A powerful poem about Ona Judge's life and her self-emancipation from George Washington’s household.
Ona Judge was enslaved by the Washingtons, and served the President's wife, Martha. Ona was widely known for her excellent skills as a seamstress, and was raised alongside Washington’s grandchildren. Indeed, she was frequently mistaken for his granddaughter. This poetic biography follows her childhood and adolescence until she decides to run away.
Author Ray Anthony Shepard welcomes meaningful and necessary conversation among young readers about the horrors of slavery and the experience of house servants through call-and-response style lines. Illustrator Keith Mallett’s rich paintings include fabric collage and add further feeling and majesty to Ona’s daring escape.
With extensive backmatter, this poem may serve as a new introduction to American slavery and Ona Judge's legacy.