Joyner Library joins in the celebration of Juneteenth: Freedom Day


Juneteeth Poster designed by Diana Helena Graham for Summer 2011 in ART5210 Graphic design (image from ECU Digital Collections) 

 On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation which declared that enslaved people were freed in certain parts of the country. However, hundreds of thousands of people remained enslaved in Texas as word of emancipation traveled slowly, and it wasn’t until June 19, 1865 that Major General Gordon Granger issued the order in Galveston, Texas that read:

“The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with 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.”
GENERAL ORDERS, No. 3.; Headquarters District of Galveston, Texas, June 19, 1865

People waving from a parade float during the celebration for the centennial of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation (image from ECU Digital Collections) 

To see more images related to Juneteenth and Emancipation visit Joyner Library’s Digital Collections:


June 19th, known as the holiday Juneteenth (“June” plus “nineteenth”), became the most-celebrated Emancipated Day holiday because it marks when the order finally reached the last of the enslaved people. Celebrations differ in various regions across the country, including cookouts, family gatherings, rodeos, parades, and concerts to celebrate achievements and to self-reflect and rejoice. This year, some celebrations may take place via video conferencing platforms and smaller gatherings in order to abide by the CDC’s guidelines for COVID-19.

For more information about Juneteenth: 


Graphic design by Brittany Katelyn Lehman for Summer 2011 in ART5210. Poster for awareness of June 19th (Juneteenth), the day slavery officially ended in Texas