A Celebration event held annually on the nineteenth of June by African Americans (especially in the southern states), to commemorate emancipation from slavery in Texas on that day in 1865.
Why is this important?
Juneteenth, also known as Juneteenth Independence Day or Freedom Day, is a day that commemorates the June 19, 1865, announcement of the abolition of slavery in the U.S. and more generally the emancipation of enslaved African-Americans throughout the former Confederacy of the southern United States. Its name is a portmanteau of "June" and "nineteenth", the date of its celebration. The news of General Robert E. Lee's surrender on April 9 moved slowly and did not reach Texas until May 1865. The Army of the Trans-Mississippi did not surrender until June 2. On June 18, Union Army General Gordon Granger arrived at Galveston Island with 2,000 federal troops to occupy Texas on behalf of the federal government. The following day, standing on the balcony of Galveston's Ashton Villa, Granger read aloud the contents of "General Order No. 3", announcing the total emancipation of those held as slaves:
By the 1950s and 1960s, the Civil Rights Movement focused the attention of African-American youth on the struggle for racial equality and the future, but many linked these struggles to the historical struggles of their ancestors. Following the 1968 Poor People's Campaign to Washington D.C. called by Rev. Ralph Abernathy, many attendees returned home and initiated Juneteenth celebrations in areas where the day was not previously celebrated.
Since the 1980s and 1990s, the holiday has been more widely celebrated among African-American communities.
This should be a national holiday.
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