Book cover of Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbarby Erica Armstrong Dunbar

A startling and eye-opening look into America’s First Family, Never Caught is the powerful story about a daring woman of “extraordinary grit” (The Philadelphia Inquirer).

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. In setting up his household he brought along nine slaves, including Ona Judge. As the President grew accustomed to Northern ways, there was one change he couldn’t abide: 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.

Interview with the Author

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137 Erica Dunbar: The Washington’s Runaway Slave, Ona Judge
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Erica Armstrong Dunbar, “Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge” (Simon and Schuster, 2017)
12/16/20         62 min

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“Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge” with Erica Armstrong Dunbar
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43. Erica Armstrong Dunbar
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