The History Behind Juneteenth

Sometimes referred to as America’s second independence day, June 19 or Juneteenth, recognizes the day in 1865 when the last slaves were freed under the Emancipation Proclamation, which had been ratified two years earlier in January 1863. Although largely unknown outside the Black and African American community, it’s time for society at large to better understand this historic day.

Celebrate and learn more about this important day in American history using some of the resources below.

The National Museum of African American History and Culture has a short history of the Juneteenth. More resources are available on 

This NBC News article explores the significance of Juneteenth through the lens of the current anti-racist movement. 

And for visual learners, here is a short video from The Root and a longer video from the Minnesota Historical Society for a more in-depth look. 

These resources are only a starting point in better understanding the context and culture of Black and African American lives in our country. There is so much more to learn. Alliance will continue to provide resources that will help dismantle systems of oppression and move toward a more just and equitable society.