While June marks the beginning of summer for most Americans, the month holds great historic and cultural significance for African Americans. On June 19, 1865, more than two years after President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, enslaved African Americans in Texas finally received word they were free. In her children’s book, “The Juneteenth Story: Celebrating the End of Slavery in the United States,” Alliah L. Agostini shares the history of Juneteenth in an effort to spread awareness of this impactful date.
Reading this book with children will teach them why it took so long for those enslaved in Texas to hear they had been freed. It also sheds light on how Texans who moved to other parts of our country brought their Juneteenth traditions with them, creating momentum that culminated in Juneteenth being declared an official holiday in 2021. “The Juneteenth Story” is beautifully illustrated by Sawyer Cloud, who visually captures the uniting force of Juneteenth, making this book the perfect starting point for children beginning to learn about history.