Kizzie Frank - Arts & Entertainment Editor
July 4th, the American Independence Day, marked on calendars as a national holiday. Banks are closed and patriots line up at firecracker stands. Some may not know that July 4th, 1776 only marked the freedom of white Americans from the monarchy. June 19th, roughly a century later, was the day the remaining slaves were free in America. The name popularized for this "Black 4th of July" was Juneteenth. Just like July 4th, Juneteenth is celebrated with parades, cookouts, and days of service.
To spare a lengthy history lesson, there is a plethora of things to do and other ways to be educated, regardless of race. Since Juneteenth begun in Texas, there a few things to do in the Lone Star state this weekend and the days leading to it. In Houston, Texas, the Houston Museum of African American Culture is hosting a "red drink" Juneteenth celebration to honor African American ancestors. They currently need volunteers to help with a temporary fountain this Saturday, June 23rd from 4:00 to 7:00 pm. Citizens can visit the Emancipation Park in Houston Texas to observe Juneteenth history or search Facebook and Event bright for hundreds of options. If all else fails, light up the barbeque pit, play some Zydeco, and invite family over for a good time.
IMPORTANT ORDERS BY GEN. GRANGER. - THE SLAVES ALL FREE. HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF TEXAS, GALVESTON, Texas, June 19, 1865. GENERAL ORDERS, No. 3. -- The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, "all slaves are tree." 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 labor.- Source: New York Times
"Juneteenth" began in Texas over two years after Abraham Lincoln signed the "Emancipation Proclamation". Keep in mind there were no cell phones or instagram to update us on national activity, so those in Texas were unaware of what took place. There is a story of the messenger that was sent to Texas, but was murdered on his way. Either way, Union General Gordon Granger finally made it to Galveston, Texas to announce the Civil War was over, and all remaining slaves were freed.