President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on Jan. 1, 1863. The document freed millions of enslaved African Americans. 

However, the news didn’t come to Galveston, Texas, for another two and a half years. On June 19, 1865 Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger led Union soldiers into Galveston to inform the townspeople and enforce the proclamation and executive order.

There are many stories about why the Executive Order took so long to reach Texas. Some believed that slave owners deliberately withheld spreading the information. Others believe that messengers were murdered en route to the Confederacy. Others believe information moved much slower than it does in today’s age of the internet. 

Indianapolis residents will join Americans throughout the country to commemorate the end of legalized, chattel slavery for African Americans in the United States.

Juneteenth Activities:

First Thursday 

Bring the whole family to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis to celebrate Juneteenth. Learn about why the day is celebrated through activities. Freetown Village Singers will perform.

When: 4-8 p.m. June 6

Where: The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 N. Meridian St.

Cost: $5 for Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience, or the five floors of fun $7 for both

Juneteenth Celebration

The Association of Black Social Workers, an organization dedicated to empowering and improving the lives of people of African descent, will commemorate Juneteenth with a special celebration.

When: 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. June 14

Where: 1100 W. 42nd St.

The inaugural Juneteenth Social

Attend this new social event to help connect Black professionals with each other in a relaxing and microaggression-free environment. 

When: 6:30-9:30 p.m. June 19, 

Where: Tube Factory Artspace, 1125 Cruft St.

Cost: Provide a business card for entry.

Indy Bookfest 2019 

Celebrate Juneteenth with a Civil War Reenactment, register for the Summer Reading program and participate in children’s activities, a writer’s workshop and more. Comic Patricia “Ms. Pat” Williams will be the keynote speaker and special guest speaker will be Dr. Anna-Lisa Cox, author of “The Bone and Sinew of the Land: America’s Forgotten Black Pioneers and the Struggle for Equality.” 

When: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. June 22

Where: Central Library, 40 E. St. Clair St.

Indy Juneteenth Festival

The second annual Indy Juneteenth Festival will feature food trucks, live music, a drum circle, games and more for the family. The Juneteenth Youth All Stars will compete in their first tournament. 

When: 4-8 p.m. June 22

Where: Riverside Park, 2420 E. Riverside Drive

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