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What is Juneteenth and how do Minnesotans honor this holiday celebrating Black freedom? This state and federal holiday commemorates the day in 1865 when news of the Emancipation Proclamation finally reached African Americans in Galveston, Texas, months after the Civil War ended. But there's more to the holiday's history and present-day celebration than is widely known.

Video guide, sources and biographies

Learn how Juneteenth has changed over time, view resources and learn about the individuals interviewed in the video.

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Share your story

The Minnesota Historical Society wants to hear from you! Help us commemorate Juneteenth by remembering and sharing your stories.

Share your story


As you celebrate Juneteenth, explore these additional MNHS resources to help you learn about and embrace the holiday’s rich history.

More Juneteenth videos

Research Black freedom

Use the Gale Family Library’s research tools to learn more about the history of Black Freedom celebrations. Start with MNopedia’s selection of entries about African American Rights and Public Life from 1800-1900, or the research guide on the African American Civil Rights Movement; you can also search Collections Online for items related to Juneteenth in Minnesota. Our newspaper archive features back issues of over 20 African American newspapers in the Twin Cities.