Juneteenth is a holiday celebrating the ending of slavery in the United States. These photographs share the history behind this day and how the holiday has been observed throughout the years. On June 19, 1865, Union Army soldiers, led by General Gordon Granger, reached Galveston, Texas and shared the news that the Civil War was over and that President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 declared that all enslaved persons should now be free. Although the transition to freedom was a long process that extended beyond the Civil War, celebrations broke out among the newly freed men and women as the news spread, and Juneteenth became a day of jubilation. On December 6, 1865, slavery in the United States was formally abolished with the adoption of the 13th Amendment. Today, Juneteenth offers an opportunity to reflect on past injustices and the need to continue addressing them today, to advocate for change, and to educate society about racial discrimination and how to combat systemic injustice and inequality.
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