Juneteenth 2020 also known as freedom day is a paid holiday in the United States of America. This day is celebrated in remembrance of those who were enslaved in the United States.
Also, this day recognizes the end of slavery all across the country. It has been observing on June 19 since 1865.
History of Juneteenth
During the American civil war, President Abraham Lincoln issued the emancipation proclamation. This proclamation declared more than three million slaves living in the confederate states to be free.
However, the proclamation didn’t free any slaves instantly. The places under the confederate control freed some of the slaves. But those near the border areas were under union control.
Moreover, lincoln’s proclamation had already outlawed slavery in texas and other states to be free in rebellion against union. At the end of the American civil war, texas had the less number of union troops.
As a result, the number of enslaved started increasing on texas as the slaveholders and enslaved started migrating from the eastern side. By the year 1865, the number of enslaved reached to 250000 in Texas.
Union Army General Gordon Granger on June 18 arrived at texas with 2000 troops to occupy it on the behalf of the federal government. On the following day June 19, the granger standing on the balcony of Ashton villa read aloud the order of emancipation.
General order no. 3The people of Texas in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labour. The freedmen are advise and shall remain quiet at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.
Although the announcement on June 19 on texas freed the slaves over there, it didn’t free people living on the union held territory. On December 18, 18655 after the 13th amendment of the constitution of the United State gave a legal status regarding freedom of the slave. The 13th amendment declared the end of slavery.
Celebration of Juneteenth 2020
Juneteeth takes back to the day of the end of slavery in the United States. It is also the day of African American emancipation day. Also it the oldest running holiday. Most importantly, it is also the second independence of America.
This day carries three goals; to celebrate; to educate and to agitate. People celebrate by reciting the emancipation proclamation, singing traditional songs.
Moreover, celebrations also include a family picnic, reunion, street festivals, parades, and many more. Those families who have been enslaved often make a visit to Gladstone on this day.
Is it a national holiday?
In 1980 Texas became the first state to declare Juneteenth as a state holiday. According to the latest news, in 2019 New Hampshire became the latest state to declare it as a state holiday.
Although this day holds great importance in the United States, this year thousands continue to protest racism. It is because of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis a month ago.
This year Juneteenth 2020 celebration has taken a new significance as it is triggered by the black man’s death by a white police officer.