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George DeBaptiste

George DeBaptiste
George DeBaptiste
I first encountered this iconic figure in the Detroit Historical Collection long before beginning THE ALLARDS SERIES. Once into the project, I realized the Underground Railroad and its French connection would eventually be a part of the series. Introducing George’s family early in the books was my invention and not necessarily accurate. He was born a free black in Virginia and did work his way into the abolition movement including the Second Baptist Church, the Underground Railroad and Detroit’s black regiment. Much of his part in BOOK SIX, is accurate. You can find an excellent summary of his life at http://detroithistorical.org/learn/encyclopedia-of-detroit/debaptiste-george. Read More 
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Therese Allard's barn

Therese's barn
Therese Allard’s Barn
Therese’s barn as a station in the Underground Railroad struck me when I found her mother (the wonderful, Mimi Balard) listed in a document about French women in the abolition movement at an exhibit on the underground railroad of Detroit. The barn in Book 6 is a conglomerate of many things used in various facilities and is probably more complex than any. The stories surrounding it come from tales of my ancestors along with various stories of the movement as a whole. Sean Logan is fictitious (sorry). Read More 
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Detroit Market at Cadillac Square

Detroit Market at Cadillac Square
Detroit Market at Cadillac Square:
The marketplace for French-Canadian Detroiters and others to sell their produce and wares, it was also a hot bed of socializing and gossip. Along with intrigue and plots from smuggling slaves from Detroit to Canada in 1850 to smuggling liquor from Canada to Detroit in 1920. It eventually moved to what endures as the Eastern Market today. My Great-grandmother was filled with stories of the market and related shenanigans which appear from BOOK SIX to the end of the Allard series in BOOK EIGHT: THE CHIEF. This photo of the market in 1870, from the Detroit Historical Collection, shows Cadillac square with two wagons in the left lower corner getting ready to unload. Read More 
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