Juneteenth!

What is Juneteenth?

Juneteenth, also known as Emancipation Day or Jubilee Day, commemorates June 19, 1865, the day that the people of Galveston, Texas were informed that all enslaved people were now free. The Emancipation Proclamation, signed on January 1, 1863, had legally liberated them, but the issuance of General Order No. 3 by Union General Gordon Granger finally enforced the new law in Texas.
Click the links above to view the original, handwritten documents.

Explore local celebrations!
Cleveland Freedom Fest | Akron Juneteenth Festival


Learn more about the history:

Explore other events of June 19, 1865

Read accounts from hundreds of formally enslaved people of Texas,
Part of Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936 to 1938.

Please note that these texts include difficult language and descriptions of violence.
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4



Hear directly from Laura Smalley of Hempstead, Texas, who was an enslaved child for much of 1865.
Please note that these recordings include difficult language and descriptions of violence.

Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5




FOR KIDS