A photo of a band at the 1900 Juneteenth celebration at Eastwoods Park. See Article.
CREDIT: GRACE MURRAY STEPHENSON, AUSTIN HISTORY CENTER, PICA 05481
Juneteenth 2020 brings even deeper meaning to the celebration of the end of slavery in the United States, given our greater awareness of the systemic racism that exists in our society today. In light of this, the South River City Citizens, has created an ad-hoc committee on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI).
DEI Committee Goals:
- Research some of Austin’s existing nonprofits that may have some intersection with DEI initiatives that our neighborhood can support. We may also learn, in the process, strategies that help organizations like ours to be more inclusive.
- Work with SRCC’s standing committees where DEI can be improved or initiatives implemented; namely, with the Safety Committee that works with our neighborhood police. The Preservation Committee may highlight diverse historical resources and cross-post to the SRCC website and Historic Travis Heights’ Facebook page.
- Review SRCC’s current bylaws and policies to improve opportunities for a more inclusive membership.
To achieve this goal, the Preservation Committee will seek and share histories about our Black, Indigenous and Latinx community in and around Travis Heights and Fairview Park.
To start, we would like to highlight today’s holiday of Juneteenth, when African Americans in Texas were finally decreed as free citizens, a long two years and two months after President Lincoln read the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. It is an important holiday, not only for African Americans, but for all Americans. This KUT story with excellent photos, describes how Juneteenth was celebrated through the years in Austin.
In addition, Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt is hosting a virtual Juneteenth celebration at this link.