In January 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was made effective by President Abraham Lincoln. Union soldiers began marching into cities and plantations in the South sharing copies of the Emancipation Proclamation and broadcasting the news of freedom in the Confederate States.
After over 2 ½ years since giving the general order, some enslavers withheld the information from enslaved people, holding them captive through multiple harvest seasons. On June nineteenth Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, TX, and announced that the more than 250,000 enslaved black people in the state, were now free by executive decree. He read General Order Number 3, and said the following:
The people of Texas are informed that, following a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property, between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The Freedmen are advised to remain at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts, and they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.
Finally, on June 17th, 2021, all 50 states recognized Juneteenth as a federal holiday. Exude Human Capital as a champion of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging, we recognize that much work remains to provide equitable treatment for marginalized communities in our country. In observance of Juneteenth, we will be pausing from our daily routines to reflect, celebrate freedom and justice, further educate ourselves, and connect with our communities.