Juneteenth is quite literally the mixture between June and nineteenth, hence the phrase Juneteenth! Juneteenth itself recognizes when slaves in Texas first learned of their freedom. Texas was literally the LAST standing safehaven for slave owners (kind of).
We will address the “kind of” in a different post as that is a whole other story by itself. The official day the enslaved in Texas learned of their freedom was June 19th, 1865, 2 YEARS AFTER THE EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION!
Granted we were fighting in a Civil War at the time the Proclamation was passed (Jan 1, 1863). That being said, Gen. Lee surrendered on April 9th, 1865, and the South suffered defeat which meant the freedom of the enslaved all across the nation. So why was Texas 2 months late?
There are a bunch of theories, the main two are that, the messenger sent to tell the enslaved they were now free had been killed, OR, the Union wanted to let Texan slave owners reap ONE LAST CROP with enslaved labor. Either way, June 19th is when the message was finally delivered by Gen. Granger in Texas!
Juneteenth has been celebrated and regarded as the day of freedom ever since! Some even refer to it as Independence day for black people. It is the longest standing holiday celebrating the abolition of slavery, that being said it isn’t yet a national holiday??
There is no clear reason as to why it isn’t (though i’m sure you could guess). In fact not even all states recognize the day as a holiday! Montana, Hawaii, North and South Dakota to be specific. Funny considering how even companies like TWITTER AND SQUARE CONSIDER IT A COMPANY HOLIDAY though, but the US can’t be bothered!
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