Celebrating Juneteenth in Boston
Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 that Union soldiers, led by General Gordon Granger, reached Galveston, Texas. They announced to the state that the Civil War was over and that all enslaved persons had been declared free.
Although the Emancipation Proclamation had become official over two years prior, the institution of slavery remained untouched in areas beyond Union control. In taking control over the state, the Union effectively liberated the remaining slaves in Texas. They also ended this specific form of slavery in America.
For the first time, the City of Boston will officially observe Juneteenth as a state holiday on June 21, 2021, as allowed by the Commonwealth’s order issued in 2020. Juneteenth is a day to gather with loved ones, celebrate Black lives, and reflect and recognize the struggle for liberation in America.