Conscious News: Do You Even Know What Juneteenth Day Is?
Posted by Conscious
Posted in Wellness
How many of you even know what Juneteenth Day is? Every year we celebrate July 4th, our Independence Day, but somehow this day always seems to get lost in history. It’s now 147 years since the initial birthday of Juneteenth Day, so if you’re still unaware of what this day is, it’s time you become familiar. The holiday has been deemed a Texas holiday since 1980, but still isn’t recognized as a major holiday in our country. Hmm….I wonder why?
Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. Note that this was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation - which had become official January 1, 1863. The Emancipation Proclamation had little impact on the Texans due to the minimal number of Union troops to enforce the new Executive Order. However, with the surrender of General Lee in April of 1865, and the arrival of General Granger’s regiment,the forces were finally strong enough to influence and overcome the resistance.
Later attempts to explain this two and a half year delay in the receipt of this important news have yielded several versions that have been handed down through the years. Often told is the story of a messenger who was murdered on his way to Texas with the news of freedom. Another, is that the news wasdeliberately withheld by the enslavers to maintain the labor force on the plantations. And still another, is that federal troops actually waited for the slave owners to reap the benefits of one last cotton harvest before going to Texas to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation. All of which, or neither of these version could be true. Certainly, for some, President Lincoln’s authority over the rebellious states was in question For whatever the reasons, conditions in Texasremained status quo well beyond what was statutory.
Continue Reading: Juneteenth