Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of ending slavery in the United States. Find out the background of the holiday every year on June 19 by reading the ten facts below.
What Do People Do To Celebrate?
There are a number of different ways that people celebrate the day including parades, marches, and barbecues. Many people get together for ceremonies that include public service awards, prayer, and the raising of the Juneteenth Flag.
Juneteenth – Health And Equity: Juneteenth is also celebrated to bring awareness among people regarding mental health equity for those that have been historically discriminated against.
Fact #1: After the issue of the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, however, The enslaved did not all immediately become free.
The Emancipation Proclamation freed enslaved people in states rebelling with their United States. The Union troops that were operating in these states ratified the Proclamation. The Proclamation, however, was not the case for states bordering them.
Fact #2: The Civil War ended in the summer of 1865. Union General Gordon Granger and his troops went across the border to Galveston, Texas, to announce General Orders No. 3. on June 19, 1865. June 19 was to be celebrated and referred to as Juneteenth.
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General Orders no. 3 declared: “The people of Texas are advised that in pursuance of a proclamation by the Executive of the United States, All slaves are now free. This means that there is absolute equality in rights to personal rights and rights of property between masters of the past and enslaved people. The connection that was previously existing between them is now that of employers and employees.”
Fact #3: A portion of the General Order No. 3. It encouraged newly liberated people to stay with their previous owners.
“The Freedmen should stay quiet at home and work for a wage. They are advised that they won’t be able to collect money at the military post, and they are not supported by the absence of work, either in that location or elsewhere.”
Fact #4: time following Juneteenth is referred to as the “Scatter.’
Incredulous at the recommendation to remain in place, numerous formerly enslaved people departed the region during the initial reading. In the weeks following, formerly enslaved people fled Texas in huge numbers to search for relatives and travel to America’s postbellum United States.
Fact #5: The date of Juneteenth is celebrated in many ways.
Freedom Day, Jubilee Day and Cel-Liberation day, Second Independence Day, and Emancipation Day, to name just the most popular.
Fact #6: Emancipation Park, located in Houston, Texas, was bought specifically for Juneteenth celebrations.
The 10-acre piece comprised the land was bought by ex-slaves, former slaves Richard Allen, Richard Brock, Jack Yates, and Elias Dibble for $800 in 1872.
Fact #7: Attendance decreased in the 20th century’s early Juneteenth celebrations.
The passing of Jim Crow laws dampened the celebration of freedom. Furthermore, the Great Depression forced many black farming families to leave rural and urban settings to look for employment, which resulted in difficulties in taking the day away to enjoy.
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Fact #8: The festival of Juneteenth was revived in the Civil Rights movement.
The Poor People’s March, planned by Martin Luther King Jr., was planned in time with the day of the event. Participants in the march took the celebrations back to their homelands, and then the holiday was renewed.
Fact #9: The celebrations of Juneteenth continue throughout the day.
Traditional celebrations include:
- Public readings of the Emancipation Proclamation.
- Singing traditional songs.
- Reading works of renowned African American writers.
Celebrations could be in the form of rodeos and street fairs, cookouts, family reunions, parks parties, historical reenactments, and Miss Juneteenth contests.
Fact #10. On June 17, 2021, Biden was President. Biden was the first to sign the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act, which officially declared Juneteenth a federal holiday.
The holiday was the first holiday accepted after President Ronald Reagan signed a 1983 bill that proclaimed Martin Luther King Jr. Day as an official holiday of the United States.