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Ona Judge Outwits the Washingtons: An Enslaved Woman Fights for Freedom
Ona Judge Outwits the Washingtons: An Enslaved Woman Fights for Freedom
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Reviewed Titles Print Book Supported by Capstone Interactive Accelerated Reader
Capstone Editions

Ona Judge Outwits the Washingtons: An Enslaved Woman Fights for Freedom

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.

Reading LevelGrades 3-4
Interest LevelGrades 3-6
Lexile Level700L
ATOS Level4.5
AR Points0.5
AR Quiz #504955
Text TypeNarrative Nonfiction
PublisherCapstone Editions
BrandCapstone Editions
Page Dimensions9" x 11"
Page Count40
School/Library Price

Additional Formats


School Library Journal - Patricia Ann Owens, formerly at Illinois Eastern Community College, Mt. Carmel

"The attention-grabbing text and unique illustrations will make this a welcome addition for all history collections." - School Library Journal

October 1, 2019

Raise Them Righteous - Jennifer Miller

"Hooks is unflinching in her depiction of slavery, and weaves Ona’s personal story into the larger national story of enslaved blacks in America. . . .Hooks contrasts the radical difference between the newly experienced freedom of white Americans beginning their democratic experiment, and the conditions of enslaved blacks, who were considered property, not citizens. . . .The story is an accessible corrective to whitewashed versions of US history. Simone Agoussoye’s illustrations are warm and evocative. Her thoughtful use of color adds emotional depth to the picture book. This beautiful book is a must-have for personal and school libraries. It can be used during lessons on history, biography, or civics." - Raise Them Righteous

February 25, 2019

The Children's Book Review - Dr. Laura Kieselbach

"Her [Ona's] persistence and wit allowed her to stay hidden and ultimately free, despite the harrowing dangers she often faced. Told in prose, this book offers a look at the contradiction of what the founding fathers meant by freedom during the inception of the United States." - The Children's Book Review

February 5, 2021

Gwendolyn Hooks

Gwendolyn Hooks

Gwendolyn Hooks has written many books including If You Were A Kid During the Civil Rights Movement, The Cat Food Mystery, and Tiny Stitches: The Life of Medical Pioneer Vivien Thomas, for which she received the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Children’s Literature. She is the recipient of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Crystal Kite Award and her book  Block Party  is a Junior Library Guide selection. Gwendolyn resides in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Go to the Author’s Page →