DeKALB – Nearly 150 have begun marching from Clinton Rosette Middle School to Hopkins Park in DeKalb for the Juneteenth Freedom March organized by the local Black Lives Matter chapter.
The group plans to march from the middle school to the park and also hold an educational ceremony to share the significance of the day with the crowd.
Juneteenth is an annual celebration June 19, which marks the day slaves were freed from Texas, the final state to do so two years after the Emancipation Proclamation, the Civil War era proclamation which declared all slaves free in Confederate territory.
Former President Abraham Lincoln first issued the Emancipation Proclamation on Sept. 22, 1862, and it became effective the following Jan. 1. But it wasn’t enforced in many places until after the Civil War ended in April 1865. Word didn’t reach the last enslaved Black people until June 19 of that year, when Union soldiers brought the news of freedom to Galveston, Texas.
Most states and the District of Columbia now recognize Juneteenth, which is a blend of the words June and 19th, as a state holiday or day of recognition, like Flag Day. It is not, however, recognized by the federal government as a national holiday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Source: The Daily Chronicle