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The Official Flag and Explanation of Juneteenth
Why is it called Juneteenth?
Texas was the last Confederate state where the proclamation was announced, and the first to recognize the date of June 19 – Juneteenth – statewide. The inaugural Juneteenth to commemorate the official day enslaved people in Galveston were freed began in 1866. The holiday, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, spread across the country as African Americans migrated away from the South.
Why is Juneteenth important?
It is a lesser-known fact that the Emancipation Proclamation did not result in all enslaved African Americans being freed. Juneteenth is part of recognizing the conditions underwent by some Americans unknowingly liberated by law. The proclamation, moreover,guaranteed freedom to enslaved people in secessionist states like Texas, but not Union states like Maryland, which did not secede during the Civil War. The 13th Amendment, ratified in 1865, freed all enslaved people in the country.
When did Juneteenth become a federal holiday?
Congress passed The Juneteenth National Independence Day Act in June 2021, a day after the Senate passed the bill with unanimous consent. Biden signed the bill into law on June 17 – two days before Juneteenth.