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First Juneteenth Celebrations (1865) Options
Posted: Friday, June 19, 2015 12:00:00 AM
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First Juneteenth Celebrations (1865)

Also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, Juneteenth is a US holiday that commemorates the day when the slaves of Texas learned that they were legally free. Although President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation was formally issued on Jan 1, 1863, it had little immediate effect on slaves' day-to-day lives. In Texas, it was not until June 19, 1865, when Union General Gordon Granger and 2,000 federal troops took over the state, that it was enforced. How is Juneteenth often celebrated? More...
Shamshad Ali Afridi
Posted: Friday, June 19, 2015 5:42:16 AM

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Abraham Lincoln in Charleston, Illinois

"“I will say, then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races—that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of Negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this, that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”
Posted: Friday, June 19, 2015 12:54:03 PM

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A range of activities were provided to entertain the masses, many of which continue in tradition today. Rodeos, fishing, barbecuing and baseball are just a few of the typical Juneteenth activities you may witness today. Juneteenth almost always focused on education and self improvement. Thus, often guest speakers are brought in and the elders are called upon to recount the events of the past. Prayer services were also a major part of these celebrations.

Certain foods became popular and subsequently synonymous with Juneteenth celebrations such as strawberry soda-pop. More traditional and just as popular was the barbecuing, through which Juneteenth participants could share in the spirit and aromas that their ancestors – the newly emancipated African Americans, would have experienced during their ceremonies. Hence, the barbecue pit is often established as the center of attention at Juneteenth celebrations.

Food was abundant because everyone prepared a special dish. Meats such as lamb, pork and beef which not available everyday were brought on this special occasion. A true Juneteenth celebrations left visitors well satisfied and with enough conversation to last until the next.

Dress was also an important element in early Juneteenth customs and is often still taken seriously, particularly by the direct descendants who can make the connection to this tradition’s roots. During slavery there were laws on the books in many areas that prohibited or limited the dressing of the enslaved. During the initial days of the emancipation celebrations, there are accounts of former slaves tossing their ragged garments into the creeks and rivers to adorn clothing taken from the plantations belonging to their former ‘masters’.

Posted: Friday, June 19, 2015 4:17:12 PM

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Lincoln was a Republican. Brick wall
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