What is Juneteenth and what does it mean?
Juneteenth is the celebration of the abolition of slavery here in the United States. Every year on June 19th families come together to celebrate the resilience of our ancestors who survived and persevered during one of the darkest times of our nations history. On June 19, 1865, the federal troops arrived in Texas to ensure that all enslaved people were free. Enslaved Texans found out they had been free for over two years. The Emancipation Proclamation - which had been issued on January 1st, 1863 was then read to enslaved African-Americans in Texas by Gordon Granger.
Gordon Granger read:
"The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired laborer."
Juneteenth is also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day and Cel-Liberation Day. The festivities include focusing on education and self improvement, fishing, barbecuing, baseball and rodeos.
We take time to reflect on where we are as a business, a community, and a nation and how we can work together to better live out our country's values of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.