Dear NYLS Community,
On June 19, our nation will celebrate Juneteenth, the holiday commemorating a historically significant event related to the end of chattel slavery in the United States.
On June 19, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas bringing news of the end of the Civil War and putting into effect the Emancipation Proclamation, which had been issued by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, but kept concealed from enslaved people living in Texas. Read more on the history from the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Many African American communities and families in Texas and other states have celebrated Juneteenth for over 150 years. NYLS, New York State, and New York City began to observe this holiday three years ago, and it became a federal holiday two years ago.
This year, NYLS will observe this holiday on Monday, June 19. I hope you use this day for learning more about this history, celebrating, resting, reflecting, giving back, and/or advocating for a more equitable and just society, depending on your circumstances and what feels right to you. Programs happening around New York City this weekend are listed below.
Thank you for your commitment to our institution, to racial equity and justice, and the promise of our democracy.
Celebrations and Educational Events
- The 14th Annual Juneteenth New York Festival, with online and in-person events
- The African Burial Ground National Monument’s Juneteenth Celebration at Duane Street, a few blocks away from NYLS
- Juneteenth Jubilee at the Brooklyn Museum
- Celebrate Juneteenth In Seneca Village in Central Park, a predominately African American community that existed before New York City created Central Park
- Annual Juneteenth Freedom Festival at Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden in Staten Island
- Celebrating Juneteenth events at Brooklyn Public Library locations
- Juneteenth at the New York Public Library with free events, books, and resources
- Juneteenth in Queens weeklong celebration at Roy Wilkins Park