Archives Preserve Juneteenth History
Explore how libraries protect and share vital information about Juneteenth and Black history.
Juneteenth: June 19th, 1865
Juneteenth is a celebration of the day that General Order No. 3 was issued, telling the people of Texas that all those enslaved were now free. It is also called Freedom Day, or Emancipation Day, and is the oldest celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.
The historic General Order No. 3 was a handwritten document issued by Major General Gordon Granger, and it is preserved today in the National Archives Building in Washington, D.C. It has also been digitally scanned and is available in the National Archives Catalog.
What a Juneteenth Archive Does
National Archives aren’t the only ones responsible for preserving Juneteenth history. Libraries around the United States contain collections of archival documents about Juneteenth and Black history. For example, Texas A&M University Library has a variety of documents relating to Juneteenth celebrations and the long and difficult history of Emancipation. Public libraries are also important sources for archival preservation; the Arlington Public Library hosts the Arlington Black History Community Archive, which preserves the history of Arlington’s Black community.
These archives preserve an important part of our nation’s history and keep these documents accessible for our children’s education. Celebrate Juneteenth this year by using your library to learn about the history of this long-lasting celebration.
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