The state of Texas was first to start this celebration and it became a state holiday in 1890.
The Juneteenth Celebration is the oldest commemoration that nationally celebrates the ending of slavery in America. It has become the African American equivalent to Independence Day.
Today, Juneteenth celebrations are growing with a lot of organizations and communities throughout the country. The Henry Ford Museum, Smithsonian, and other institutions have begun sponsoring Juneteenth activities, including the city of Valdosta.
Valdosta plans on supporting the celebration by having a community festival in downtown Valdosta, Georgia, by the Old Courthouse on June 23.
There will be an NAACP booth there giving individuals the opportunity to register and vote in the upcoming election in the fall.
The future of Juneteenth looks very bright as the celebrations are emerging among a lot of cities and states. They are creating bonds, understanding and educating others on the meaning of Juneteenth.
By: Maya Kellam (VSU)
Morgan McFarland (VSU)
Press & Publicity Coordinator