The Fossetts

Creator: Roman Howell
Genre: Drama
Age rating: 13 and older
Peter Fossett's world is destroyed when the death of his secret teacher, Thomas Jefferson, reveals a dark secret: Peter was actually always a slave. Now, forced to work for strangers, he must learn what it means to be brave and find a way back to his family.
Synopsis: Based on the real life of Peter Fossett

In the year 1900, Peter Fossett, an 85 year old African American returns to Monticello, the house of Thomas Jefferson, and the place where he worked as the door boy. A young reporter named Jacob asks him to recount his life.

In the past, Peter was only twelve when his master Thomas Jefferson dies. Despite Jefferson promised freedom, the entire Fossett family is individually sold into slavery. Peter is now owned by the Jones family. Mr. Jones agrees that once Peter’s dad, Joseph, earns enough money, he can buy Peter back.

Now the Jones’ doorboy, Peter builds relationships with theJones children and the other slaves, including childish Ampy, the old one eyed Elliot. The Jones children sneak college books into the house and Peter teaches himself how to read. Peter starts to use his knowledge to forge free papers for the other slaves. Years pass until Joseph returns with enough money to buy Peter back. But Mr. Jones refuses to sell.

Some slave sellers stop by and Ampy discovers that Peter’s sister Ann-Elizabeth is owned by in a nearby plantation. Peter and Ampy steal horses and ride away in the night and find her. They all try to run away together but Peter is left behind. He is caught by Mr. Jones and brought back to the field in chains.

He is made to work the fields for another ten years under strict supervision. Old Elliot comes down with a fever. Peter does what he can to help him but he won’t survive the night. Elliot, bedridden, tells Peter to make a run for it and burns himself and his shack to the ground as a distraction.

Unfortunately, Peter is caught. Mr. Jones puts Peter up for sale and he is bought by an old stranger. On the road, the stranger reveals himself to be a distant friend of Jefferson and let’s him go free. Peter finds his way back north and finally reunites with his family.

Finishing his story with Jacob, Peter leaves Monticello and dies six months later.

Latest Work

All Work