June 19th is an important day in the life of many African-Americans as it's the day when the last slaves were freed in Texas nearly TWO years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed.
There's debate as to why it took two years, some say that the reason is still unknown while others say that it's because two months after the war ended, Texas landowners still wanted another harvest and deliberately withheld the information from slaves.
According to Juneteenth.com, when Union leader Major General Gordon Granger arrived to Texas, he read the people General Order Number 3 which said,
"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 free laborer."
And while many of the slaves didn't have anywhere to go, some set for the North as it was the representation of freedom at the time and some set to Louisiana, Arkansas, and Oklahoma in search of family members.
Now every June 19th, communities across America celebrate the day of freedom with festivities, parades, food, and more.
For more information about the significance of this day, go to Juneteenth.com
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