Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.
From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of June 19th as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond.
Today, Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement. It is a day, a week and in some areas a month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings. It is a time for reflection and rejoicing. It is a time for assessment, self-improvement and for planning the future. Its growing popularity signifies a level of maturity and dignity in America long over due. In cities across the country, people of all races, nationalities and religions are joining hands to truthfully acknowledge a period in our history that shaped and continues to influence our society today. Sensitized to the conditions and experiences of others, only then can we make significant and lasting improvements in our society.
Learn more about the history, significance and complexities of Juneteenth starting with the resources below.
What is Juneteenth?
Though this celebration was established in 1865, a broader awareness of Juneteenth has been building only recently. This Encyclopedia Britannica article provides a small summary of this annual event commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.
The History of Juneteenth
Juneteenth has evolved and gained mainstream acknowledgement since first being celebrated in Texas. Dig deeper into the significance and prominence of the event throughout its 156-year history.