When kids learn about the history of slavery in the United States of America, it is, of course, taught with a great deal of gravitas. But this month, New York City families can experience the jubilation of emancipation at various Juneteenth celebrations that commemorate the abolition of slavery.
A combination of the words June and nineteenth, the holiday of African-American independence dates back to June 19, 1865, when Civil War General Gordon Granger arrived in Texas to claim the state for the Union and make sure the slaves were freed. (This was two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, believe it or not.) As of 2012, 41 states including New York recognize the occasion, and families can celebrate Juneteeth at various kid-friendly festivals and gatherings this month.