Juneteenth—a combining of June and 19th, marks the end of the institution of slavery in the United States.
On this date in 1865, the last of the US enslaved people were freed in Galveston, Texas. This was two and a half years after President Lincoln issued the final Emancipation Proclamation which declared all enslaved people free. This is part of our American History rarely shared or even known.
The heart for this website is to go beyond just giving information about the annual CoMo Celebrates Juneteeth celebration each June. Our hope is this would be a place where people can come to find resources and learn all year round. Below you can find the videos from our 2020 celebration as well as resources from our planning team.
Marcie Walker, creator of BCWWF and Mockingbird History Lessons is a compassionate, smart, wise, courageous truth-teller, and leader who in these days can help us learn and understand our history and how we might pave a different way into the future.
There are two wonderful and wide array of book recommendations under the heading “Cream & Sugar” that you can access from the website.
This is Austin Channing Brown’s story — her lived reality growing up as a young girl and woman in a majority white culture. As I’ve engaged in my personal relationships with black and brown women, they have told me similar stories and experiences. I think it’s a must read for anyone desiring to listen and learn. — Kim Stewart
"The Sun Does Shine" is an autobiography by Anthony Ray Hinton that I found to be a gut-wrenching everyday truth of the times in which we live—times where no black man is ever considered innocent.
It is the story of one black man’s road to the electric chair and his way back because another man believed his truth so much that he was willing to give all to see truth reign in Anthony’s life. — Deborah A. Schaefer
Dominant societal beauty standards—blond hair and blue eyes—overshadow the unique beauty so many possess, particularly black people. Morrison tackles this topic in her short, but powerful fiction book, “The Bluest Eye.” We learn of Pecola Breedlove, who wants to emerge out of blackness and obtain blue eyes. Morrison uses the doll as a consumer culture symbol that perpetuates this standard. This book speaks to me for its ability to confront how white beauty standards have negatively affected the identities of African Americans. — Lisa D. Lenoir
“White Awake” was an impactful read for me as a white person. Author Daniel Hill, who is white, explores how white culture almost always wins when it comes in contact with other cultures. Hill tells the truth about systemic racism and white supremacy in a way that helped me see it clearly. He pointed out seven stages that I could expect to encounter in my own path of peeling back the layers of ignorance and beginning the work of unlearning what I thought racism was. It’s much deeper than individual hate toward a people group; it’s also a system that oppresses. — Lisa Buxman
The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson is the often untold story of black Americans migration from the south to northern and western cities in search of a better life. The migration lasted for decades. This book is my pick because it told personal stories which helped me to personally understand my family and community history better. My grandmother and aunts migrated from the South as did all the people in the neighborhood where we grew up. I always just considered it a coincidence but this book helped put it all in perspective for me. — Adonica Coleman
Pam Ingram recommends it as well, saying Wilkerson’s book meticulously tells the story of three of these migrants: a Pullman porter, a maid and a medical doctor. The New York Times describes “The Warmth of Other Suns” as “…rigorous enough to impress all but the crankiest of scholars, yet so immensely readable as to land the author a future place on Oprah’s couch.”