On January 1, 1863, President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation officially declared the end of slavery in Confederate states in rebellion against the Union. Unfortunately, hundreds of thousands of African Americans remained enslaved for over two and a half years until Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, with news that the Civil War had ended and slavery was over.
The following year in Texas, the annual celebration, then called Jubilee Day, began. Over time, this celebration spread across the South and beyond and continues till this day. Today we know it as Juneteenth, and African Americans use this day as a time to celebrate, often marked by parades, street fairs, and family get-togethers.
Today, we celebrate Juneteenth, and we’ll continue to use our voice for racial equality for all Black people in America.
CELEBRATE JUNETEENTH IN YOUR CITY
Explore events in your city to uplift, embrace culture, and celebrate Freedom Day!