What we should know about Juneteenth
1. Many slaves did not know they were free
January 1, 1863, The Emancipation Proclamation came into effect abolishing slavery. Texas would not accept this Proclamation and kept their slaves. Some slave owners hid the news from the slaves of their freedom. After the Emancipation Proclamation, it was not until Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger arrived with 2000 troops traveling into Galveston, Texas, that many slaves learned of their freedom.
2. The freedmen were advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages.
"The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere." —General Orders, w3; Headquarters District of Texas, Galveston, June 19, 1865.
3. General Gordon Granger and solider’s forced them to free their slaves