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Park Hosts Slave Descendants' Tour Of Ancestor’s Sites

Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park

National Park News

On November 17th, staff at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park and historian David Blight hosted Ruth Washington and Maureen Ramos, the granddaughter and great-great granddaughter respectively of Fredericksburg slave John Washington, taking them on a tour of sites their ancestor knew and lived in during his life in Fredericksburg from 1838 to 1862. 

John Washington’s rare memoir of his life as a slave has been published in Dr. Blight’s new book, A Slave no More… 

The tour included two of John Washington’s homes, one of which witnessed his separation from his mother at age 11 (vividly described in his memoir), his church, and the site on the Rappahannock River where John Washington crossed to freedom on April 18, 1862 (also wonderfully described in his memoir). 

For Ms. Washington and Ms. Ramos, it was a journey of discovery.  Until just weeks before, they knew nothing of their grandfather’s story. 

"The only way I can describe it is like finding buried treasure. We didn't know, and now we do,” said Ms. Ramos. 

Click on the link below for the full story from the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star



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