The Long Road to Freedom: The U.S. Army and Juneteenth

In June 1865, Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas with roughly 2,000 Union Soldiers. Though his main goal was to bring an end to the Civil War and welcome Texas back into the Union, he had another objective. On June 19, Granger issued General Orders No. 3 declaring that “the people of Texas are informed in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States all slaves are free.” While the Emancipation Proclamation issued by President Abraham Lincoln legally freed slaves throughout the Confederate States, Texas resisted for two years. Granger’s order had the effect of liberating 250,000 people who had been in enslaved in Texas.


Juneteenth, alternatively known as Jubilee Day and Emancipation Day, became one of multiple local holidays commemorating the official end of slavery at different points throughout the South. For the Army, it also honors Black Soldiers who fought and scarified to ensure the Constitution fulfilled its promise to all Americans.


In this History Talk, discover the role of the U.S. Army in the liberation of enslaved persons throughout the Confederacy. Explore the courageous, selfless, and dedicated service by Black Soldiers that cemented the gains provided by the Civil War and opened the door to widespread military service for Black men in the U.S. Army.


Register for this VIRTUAL History Talk on June 5 at 12 p.m. ET

June 5 @ 12:00
12:00 pm — 12:45 pm (45′)