Mark M. Hancock / © The Beaumont Enterprise
Ironesha Harrison, 10, (left) points out something to her mother Elizabeth Harrison of Beaumont (right) during the Juneteenth Blow Out at Riverfront Park in downtown Beaumont Saturday, June 18, 2005. Elizabeth Harrison said the event was their traditional first day out of the summer, and they like to match their clothes for the event.
Juneteenth is Emancipation Day in Texas. It is a state holiday. Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation freed the American slaves January 1, 1863. Unfortunately, Texas slaves were still hard at work in the fields more than two years later when Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston on June 19th to spread the news. This event is celebrated annually with pageants, parades, carnivals and sporting events.