“A Slave of George Washington,” Benjamin Chase, Auburn, NH, December 1846. Ona’s father was an English indentured servant who had worked at Mount Vernon. At age 10, she began serving as a personal maid to Martha Washington at the Virginia mansio… PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) - Stepping off a boat in a New Hampshire port in 1796, 22-year-old Ona Judge was on the run from the family of President George Washington.. Judge… NEW YORK (Reuters) – Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite facing criminal charges she helped procure girls for the late financier Jeffrey Epstein to sexually abuse, on Monday forcefully proclaimed her innocence and proposed a $28.5 million bail package in a renewed effort to be freed from a New York jail this year. But as his reaction to Judge’s escape made clear, Washington was not ready to give up on the bound labor on which his Virginia plantation—and his life—was built. Either way, she quickly discovered his purpose for traveling to Portsmouth. Looking for a means to escape, Ona agreed to meet Whipple at the docks and return to Virginia. Though the gesture was far from meaningless, it didn’t go far enough. And Ona really becomes, and had already really become, Martha Washington’s top … Ona Maria Judge was born around 1774 at Mount Vernon. Martha announced that she planned to give Ona to Eliza as a wedding present, separating Ona from her family and the life she knew in Philadelphia and at Mount Vernon. Ona worked as Martha’s enslaved housemaid for the next seven years before running away. So, Ona Judge and six other enslaved people are taken to New York, where the nation’s first capital is. When a reporter from the Granite Freeman asked her if she regretted leaving the relative luxury of the Washingtons’ household, as she had worked so much harder after her escape, Ona Judge Staines memorably replied “No, I am free, and have, I trust been made a child of God by the means.”. 1846 interview with Ona Judge Staines. Ona Judge was born as a slave into George and Martha Washington's household. Ona Judge Plots Her Escape. HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate. There are no records of how she was introduced to this community or who helped her, and Ona kept this information secret to protect everyone’s safety. Over a month after the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills cast member filed for divorce from the famed attorney, a […] To help make ends meet, Ona continued her domestic work and they took in a boarder in one of their extra rooms.17, Washington made two concerted attempts to re-enslave Ona. First, while still in office, he sent a letter through Secretary of the Treasury Oliver Wolcott, Jr. to Joseph Whipple, Portsmouth’s collector of customs. The exhibition will furthermore profile 18 other former slaves. Considered the last “Founding Father” president, James Monroe was born in 1758 into an affluent, slave owning family in Westmoreland County, Virg... Andrew Johnson’s close association with Abraham Lincoln, as both his vice president and his successor, often disguises Johnson’s own... Uncovering the lives of enslaved people poses many challenges. Dunbar tells the story in a new book, Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge (Feb. 7, Atria, $26). ONA, WV (WOWK) – If we’ve learned anything so far this holiday season, it is that the spirit of “community” runs deep in the tri-state. © 2020 A&E Television Networks, LLC. Many decades later, when all of her family members had died, Ona gave two interviews about her life and escape to freedom. Oney Judge, a light mulatto girl, much freckled, with very black eyes and bushy black hair, she is of middle stature, slender, and delicately, about 20 years of age. Ona’s calculations changed after March 21, 1796, when Eliza Custis, Martha’s granddaughter, married Thomas Law. Usually George Washington did not prefer white indentured servants. Late the following year, when the federal capital moved to Philadelphia, the presidential household moved with it. How many weddings have been held at the White House? Much like George’s enslaved manservant, coachmen, and postilions, these individuals wore fancy livery because their uniforms needed to reflect the president’s wealth and status; Ona’s clothing was an extension of Martha’s status. Washington’s term ended on March 4, and he returned to Mount Vernon without her. (Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1977), pp. Despite all the hardships, Ona enjoyed the benefits of a life of freedom: She taught herself to read and write, embraced Christianity and worshiped regularly at a church of her choice. Ona Judge was a slave of the Washington’s who escaped to freedom while George was President of the United States. Governor John Langdon’s Home in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Over more than five years in Philadelphia—traveling in and out every six months—she met and became acquainted with members of the city’s free black community and former enslaved workers who had gained their freedom under the gradual abolition law. 248-50.. Work was scarce, and Ona’s son, William, is believed to have left home in the 1820s to become a sailor, like his father. When George Washington was elected president, he reluctantly left behind his beloved Mount Vernon to serve in Philadelphia, the temporary seat of the nation’s capital, after a brief stay in New York. In fact, as Erica Armstrong Dunbar writes in her book, Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge, Oney would have been in the minority as a enslaved woman in Philadelphia; fewer than 100 slaves lived within city limits in 1796. The person shot Salas’ 20-year-old son, Daniel Anderl, when he answered the door and then shot her husband multiple times before fleeing. Four months later, George Washington died, freeing all of his enslaved workers according to his will. Paul Jennings. There are no records of Andrew Judge’s departure from Mount Vernon, or whether his relationship with Betty was consensual. A judge has just recommended that Erika Jayne‘s estranged husband Thomas Girardi face criminal investigation over embezzlement claims as his assets, as well as the assets of his law firm, Girardi Keese, were also frozen. After fulfilling his four-year work contract at Mount Vernon, Andrew Judge moved off the plantation to start his own farm. The Washington slaves knew that the president had taken precautions to prevent them from taking advantage of this law. In 1803, Jack Staines died and Ona moved in with the Jack family to share household expenses. Erica Dunbar: [00:00:13] She found out that she was going to be given away as a wedding gift to her owner's granddaughter, that she would be returned to the South, a place that she had no interest in living. In 1773, Ona Judge … When Law arrived in Philadelphia, he brought his two illegitimate children that he had fathered while in India and he was plagued by rumors about his character. This book is the story of her to run . While the newspapers did not print the interviews verbatim, the quotes are rare examples of a formerly enslaved person describing their experiences in their own words. … During the summer after she escaped, Judge was walking in Portsmouth when she saw Elizabeth Langdon, the daughter of New Hampshire Senator John Langdon. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! Published in The Liberator in 1846. Unlike Washington’s other enslaved servants in Philadelphia, Ona received new shoes several times per year while working in the President’s House.6 Perhaps Ona wore out her shoes while accompanying Martha on her visits. After briefly holding a live-in position with the Bartlett family in Portsmouth, Ona left and moved with her children into the home of the Jacks family, where they remained. (Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1977), pp. Betty was lucky to be able to keep her son Austin with her with the move to Mt. The couple went on to have three children: Eliza, Will, and Nancy. Dolley Madison with a slave of George Washington did not prefer white indentured servants interviews abolitionist! From England straight to you years ago growing free black community that would facilitate her.... 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