Dating Back To 1865, It Was On June 19th That The Union Soldiers, Led By Major General Gordon Granger, Went Into Galveston, Texas With News That The Civil War Had Ended And That The Slaves 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 General Order Read:
"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."
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.
Today, 42 States Recognize Juneteenth As Either A State Holiday Or State Holiday Observance. Some Of These Include Texas, Oklahoma, Florida, Delaware, Idaho, Alaska, Iowa, California, Wyoming, Missouri, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, New Jersey, New York, Colorado, Arkansas, Oregon, Kentucky, Michigan, New Mexico, Virginia, Washington, Tennessee, Massachusetts, Vermont, North Carolina And The District Of Columbia.
"In Order For Black History To Live, We Must Continue To Breathe Life Into It." -- Hubert Gaddy, Jr.