"Juneteenth [is] the day in 1865 that soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, to announce the end of the Civil War and abolish slavery. Though the Emancipation Proclamation was made effective two and a half years before this date, it had not successfully been enforced throughout all the United States until significantly later. Therefore, Juneteenth is the official celebration of the end of slavery throughout the United States.
Other than marking a pivotal date of significance in American history, Juneteenth also serves as an opportunity for African Americans to cherish their culture, heritage, and celebrate Black joy."
As a team, we wanted to take this day to continue the learning that led us to add Juneteenth as an observed holiday in the first place. So, over the last few weeks, we've each chosen a resource and plan to dig into them this weekend. We wanted to share with this community in case you'd like to spend some time this weekend learning, celebrating, and reflecting, too!
- If you have kids, Charnaie has 12 great book suggestions to read together that honor Juneteenth, celebrate freedom, or center Black joy right here.
- Many regional and state parks are waiving admission fees on Juneteenth to make it easier for people to connect as a community and strengthen family connections. A search might turn up parks near you that are participating!
- The Black Archives Instagram account offers a neat daily glimpse into so many moments of the Black experience, from the everyday to the historic.
- Hidden Figures is the incredible and inspiring untold true story about three women at NASA who were instrumental in one of history's greatest operations - the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit. Rated PG - watch on Disney+!
- For more recent history, pick up Michelle Obama's memoir, Becoming, for a glimpse into her journey from the South Side of Chicago to the world's most famous address.
- More book recs from our team: Homegoing, Yaa Gyasi's incredible debut novel that follows two separated half-sisters for eight generations, beginning in eighteenth-century Ghana. We also love The Vanishing Half, The Warmth of Other Suns, Black Cake, and Sisters in Arms.
- Marissa and her kids are visiting the Missouri History Museum, which is planning several events to celebrate Juneteenth. Check locally to find an event or exhibit near you!
- High on the Hog is a fascinating, inspiring, and drool-inducing look at how African-American cuisine transformed America. Emily and her husband devoured all four episodes in a week. (Available on Netflix!)
If you'd like to, please share any favorite resources around Black history and joy that have inspired you or taught you something in the comments below. Let's learn from each other! Wishing a happy Juneteenth to the Black members of this community, especially!
P.S. One more fun way to celebrate - nabbing something from Tabitha Brown's colorful collection at Target!