On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, with news that the Civil War was over and enslaved Texans were free, two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. On Saturday, June 18, 2016, the Eiteljorg Museum will commemorate the anniversary of what the newly-emancipated Black Texans called “Juneteenth,” with an exciting day of music, talks, dance, theatre, food, art and Western-themed activities. The museum, 500 W. Washington, Indianapolis and its galleries are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Juneteenth programming takes place from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Both museum admission and Juneteenth participation are free.
Juneteenth is celebrated in communities nationwide as the end of slavery in America. “We are proud to welcome and host the Indianapolis community as we observe this very important day,” John Vanausdall, Eiteljorg president and CEO, said. “Juneteenth exemplifies the complex and diverse story of our country’s history, a story we strive to reflect through the Eiteljorg’s offerings year round.”
This year’s Juneteenth celebration at the Eiteljorg will take place beneath The Sails along the Downtown Canal and is presented in collaboration with the Indiana His- torical Society, the Indiana State Museum, Freetown Village, Indiana African American Genealogy Group, Asante Children’s Theatre, the Black Cowboy Association and other local and regional partners. “Freedom” will be a key theme throughout the day’s activities, and a community comment wall will contain responses to the question, “What does ‘freedom’ mean to you?” Other activities include a reading of the Emancipation Proclamation, storytelling, and drumming. For a schedule of events, visit Eiteljorg.org.