Members of the Clay County African American Legacy Inc. will host its 14th annual Juneteenth Celebration at the historic Garrison School located at 502 N. Water Street at 11:30 a.m. on June 20th. Tickets for the event are $10.00 at the door.
Mr. Sonny Gibson, Kansas City author and historian, the featured guest speaker will host a book signing of his most recent historical work, 1865- Kansas City Early Negro History following his presentation. The program headliner will be a concert performed by the Kansas City AKA Band showcasing guitarist C.J. Walker, at 1:30 p.m. Walker is featured in the Children’s Mercy T.V. commercial. There will be BBQ chicken wings, hamburgers, hot dogs, and Miss Edith’s homemade Baked Goodies for sale from noon - 2:00 p.m.
Proceeds from the program will benefit the Ken Robinson Scholarship Fund for minority youth who will be attending college in the fall, and the Garrison Capital Improvement Campaign. For residents who would like to become members of the Garrison Circle of Friends, annual memberships will be available for purchase at 20.00 each.
President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation that freed enslaved African Americans January 1, 1863, but many did not find out they were free until 1865 due to the war between the states still raging. Slaves in Texas did not find out they were free until June 19, 1865 and Missouri slaves did not receive their freedom until January 11, 1865. Juneteenth celebrations began in Texas where it is an official holiday, but it is only one of a number of freedom day celebrations held on various dates commemorating the end of slavery across the country.