Congress approves making Juneteenth a National Holiday

House members vote yes, after Senate approval on Tuesday
Celebrating Juneteenth
Celebrating Juneteenth(Associated Press)
Updated: Jun. 16, 2021 at 7:00 PM CDT
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WASHINGTON (AP) --The United States will soon have a new federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the nation. The House passed a bill Wednesday that would make Juneteenth, or June 19th, a federal holiday. The House voted 415-14 to make Juneteenth the 12th federal holiday. Topeka will commemorate the holiday in a nearly day-long celebration this Saturday.

Juneteenth commemorates when the last enslaved African Americans learned they were free. Confederate soldiers surrendered in April 1865, but word didn’t reach the last enslaved Black people until June 19, when Union soldiers brought the news of freedom to Galveston, Texas. The bill now goes to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature.

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