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Freedom Day: Celebrating Juneteenth

The Emancipation Proclamation — that all enslaved people in Confederate states be freed — was signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, but it took two and a half years for the news of freedom to reach everywhere. Juneteenth (June 19th) commemorates the day that federal troops finally arrived in Galveston, Texas, in 1865 to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation and free the enslaved people there. Juneteenth became a federal holiday in 2021, and families across the country celebrate “Freedom Day” with community gatherings, parades, freedom walks, festivals — and sharing books together. To learn more: