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Flight to Freedom: " The Fields Family and Freedom's Fortress"

  • Broadcast in History



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Flight to Freedom: "The Fields Family and Freedom’s Fortress” 

What would you risk to gain freedom for your family?

Martha Ann Fields, her children, and her husband Washington Fields risked all to escape enslavement in Hanover County, VA to reach freedom at Fort Monroe – known as “Freedom’s Fortress” – in Hampton, Va. during the Civil War. “Flight to Freedom” is a dramatic interpretation of their journey, told through dramatic reading, song, and multimedia clips. Presented by Ajena Rogers, historical interpreter and a Fields family descendant and Drusilla Pair, genealogical researcher.

Ajena Cason Rogers, a native of Roanoke, VA, has been an impassioned interpreter of the African American experience her entire National Park Service career and is a proud descendant of Washington Fields (1815-1868) and his wife Martha Ann Fields (1813-1891) and their son James A. Fields (1844-1903). She now lives in Hanover County, where the family originated.

Drusilla Pair, a native of Newport News, VA, has been tracing her family history since 1994.  She is not a descendant of the Fields family but became interested in researching the history of the Fields family after attending a presentation by Gregory Cherry (1955-2007) who shared how he acquired and restored the James A. Fields House.  She is a member of the Hampton Roads Afro American Historical and Genealogical Society (AAHGS) and the Hampton Roads Association for the Study African American Life and History (ASALH).

Visit the Fields House Blog for more information about the James A. Fields House at