Juneteenth E-Book Display

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Although Abraham Lincoln declared the end of slavery on January 1st, 1863, it wasn't applied immediately to all those in slavery. Sadly, over two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation, and a further two months after the end of the Civil War, Union troops arrived in Galveston, TX, on June 19, 1865, to find that news of the proclamation had not yet reached the area and people were still being held as slaves. General Gordon Granger, head of the Union troops, announced the emancipation from the balcony of the former Confederate Army headquarters. Juneteenth, also known by many other names including Freedom Day and Juneteenth Independence Day, commemorates this declaration of emancipation from slavery in Texas. Juneteenth was declared a federal holiday in 2021.

Special thanks to our Materials Processing Coordinator, Leah Zande, for compiling this list. Feature image by BP Miller on Unsplash.

Juneteenth Texas: Essays in African-American Folklore
Abernethy, Francis Edward (2017)

Juneteenth Texas"Juneteenth Texas" is the latest in a long and sometimes distinguished line of publications from the Texas Folklore Society. This one features twenty articles, plus three appendices which provide information about photographic archives, museums, and other resources for the celebration, preservation, and study of African American life in Texas. Editors Patrick Mullen and Alan Govenar devote most of the space in their "Preface" to a very nervous acknowledgment of the "volatile nature of writing about race in the 1990s," and describe the assembled articles as ranging "from personal memoirs to scholarly treatises."

This is a fair characterization. At the scholarly end of the spectrum are two very strong studies drawn from the extensive interviews with ex-slaves in Texas accomplished under the auspices of the Works Progress Administration between 1937 and 1939. One is devoted to foodways--T. Lindsay Baker's "More Than Just 'Possum'n Taters: Texas African-American Foodways in the WPA Slave Narratives"--while the other--John Minton's "West African Fiddles in Deep East Texas"--examines evidence for the presence in African American musical tradition of one-string and gourd resonator fiddles derived from such West African instruments as the goge. Richard Allen Bums also refers to the WPA slave narratives in his "African American Blacksmithing in East Texas," but this informative study is based primarily upon interviews Burns conducted in the 1980s. - Publisher's Description

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Encyclopedia of Emancipation and Abolition in the Transatlantic World
Rodriguez, Junius (2007)

Encyclopedia of Emancipation and Abolition in the Transatlantic WorldThe struggle to abolish slavery is one of the grandest quests - and central themes - of modern history. These movements for freedom have taken many forms, from individual escapes, violent rebellions, and official proclamations to mass organizations, decisive social actions, and major wars. Every emancipation movement - whether in Europe, Africa, or the Americas - has profoundly transformed the country and society in which it existed.

This unique A-Z encyclopedia examines every effort to end slavery in the United States and the transatlantic world. It focuses on massive, broad-based movements, as well as specific incidents, events, and developments, and pulls together in one place information previously available only in a wide variety of sources. While it centers on the United States, the set also includes authoritative accounts of emancipation and abolition in Europe, Africa, the Caribbean, and Latin America. "The Encyclopedia of Emancipation and Abolition" provides definitive coverage of one of the most significant experiences in human history. It features primary source documents, maps, illustrations, cross-references, a comprehensive chronology and bibliography, and specialized indexes in each volume, and covers a wide range of individuals and the major themes and ideas that motivated them to confront and abolish slavery. - Publisher's Description

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Austin's Rosewood Neighborhood
Rivera, Jane; Rivera, Gilberto (2012)

Austin's Rosewood NeighborhoodRosewood is a historically African American neighborhood on the east side of Austin. It takes its name from Rosewood Avenue, which runs through the heart of the area. Rosewood was first settled by Europeans in the late 19th century, and beginning in the 1910s, the City of Austin adopted as official policy the goal of segregating African Americans in East Austin. Rosewood has been the official home of Austin's Juneteenth, or Emancipation Day, celebration.

June 19th was the day that news of the Emancipation Proclamation reached Texas--two years after the fact. The exact location of the celebration has changed over the years, but whether it was Emancipation Park or Rosewood Park, Austin's major Juneteenth event has always been in Rosewood. - Publisher's Description

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Juneteenth! Celebrating Freedom in Texas
Barrett, Anna Pearl (1999)

Juneteenth! celebrating freedom in TexasThe author recalls her childhood in Galveston, Texas, describing the town's celebration of Juneteenth, in honor of the day Texas granted its African slaves freedom. - Publisher's Description

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Rethinking American Emancipation: Legacies of Slavery and the Quest for Black Freedom
Broomall, James; Link, William (2016)

Rethinking American EmancipationOn January 1, 1863, Abraham Lincoln announced the Emancipation Proclamation, an event that soon became a bold statement of presidential power, a dramatic shift in the rationale for fighting the Civil War, and a promise of future freedom for four million enslaved Americans. But the document marked only a beginning; freedom's future was anything but certain. Thereafter, the significance of both the Proclamation and of emancipation assumed new and diverse meanings, as African Americans explored freedom and the nation attempted to rebuild itself.

Despite the sweeping power of Lincoln's Proclamation, struggle, rather than freedom, defined emancipation's broader legacy. The nine essays in this volume unpack the long history and varied meanings of the emancipation of American slaves. Together, the contributions argue that 1863 did not mark an end point or a mission accomplished in black freedom; rather, it initiated the beginning of an ongoing, contested process. - Publisher's Description

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I Freed Myself: African American Self-Emancipation in the Civil War Era
Williams, David (2014)

I Freed MyselfFor a century and a half, Abraham Lincoln's signing of the Emancipation Proclamation has been the dominant narrative of African American freedom in the Civil War era. However, David Williams suggests that this portrayal marginalizes the role that African American slaves played in freeing themselves. At the Civil War's outset, Lincoln made clear his intent was to save the Union rather than free slaves - despite his personal distaste for slavery, he claimed no authority to interfere with the institution.

By the second year of the war, though, when the Union army was in desperate need of black support, former slaves who escaped to Union lines struck a bargain: they would fight for the Union if it committed itself to freedom. Williams importantly demonstrates that freedom was not simply the absence of slavery but rather a dynamic process enacted by self-emancipated African American refugees, which compelled Lincoln to modify his war aims and place black freedom at the center of his wartime policies. - Publisher's Description

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