Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration honoring the emancipation of slavery in the United States. President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was issued January 1, 1863. Communications of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Civil War’s end was slow to reach everyone across the United States. On June 19, 1865 the news of the emancipation of slavery finally reached the remaining enslaved Africans in Galveston, Texas. Juneteenth celebrates the official emancipation of slavery and marks the belated liberation of Black people in America.
For many, Juneteenth is also seen as a representation of the ways in which the liberation of Black people in America has been delayed by ongoing systemic oppression. The holiday may prompt communities to consider promises of freedom not yet fully realized for Black people in the United States.
As a consumer-owned cooperative with equity and inclusion as core values we recognize that there is more work to be done within our co-op, communities and country. In the midst of the fight for true liberation of Black bodies, Seward Co-op stands with community in calling for justice and calling for peace.