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Fugitive Slave Act

Abolition was a powerful movement in pre-Civil War Detroit, although it was not necessarily popular with the entire population. Among the proponents were a group of city leaders and their wives. As a result, Detroit was one of several northern cities that became places of refuge for runaway slaves. Initially, once a slave reached a slave-free state or territory, they were generally safe. But the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 changed everything. Now a slave could only be free by leaving the country, i.e. escaping to Canada. Detroit became one of several U.S. cities to play a major role in the Underground Railroad, both because of geography and a group of citizens faithful to the cause. Read More 
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Mimi Balard

Hiding slaves
THE ALLARDS BOOK SIX: THE MEDALLION, covers the period 1833-1859, a very interesting time in the history of Detroit. The predominate thread is the abolition question and the underground railroad with its work smuggling runaway slaves across the border into Canada. As a boy I heard my Grandmother’s family tell stories of slaves hidden in barns, but my interest became acute during a special exhibit at the Detroit Historical Museum. Reading a collection of documents of the time, I happened upon a list of French-Canadian women, active in the movement. Scrolling down the list name hit me like lightning, Madame Balard (not to confuse with Allard). Elizabeth Balard was my Grandfather’s great-great grandmother. Born Elizabeth Thomas to a English man married to a French-Canadian Detroiter, she is “Mimi” Balard in the book and one of the most outrageous and loveable characters of the story.  Read More 
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The Allards Book Six: The Medallion

The Medallion
THE ALLARDS BOOK SIX: THE MEDALLION:
The trailer
In 1833 Therese Allard is twenty-seven years old. Recently widowed, she lives with eight children on her late husband’s farm. Following the second brutal cholera epidemic in three years, her outspoken mother sends Sean Logan, a rich Irish abolitionist, to turn Therese’s farm into a station on Detroit’s growing Underground Railroad and to turn Therese’s sad life into one of adventure and romance.
During this significant period of regional growth amid the conflict between pro-slavery forces of the South and the abolitionist sympathies of Detroit, a group of French-Swiss families leave their homes to join the hordes of European immigrants arriving in Detroit where they blend with the Allards and their neighbors.
All of Dr. Kreis’ books are available in print and Kindle format on Amazon.com. Read More 
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The Medallion

The Medallion
Final question: Is the Medallion real?
This is the most common question I am asked. The Medallion provides a thread or fil conducteur, as the French would say, to all eight books of the Allards series as well as Fearful Passage North. I began blogging about the Allards series a few years ago. At the end of Book Five: The CITY IN THE WILDERNESS, I was sidetracked to my newer works, but now it is time to return to the Allards with Book Six: THE MEDALLION. So in short, stay tuned.
By the way, you can read the blogs on the earlier Allards series on my website: www.wilmontkreis.com. Go to Blog and scroll way down the left column past the photos to “tags” and find books 1-5 listed. Thanks for stopping by. Read More 
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