Recognizing Juneteenth on June 19

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Recognizing Juneteenth on June 19

Juneteenth honors the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States. The name “Juneteenth” is a blend of two words: “June” and “nineteenth.” It is believed to be the oldest African-American holiday, with annual celebrations on June 19th in different parts of the country dating back to 1866.

The Juneteenth anniversary commemorates the arrival of 2,000 troops in Galveston, Texas to announce that 250,000 enslaved black people in that state were now free by executive order. In the immediate years that followed, there were signs of hope for former slaves. In 1870, the 15th Amendment passed, stating, “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” Soon after the passage of the 15th Amendment, 500,000 black men registered to vote, helping to elect 2,000 Black men to public office. The passing of the 15th Amendment was only a start to progress that was made in the following years.

In recognition of Juneteenth, ABCUSA staff will not be working on Wednesday, June 19. We hope that you will join us to take time this Juneteenth to celebrate and remember the past, embracing the history and hope of “Freedom Day.”

Learn more about the historical legacy of Juneteenth here.