Strangers in the House: A Prairie Story of Bigotry and Belonging
A renowned author investigates the dark and shocking history of her prairie house.
When researching the first occupant of her Saskatoon home, Candace Savage discovers a family more fascinating and heartbreaking than she expected
Napol on Sureau dit Blondin built the house in the 1920s, an era when French-speakers like him were deemed "undesirable" by the political and social elite, who sought to populate the Canadian prairies with WASPs only. In an atmosphere poisoned first by the Orange Order and then by the Ku Klux Klan, Napol on and his young family adopted anglicized names and did their best to disguise their "foreignness."
In Strangers in the House, Savage scours public records and historical accounts and interviews several of Napol on's descendants, including his youngest son, to reveal a family story marked by challenge and resilience. In the process, she examines a troubling episode in Canadian history, one with surprising relevance today.
Published in Partnership with the David Suzuki Institute