U.S. Embassy India Celebrates June 19 and Honors Contributions Made by Black Americans

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Juneteenth commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas in 1865. (Unsplash/Representative Pic)

The US Embassy in India commemorated the 157th anniversary of the end of slavery in the United States on June 19. Taking to Twitter, the embassy marked Juneteenth – the annual holiday that honors the contributions made by Black Americans. “Juneteenth” is a mishmash between “June” and “nineteenth”, and it is also called Juneteenth Independence Day, Freedom Day or Emancipation Day.

“Today we commemorate the 157th anniversary of the end of slavery in the United States #Juneteenth or June 19 is an annual holiday to commemorate the contributions made by black Americans, their resilience despite their history of slavery and the continued fight against systemic racism,” the post’s caption read.

Juneteenth commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas in 1865. The annual holiday took on new meaning last year after US President Joe Biden announced it would be celebrated as a federal holiday for the first time. At the time, while singing the bill, Mr Biden said it would be “one of the highest honors of his presidency”.

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According UKTN, on this day, many public and private sector employees in the United States enjoy an extra day off while brands and cooperations take advantage of the event with festive marketing campaigns. Prayer services are also an important part of these celebrations, and certain foods have become synonymous with the celebrations, such as strawberry soda, barbecues, and meats like lamb, pork, and beef.

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Going back to the story of Juneteenth, on June 19, 1865, Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Grander, landed in Galveston, Texas with the news that the war was over and the slaves were now free. .

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Even though slavery had been officially abolished two and a half years earlier, in 1863, following President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, it was widely enforced in Texas, due to the minimal number of troops in the Union to enforce order. In fact, several slave owners also moved to Texas after Mr. Lincoln’s proclamation in order to continue their businesses.

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Texas being the last state to abolish slavery on June 19, June 19 became the official day to celebrate the emancipation of slaves.

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