Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) released the following statement commemorating Juneteenth:
“Juneteenth marks a pivotal point in American history: the emancipation of the last enslaved African Americans on U.S. soil. The painful role slavery played in our history cannot be forgotten, and we must ensure we learn from errors in the past so that they are never repeated again. On Juneteenth, we take the time to remember the day that barbaric practice ended in our nation, but also celebrate the sacredness of freedom and the richness of the African-American community’s innumerable contributions to all aspects of American culture, history, and identity.”
Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865. They were the last enslaved African Americans to be emancipated in the United States—more than a month after the conclusion of the Civil War on May 9, 1865.