History of Juneteenth

Happy Juneteenth!

Last year, on the heels of the George Floyd Black Lives Matter protests, June nineteenth (known as Juneteenth) was made a federal holiday. However, this date has been significant to the Black community long before it was made a national holiday.  Here's a quick little deep dive about the history of Juneteenth and what you should know about it: 

Juneteenth (also known as Emancipation Day) is a holiday celebrating the end of slavery in the United States.  Often we attribute the end of slavery in the United States with the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863.  While it's true that the proclamation ended the enslavement of Africans in the United States, this information was not properly distributed to enslaved individuals and the practice of slavery in the United States- particularly in Texas- continued for another two years. 

On June 19, 1865 General Granger arrived in Galveston and read General Order No. 3 which stated: 

“The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.”

June nineteenth became a day of celebration as over 250,000 enslaved individuals in Texas were finally freed. 

Juneteenth serves as reminder of the resilience of Black people in America, the need to continually do the work to fight racism, and to honor the history of Black people in America. 

Happy Juneteenth, friends.