This Saturday is Juneteenth – the day that commemorates the ending of slavery in the United States. On June 19, 1865, federal troops arrived in the small town of Galveston, Texas to announce that the state’s enslaved Black people were free. The Emancipation Proclamation ended slavery two and half years earlier but it was not implemented everywhere and news had not reached all corners of the country.
Black communities have celebrated Juneteenth since its first anniversary. It’s important for all of us to recognize this holiday as a reminder of the country’s history of enslavement of African and Black Americans, and remember that the fight for freedom and justice are not over.
In the past, Neighborhood House has marked Juneteenth annually with an event co-hosted with Seattle Housing Authority at Yesler Terrace. This year, we are working with the Washington Department of Health to have a mobile COVID vaccination van come out to Juneteenth celebration at Othello Park, in addition to offering other resources. Read more about the event here.