Happy Juneteenth

Juneteenth came to Itta Bena on Saturday, with food, games, music and remarks at the city park in the downtown area. Helen Sims of Belzoni, director of The Reverend George Lee and Fannie Lou Hamer Civil Rights Museum, brought her character, The Old Storyteller, to the gazebo in the park to convey the history of Juneteenth. Sims’ character performs in the oral tradition, passing down history from generation to generation in dramatic recreations of events of significance. Sims told of the events of June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers, led by Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas, with news that the war had ended and that President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation had ended slavery some two years earlier.

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