Juneteenth Holiday – Meaning, Importance, Flag, History and Facts

Juneteenth Holiday – Meaning, Importance, Flag, History and Facts: The United States of America had formalized this holiday by provisions in their federal policies in the year of 2021. This holiday had been signed into the country’s law in the year of 2021 to recognize it as one of the important holidays in the mainstream spotlight of the nation. This day marks an important event in the storied history of the country, and it is now celebrated all over the US on the date of 19th June 2023 every year.

The Juneteenth Holiday has now become a national holiday for all the states in the country but before it had been taken into the national law as the country’s latest federal holiday, it was mostly not a matter of too much attention in the general public. This was especially true for the population which comprised of mainly Non-Black Americans and to bring a change in this perspective, the day of 19th June 2023 was marked as the newest federal or national holiday for the people in the United States of America, as it was also labelled as the Juneteenth Holiday.

Juneteenth Holiday

It must be noted that the heavy push which was received in the recent years by various movements such as the Black Lives Matter Movement, had been the primary reason to recognize the date of 19th June every year as a national holiday. This was also backed by the long decades which have been spent by multiple leaders of the concerned community and the activists who are fighting till this day.

These leaders and activists have been able to create a momentum which is driven to bring about a change and relieve the Black Americans of the challenges that they still face due to the country’s racial history. The Juneteenth Holiday is the only holiday which has been approved to be recognized as a national holiday since the Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which was approved with the same national status back in the year of 1983.

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Juneteenth Holiday Overview 2023

Holiday NameJuneteenth Holiday
Holiday Date19th June 2023
Holiday ImportanceEnd of Slavery in the US
Recognition Year2021
Holiday StatusLatest National Holiday
Recognition by the First State  1980 by Texas

Juneteenth Holiday Meaning

After it was granted federal status in 2021, the Juneteenth Holiday has been one of the most important days and like every year, the holiday is going to be celebrated on 19th June 2023 for this year also. The Juneteenth Holiday (19th June) is also known to the general public as the Juneteenth Independence Day, Freedom Day & Emancipation Day all over the country. This makes the Juneteenth Holiday the newest federal holiday event which has been included in the list of major occasions in the country.

It gets its name from the perfect blending of two important words, which mark the history and importance of the Juneteenth Holiday. These two words are June and Nineteenth and it must be noted that these two words denote the date which was finally recognized as the national holiday of Juneteenth on 19th June every year starting from 2021. There are still many groups that represent the interests of the Black American Community and they point out the current state of the status such as the systemic inequities and wealth gap in racial terms, etc. as the Juneteenth Holiday gains national prominence.

Juneteenth Holiday Importance

For the year 2023, the Juneteenth Holiday is going to be celebrated on 19th June 2023. This day is remembered by the people of the US in memory of General Order Number 3, which was issued in the interest of freeing the people who were enslaved. This General Order Number 3 was issued by Army Major General Gordon Granger on 19th June 1865 for the people in Texas. This day still marks the described event as the moment which shaped the racial history of the country in the coming year.

Juneteenth Holiday (Meaning & Importance)

But other than that, in the modern age, this day is also a national holiday when employees from multiple organizations in the private and public sectors get to take a day off from their office hours. It also sees a lot of multinational brands and international corporations gaining the chance to use the day and capitalize the public attention with their long and remarkable celebratory campaigns.

Juneteenth Holiday History

The Juneteenth Holiday for this year on 19th June 2023 is not just a weekend long holiday opportunity to give workers an extra day off from their work. It poses the same questions which were asked when the Black American community had to take to the streets in the year of 2020. It is to be mentioned that without an understanding of the Juneteenth Holiday History from a historical view, the Juneteenth Holiday’s Importance is still only half-useful. In the year of 1865, on this day, the Army Major Gordon Granger had been given the duty to read and issue the popular General Order Number 3, for the enslaved population in the state of Texas.

The Union Army Gordon Granger rode into Galveston in Texas and issued the order to proclaim that the African Americans who were enslaved in the state were free. The order read that “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 to property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor.”

This freedom through the General Order Number 3 had been announced for the enslaved after 2.5 years after the American President Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation nationwide. For the time period, when the civil war was still an issue the Emancipation Proclamation had not been enforced in areas which were under direct confederate control. Hence, after the Confederate General Robert E. Lee had surrendered to the Union Army at the Virginia Appomattox Court House, this order was issued, as it was believed that this event was the end for the national civil war.

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Juneteenth Holiday Flag & Facts

The state of Texas had become the first state to grant the Juneteenth Holiday of 19th June every year the status of a state holiday. This started to be observed as a state holiday in Texas from the year of 1980. This status embarked the citizens to show the support by organizing parades, parties, get together and family gatherings every year. This had started very slowly from an informal celebration in the state to the date now, when there will be an additional 28 states and the Washington, DC, which will recognize the Juneteenth Holiday of 19th June 2023 as a national holiday.

On the Juneteenth Flag, there is a star which is used to represent the Lonestar State, i.e. Texas. This is surrounded by a bigger star which is used in a bigger size and marks the emerging new day in freedom. The colors of red, blue and white mark the awakening, freedom and liberty for all. These colors were used by the flag designer, an activist, Ben Haith, in 1997, as a reminder that the African Americans who had been enslaved in the county were always a part of the United States of America and that their history cannot be separated from the history of the US.

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FAQs on the Juneteenth National Holiday

When did the Juneteenth Holiday in the US come to be recognized as the latest Federal Holiday?

The Juneteenth Holiday had gained its new status of the latest National or Federal Holiday in the country in the year of 2021.

When is the Juneteenth Holiday celebration going to begin for the year of 2023 nationwide?

The Juneteenth Holiday is a national holiday and it has been celebrated every year on 19th June.

Which US state was the first to mark the Juneteenth Holiday on June 19th as a part of the state holidays?

The US state of Texas which had commemorated the Juneteenth Holiday on 19th June in 1980 as a state holiday was the first one to recognize it in the US history.