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Juneteenth National Freedom Day

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Message from Mayor Rotering

Snapshot-19168Happy Juneteenth! We are proud to recognize this important day in our nation's history: Juneteenth National Freedom Day.

Juneteenth commemorates the day, June 19, 1865, when African American people in Galveston, Texas, finally learned slavery had ended. It is believed that these individuals were the last enslaved persons in the US to hear the words of the Emancipation Proclamation, which had been signed two years earlier.

With freedom as its central theme, Juneteenth is a universal holiday that the City of Highland Park is proud to celebrate. It tells a story of survival and persistence, and our newest federal holiday is also an opportunity to celebrate the significant economic, cultural, and scientific contributions of Black Americans to our nation. 

Join us as we recommit to doing all we can to continue to learn more about what African American communities experienced during slavery, the resulting legacy of racism, and the steps we each can take to end this injustice. 

Please explore the information below and make today’s celebration a meaningful one. Highland Park is a community with a proud history of speaking up and speaking out. At the City, we are committed to operationalizing the values in our Statement Against Hate across all departments. Learn more about the City's initiatives to advance equity in our community at 

The City welcomes your questions, comments, and ongoing engagement around these important topics. Please feel free to reach out to the City Manager’s Office via email at or by phone at 847.926.1000. 

Nancy R. Rotering
Mayor, City of Highland Park

Juneteenth: Celebrating Resilience Online Exhibition
The National Museum of African-American History and Culture has created an exciting, interactive online exhibit. Featuring stories, photographs, videos, and live presentations, Juneteenth: Celebrating Resilience explores the history and origins of Juneteenth, the legacy of slavery, and the ongoing impacts of racism on Black Americans and communities of color, and contemporary ways to celebrate.
The exhibit also includes hands-on activities for families to complete together. NMAAHC's parent guide offers detailed guidance on addressing this complex and challenging topic in an age-appropriate and historically accurate manner.
Anti-Racist Resources from Highland Park Public Library
Celebrate Juneteenth by delving deeper into the historical significance of this holiday and learning more about becoming anti-racist.
The Highland Park Public Library has compiled a list of books, movies, and online resources to help community members of all ages learn more about systemic racism. The Library provides recommendations for adultsteens, and children, with a mix of physical and digital materials.