On June 19, 1865, slaves in Texas first learned that they were, henceforth, forever free.
On Saturday afternoon, 150 years after that first Juneteenth celebration, the youth of Antioch Baptist Church, Susan, joined by the community’s adult leaders, celebrated the anniversary of that historic event, and reflected on its meaning today.
Led by the church’s pastor, the Rev. Dr. MarQuita Carmichael Burton, the program included a recitation from the church’s youth group, performances by praise dancers and the Voices of God musical group, and a discussion of the history of Juneteenth led by Walt Sampson.
Saturday’s program was originally planned to be held at the Port Fun playground near Mathews High School. However, concerns over inclement weather caused the event to be moved to the church.
Sampson spoke to the young members of church about what slavery was, its expansion as massive amounts of labor were needed to pick cotton in the wake of Eli Whitney’s inv...
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