• Published
  • By 2nd Lieutenant Esther Min
  • 47th Flying Training Wing public affairs

Juneteenth National Independence Day, as of June 17, 2021, was signed into law by President Joe Biden as a federal holiday that recognizes the ending of slavery in the United States.


On June 19, 1865, federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas after the surrender of Confederate general Robert E. Lee. During this historical moment, Union general Gordon Granger informed the people of their freedom and the end of the Civil War with the issue of the General Order No. 3. 


“The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free...”


Although the Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863, the news of it finally reached the ears of the people in the Confederate territory more than two years later when the Union troops arrived in Texas.


Juneteenth serves to observe not only the date that ended slavery, but as the holiday that was recognized first by the state of Texas.


In honor of the holiday on June 19, 2021, Public Affairs went around Laughlin AFB to ask local base members what Juneteenth meant to them.