the Dunbar guessed a lot about different parts of Judge's life.

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BooksForYears
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Pickpick

A must-read for American History enthusiasts, especially those with an interest in George Washington's life beyond wartime and the presidency. Engagingly written, the author follows the life of Mount Vernon house slave Ona Judge and her escape from slavery.

LeahBergen This sounds really good. 5y
Andrew65 This looks really interesting. 5y
HotMessJess This looks awesome!! 5y
bitterbear That looks like the overlook hotel (the shining)😮 5y
113 likes12 stack adds4 comments
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BooksForYears
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Had a fantastic time hearing Erica Armstrong Dunbar talk about her new book - about one of Martha Washington's slaves who ran away during their time in Philly, and lived as a fugitive for the next 50+ years.

CrowCAH Wow, what an amazing story! 5y
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shawnmooney
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Oh wow, do I ever need to know a lot more about this!

http://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2017/03/14/ona-judge-george-washington

LeahBergen Ooo, I might need this! 6y
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Audrey
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Mehso-so

I wanted to love this book mostly because the underlying story is so compelling. It definitely gives a different view of The Washingtons. The problem with the book was the actual writing. I know there is limited info on Ona. But there was too much theorizing and too much of stating the obvious: Ona would rather be free in poverty instead of being a house slave. Unfortunately this premise was stated every few pages. I got it the first time.

Audrey This would have worked better either as a long article or as a work of historical fiction based in facts so that Ona's story could have been better told. 6y
Reviewsbylola That's unfortunate. Sounds like a good story! 6y
Audrey @Reviewsbylola it really was so interesting and could have been compelling but for the writing style. I'm still glad I read it though. (edited) 6y
iread2much I completely agree! 5y
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Ellen_C
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Pickpick

Fascinating history about George and Martha Washington's runaway slave and GW's 3-year attempt to get her back, even if by illegal means. Dunbar describes what life in the free north was like fora slave and the Washingtons' financial and political concerns. https://cannonballread.com/2017/03/an-unsung-american-hero/

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Buddys_Momma
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Excited to started this book and learn about the story of Ona Judge. Hoping this keeps my attention as it's been difficult for me to get completely thru books lately. Could be because I'm impatient and there are so many good ones in my possession right now between my library hauls, book clubs and tbr! #thestruggleisreal

MicheleinPhilly Me too! I can be in the middle of an AMAZING book that I'm loving and then I look at my Kindle or shelves and have to fight the temptation to start 6 more. 6y
Buddys_Momma @MicheleinPhilly I know, right??? 6y
18 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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hollytucker
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Pickpick

Interesting! sometimes a bit more speculative than I would have liked, but tells the little known story of Ona Judge, George Washington's slave. I had a chance to hear Erica talk about her book on a panel we were on at the American Library Association's conference a few weeks ago. She's really engaging.

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Mamashep
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This one is suffering from too much "must have felt" and "would likely have." There was probably not enough material for a full book. But we'll see.

21 likes1 stack add