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Student Life

Juneteenth

On June 19, 1865, the Emancipation Proclamation was put into effect when enslaved African-Americans in Galveston, Texas, were told that the Civil War had ended, and that they were free. 

More than one hundred and fifty years later, June 19 – "Juneteenth" – is observed across the country as a joyful holiday that celebrates freedom.

message from the president      resources

a message from the president

Headshot of Christina RoyalOn June 19, 1865, the Emancipation Proclamation was put into effect when enslaved African-Americans in Galveston, Texas, were told that the Civil War had ended, and that they were free. 

More than one hundred and fifty years later, June 19 – "Juneteenth" – is observed across the country as a joyful holiday that celebrates freedom. 

The Emancipation Proclamation did not erase the centuries of violence and subjugation upon which our country was built. Nor did it bridle the cultivation and insidious growth of systemic racism at every level of our nation's policies, which to this day prevent the United States from being a place of true freedom for all. There is, doubtless, work still to be done. 

Today, Juneteenth is reserved as a day to celebrate and honor Black freedom, Black excellence, and Black joy. Across the country, parades will be held on city streets, picnics will take place in family backyards, and descendants of those who were told they were free on June 19, 1865 will make the pilgrimage to Galveston to honor their ancestors. 

If you're looking for a way to celebrate Juneteenth this weekend, please explore joining us in the following:

It is crucial that while doing the ongoing work of naming and dismantling systemic racism, we allow ourselves pauses to rest, to practice self care, and to celebrate. For those who may want to learn more about Juneteenth, find resources below.

Christina Royal
President, Holyoke Community College

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