Juneteenth: a Celebration of Freedom

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, is an important holiday that commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States. This day holds significant historical and cultural importance, marking the end of slavery and the pursuit of freedom for all.

This holiday traces its roots back to June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, to deliver the news of the Emancipation Proclamation. This executive order, signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1862, had officially declared the freedom of enslaved people in Confederate territory. 

Juneteenth holds immense significance as a celebration of freedom, equality, and resilience. It serves as a reminder of the struggles endured by African Americans throughout history and highlights the ongoing fight for civil rights and social justice. By celebrating this holiday, we recognize the resilience of those who fought for liberation, and we reaffirm our commitment to building a more inclusive and equitable society for future generations. 

In honor of Juneteenth, the Santa Clara County Library District is hosting The Tabia African American Theatre Ensemble for a performance at the Gilroy Library on Saturday, June 10th from 2:00-3:00pm. We are also hosting a virtual author talk on June 28th from 5:00-6:00pm with Tananarive Due, an award-winning writer, educator, producer, and a leading voice in black speculative fiction. In addition, we have a booklist with titles for children, teens, and adults. This list features books on Juneteenth and the Black diaspora experience in America.