Juneteenth: History and FAQ

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, and Emancipation Day, occurs on June 19th every year and commemorates the emancipation of slaves in the United States.

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What is Juneteenth

Juneteenth is a special day in history. President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, but it did not reach the slaves in states that were part of the Confederacy until much later. The Emancipation Proclamation finally reached Texas on June 19, 1865. Because of this, we celebrate Juneteenth. Juneteenth is mostly celebrated in Texas and surrounding states.

Why did they name it Juneteenth

June 19, 1865 was the end of slavery in Texas. Putting the month and date together became Juneteenth.

When did Juneteenth start

Juneteenth was originally celebrated in Texas, on June 19, 1866.

How many states recognize Juneteenth as a state holiday

In April 2012 it was reported that 42 states now recongnizes Juneteenth as a

State Holiday!

Why was juneteenth celebrated

Juneteenth โ€“ also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, and Emancipation Day โ€“ is a holiday celebrating the emancipation of those who had been enslaved in the United States.

Why is the emancipation proclamation important today

The Emancipation Proclamation is often viewed as a Moral Repudiation of the institution of slavery. While in reality, it did not abolish slavery in the United States, it is nonetheless seen as adding abolition as a formal goal to the North's side in the US Civil War.

In effect, it is seen as a formal promise by the President of the United States to abolish slavery as soon as the Civil War was over. While the practical impact of the Proclamation itself inside the U.S. was very limited, it had an immense political impact on the course of the Civil War. In effect, the Emancipation Proclamation made European intervention on the side of the South a political impossibility. By proclaiming that the North was now fighting to abolish slavery, that now meant that the South was de facto fighting for slavery. As all major European powers had abolished slavery prior to the 1860s, their own public opinion was strongly against slavery. Thus, no European government would have been able to survive the outcry from their citizenry if they were seen to support slavery. And since the South now appeared to support slavery, no official support could every be forthcoming for the South.

This was decisive for the outcome of the Civil War. For, without access to European goods (and, in particular, assistance with breaking the Union blockage of Southern ports), the South would lose. It had neither the industrial capacity nor the finances to fight an extended war against the richer and highly industrial North. The EP also provided a huge boost to Northern morale, removing the only real other chance for a Southern victory (i.e. that the Northern public opinion would sag so much as to force a settlement before the North's industrial might could crush the South).

Today, the effects of the Emancipation Proclamation are seen in several ways: firstly, in the preservation of the Union as it now stands, and not a divided country. Secondly, it was the driving force between several major legal equality movements, primarily the 13, 14th, and 15th Amendments, and the 1960s Civil Rights Act (and movement as a whole). Furthermore, the Emancipation Proclamation is seen as adding a fundamental value to the American psyche: that all persons should be seen as equal, and that all Americans should aspire to treating each other with respect and dignity, regardless of race.

What was the most important effect of the emancipation proclamation

The most important effect of the emancipation proclamation was keeping the British and the French from aiding the Confederates, which was a major headache for Lincoln in Summer 1862.

What happended on June 19 1865

The emancipation of slaves was proclaimed in Texas.

What was left unsettled by the emancipation proclamation

The problem with the Emancipation Proclamation is that it did not outlaw the institution of slavery. As the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by President Lincoln under the War Powers Act, he could have outlawed the institution of slavery, but he chose not to.

A further problem with the Proclamation was that it only freed the slaves in states or territories that were not occupied by Union forces. For example, slaves in places like Maryland and Delaware, both slave states, were not freed by the Emancipation Proclamation. Maryland was never allowed to vote on secession, because President Lincoln sent Federal Troops into the Maryland statehouse and prevented the state legislature from voting.

President Lincoln was very skillful in wording the Emancipation Proclamation so that it only freed the slaves in ten states of the Confederacy, and not in all slave states. However, as these states were not under the control of the United States, but under the control of the Confederate States of America, the Emancipation Proclamation had no effect there.

Further, in some areas in the Confederate states where the Union Army had taken control were specifically listed as areas where the Emancipation Proclamation would have no effect, and slaves in those areas would not be freed by the Proclamation. For example, in southern Louisiana, where Union forces had captured New Orleans on 1 May 1862, and later spread their control over surrounding areas, those parishes in southern Louisiana were specifically listed in the Emancipation Proclamation as areas where the slaves would not be set free.

The idea behind this was that where slaves were working under Union control then they needed to remain slaves for the good of the Union and the Federal government. This clearly demonstrates that the Emancipation Proclamation was not a humanitarian act of President Lincoln, but rather was only a military tactic to attempt to weaken areas of the Confederacy where the Union forces were not in control.

So, if no slaves were freed in Federally controlled areas, and if the Proclamation had no effect in areas controlled by the Confederacy, then no slaves were freed by the Emancipation Proclamation. In order to outlaw slavery, and to free the slaves, it was necessary to pass the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It was that Amendment that actually ended slavery and freed the slaves.

What did the 13th amendment do that the emancipation proclamation had not

The Emancipation Proclamation was a speech given by Lincoln to inform the public that the Civil War and slavery would end soon. It gave those who opposed slavery hope and it gave the war a purpose again. The 13th amendment constitutionally eradicated all forms of slavery in the United States.

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