Happy Juneteenth!

Published June 19, 2024 under Blog

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Happy Juneteenth! In honor of the holiday recognize and uplift the ongoing fights for equality that Black and African Americans in the U.S. are a part of today.

Happy Juneteenth! In honor of the holiday, here is a quick history of Juneteenth and Juneteenth celebrations.

History of Juneteenth

In 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by President Lincoln, declaring freedom for all enslaved people in the United States. But while the proclamation held significant symbolic meaning, it had limited practical effects and did not directly outlaw slavery or lead to the legal freedom of those enslaved. With the passage of the 13th Amendment in 1865, slavery was officially abolished in all U.S. states. This news was spread across the country and on June 19th, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas to announce that all people who were enslaved there were now freed. This announcement marked the emancipation of the last group of people enslaved in the U.S. The day henceforth became known as Juneteenth.

Juneteenth Celebrations

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, and Emancipation Day, has long been celebrated in Black and African American communities across the U.S. The first celebrations of Juneteenth took place in Texas in 1866 through church and community gatherings. Now, Juneteenth is celebrated through community events like barbecues, parades, and city-wide festivals. Despite longstanding celebrations for the day, it took until 2021 for Juneteenth to become a federal holiday, when President Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act. Juneteenth is now nationally recognized as a day of major significance in the fight for freedom and equality for Black and African Americans. In addition to celebrating the day’s historical significance, Juneteenth celebrations today also recognize and uplift the ongoing fights for equality that Black and African Americans in the U.S. are a part of today.

To learn more about Juneteenth, visit these resources:

Juneteenth History: Why Doesn’t Everyone Know About Texas?

Juneteenth Digital Toolkit

Juneteenth Flag

This blog was authored by Kanan Brent, HealthConnect One’s Leadership Coordinator and Board Liaison.

Sources:

National Museum of African American History and Culture

NY Times

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