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Here's What You Might Not Know About Juneteenth

Here's What You Might Not Know About Juneteenth

"The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free."

Posted on June 19, 2018, at 11:46 a.m. ET

Brian Harris, 8, waits for the parade to begin during the 2011 Denver Juneteenth celebration.
Kathryn Scott Osler / Getty Images

Brian Harris, 8, waits for the parade to begin during the 2011 Denver Juneteenth celebration.

On June 19, 1865, the enslaved African-Americans in Galveston, Texas, finally learned the news that they were a free people, nearly three years after President Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation.

While Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee had formally surrendered to the Union Army on April 9, news traveled slowly throughout the South and did not reach the coastal region of Texas until over a month later, when Union Army Gen. Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston with an occupying force of 2,000 federal troops. It was there that Granger enacted General Order No. 3, effectively emancipating all slaves in the region: "The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free."

Today, the holiday of Juneteenth commemorates the events of June 1865, and celebrates the emancipation of all slaves in the US. The holiday is marked by a joyous celebration of life and culture, filled with music, dancing, parades, and food. These pictures capture the spirit and energy of Juneteenth and show how one of America's oldest holidays is celebrated.

Young men from the Like Brothers dance team march in the 2015 Juneteenth celebration parade in Denver.
Joe Amon / Getty Images

Young men from the Like Brothers dance team march in the 2015 Juneteenth celebration parade in Denver.

Rebekah Johnson, the 2008 Miss Juneteenth, rides down 26th Avenue in Denver on the back of a convertible.
Kathryn Scott Osler / Getty Images

Rebekah Johnson, the 2008 Miss Juneteenth, rides down 26th Avenue in Denver on the back of a convertible.

Kanyia Rudd, 8, right, leads the Open Door Step Group during the Juneteenth Parade, in the historic Five Points neighborhood of Denver.
Craig F. Walker / Getty Images

Kanyia Rudd, 8, right, leads the Open Door Step Group during the Juneteenth Parade, in the historic Five Points neighborhood of Denver.

Darryl Thomas grills more than 160 pounds of ribs, brisket, and chicken for the Omega Psi Phi fraternity during the Juneteenth celebration at Franklin Park in Boston on June 17, 2017.
Boston Globe / Getty Images

Darryl Thomas grills more than 160 pounds of ribs, brisket, and chicken for the Omega Psi Phi fraternity during the Juneteenth celebration at Franklin Park in Boston on June 17, 2017.

Jonas Felix leads the Buffalo Soldiers of the American West during the 2010 Juneteenth Parade in Denver.
Craig F. Walker / Getty Images

Jonas Felix leads the Buffalo Soldiers of the American West during the 2010 Juneteenth Parade in Denver.

People attend Juneteenth celebrations at Nicholl Park in Richmond, California, on June 19, 2004.
David Paul Morris

People attend Juneteenth celebrations at Nicholl Park in Richmond, California, on June 19, 2004.

Capt. Kevin Duncan of the Denver Fire Department greets April Charmaine, while driving a 1941 fire engine in the 2010 Juneteenth Parade.
Craig F. Walker / Getty Images

Capt. Kevin Duncan of the Denver Fire Department greets April Charmaine, while driving a 1941 fire engine in the 2010 Juneteenth Parade.

Jesse Buckmon (left) leads members of the Syrian Temple No. 49 down Welton Street during the 2010 Juneteenth Parade in Denver.
Craig F. Walker / Getty Images

Jesse Buckmon (left) leads members of the Syrian Temple No. 49 down Welton Street during the 2010 Juneteenth Parade in Denver.

Joshua Cartwright, left, leads the way for other members of Extreme Heat of the JC Step Agency, during the 2017 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.
Kathryn Scott / Getty Images

Joshua Cartwright, left, leads the way for other members of Extreme Heat of the JC Step Agency, during the 2017 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.

Parade participants in the 2012 Juneteenth celebration in Denver leave Manual High School and march down 26th Avenue to Welton Street.
Kathryn Scott Osler / Getty Images

Parade participants in the 2012 Juneteenth celebration in Denver leave Manual High School and march down 26th Avenue to Welton Street.

Donald Cunningham (left) and his fellow Capitol Pool Checkers Club members celebrate Juneteenth at Walker Mill Regional Park in District Heights, Maryland, on June 18, 2016.
The Washington Post / Getty Images

Donald Cunningham (left) and his fellow Capitol Pool Checkers Club members celebrate Juneteenth at Walker Mill Regional Park in District Heights, Maryland, on June 18, 2016.

Anaja Campbell (far right) and the Denver Dancing Diamonds perform during the 2015 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.
Joe Amon / Getty Images

Anaja Campbell (far right) and the Denver Dancing Diamonds perform during the 2015 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.

Kaliah Gude, 5, gets some dazzle before her parade performance with the Dazzling Diamonds during the 2017 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.
Kathryn Scott / Getty Images

Kaliah Gude, 5, gets some dazzle before her parade performance with the Dazzling Diamonds during the 2017 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.

Supporters of President Barack Obama carry signs and hand out stickers during the 2012 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.
Kathryn Scott Osler / Getty Images

Supporters of President Barack Obama carry signs and hand out stickers during the 2012 Juneteenth celebration in Denver.

Trinity Holmes, 9, has flowers painted on her cheek during the 2009 Juneteenth in Denver.
Hyoung Chang / Getty Images

Trinity Holmes, 9, has flowers painted on her cheek during the 2009 Juneteenth in Denver.

Miss Juneteenth 2015, Sean-Maree Swinger-Otey, 17, waves at parade watchers in Denver, 2015.
Kathryn Scott Osler / Getty Images

Miss Juneteenth 2015, Sean-Maree Swinger-Otey, 17, waves at parade watchers in Denver, 2015.

Taj McDonald, 15, plays with his cousins Nyofre Okadbarry, 6, Jaida Okadbarry, 4, and Darrius Luke, 7, during Juneteenth celebrations in Boston on June 19, 2010.
Boston Globe / Getty Images

Taj McDonald, 15, plays with his cousins Nyofre Okadbarry, 6, Jaida Okadbarry, 4, and Darrius Luke, 7, during Juneteenth celebrations in Boston on June 19, 2010.


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