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Juneteenth

Juneteenth Emancipation Day - Celebrating Freedom

Juneteenth (a blending of the words June and nineteenth) is the oldest known celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.

It is also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day and Cel-Liberation Day.

It commemorates June 19, 1865, the day that Union Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger rode into Galveston, Texas, and told slaves of their emancipation from slavery.  Texas was the last state in rebellion, following the end of the Civil War, to allow enslavement. Although the rumors of freedom were widespread prior to this, actual emancipation was not announced in the last state practicing enslavement until General Gordon Granger came to Galveston, Texas and issued General Order #3, on the "19th of June", almost two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation.

Juneteenth is a holiday in 46 states across the nation. The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture says that the holiday marks our country’s second independence day. It has long been celebrated among the African American community. (Sources: NJOF and NMAAHC)

 

Juneteenth Day Celebration in Texas. 1900.
Photo: Juneteenth day celebration in Texas. 1900.
National Museum of African American History and Culture

How is the celebration observed today?

Modern observance is primarily in local celebrations. Traditions include public readings of the Emancipation Proclamation, singing traditional songs such as "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" and "Lift Every Voice and Sing", and reading of works by noted African-American writers such as Ralph Ellison and Maya Angelou. Celebrations include rodeos, street fairs, cookouts, family reunions, park parties, and historical reenactments. (Wikipedia)

DEOMI Products

activity-book-juneteenth.pdf preview
observance-juneteenth-poster-2023.pdf preview
presentation-juneteenth.pdf preview

Articles of interest

Historical Milestone and Figures

  • Frederick Douglass

    Frederick Douglass spent his life fighting for justice and equality. Born into slavery in 1818, he escaped as a young man and became a leading voice in the abolitionist movement.

  • Lt. Henry O. Flipper

    Born into slavery in Thomasville, Georgia, on March 21, 1856, Henry Ossian Flipper was appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1873.

  • The Emancipation Proclamation

    President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, as the nation approached its third year of bloody civil war. The proclamation declared "that all persons held as slaves" within the rebellious states "are, and henceforward shall be free."

  • The Legacy Museum website

    From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration is situated on a site in Montgomery where enslaved people were once warehoused. A block from one of the most prominent slave auction spaces in America, the Legacy Museum is steps away from an Alabama dock and rail station where tens of thousands of black people were trafficked during the 19th century.

Proclamation and Memorandum

The official logo of the United States White House.
memo-juneteenth-2023.pdf preview

Resources

American History through an African American Lens

The National Museum of African American History and Culture will be a place where all Americans can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience, what it means to their lives and how it helped us shape this nation.

History.com

Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed.

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

Juneteenth marks our country’s second independence day. Though it has long been celebrated among the African American community, it is a history that has been marginalized and still remains largely unknown to the wider public.

Teaching Tolerance

Teaching Juneteenth: The history of Juneteenth acknowledges hard history while also empowering students to be advocates for change.

The Legacy Museum

From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration is situated on a site in Montgomery where enslaved people were once warehoused.  A block from one of the most prominent slave auction spaces in America, the Legacy Museum is steps away from an Alabama dock and rail station where tens of thousands of black people were trafficked during the 19th century.

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