In the News

City of Springfield Celebrates Juneteenth Holiday

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, Congressman Richard Neal, City Councilors Tracye Whitfield and Justin Hurst and the Juneteenth Planning Committee joined with state and local officials on the front steps of City Hall to celebrate the Juneteenth Holiday in the City of Springfield with a flag raising.

State Senators Adam Gomez and Eric Lesser, State Representatives Bud Williams, Orlando Ramos, and Jacob Oliveira, Hampden County Register of Deeds Cheryl Coakley-Rivera, City Councilor Jesse Lederman, and Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris were also in attendance.  The Stone Soul Soldiers Peter Brace Brigade marched and presented the Colors and Natalie Parrish sang ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ as the flag was raised.     

The new Juneteenth state holiday, which is observed annually on June 19th, marks the anniversary date of June 19, 1865, when Union Army General Gordon Granger announced General Order No. 3 in Galveston, Texas, news of the Emancipation Proclamation to the residents of Texas and freed all remaining enslaved people in the state. 

Mayor Sarno stated, “I have always supported past Juneteenth events and this is an important and appropriate recognition in our city and nations history.”

Governor Charlie Baker approved the Juneteenth holiday across the state in 2020 but local municipalities had to make the decision on if they wanted to approve it as a paid holiday for city employees.  Both the City Council and Mayor Sarno approved and supported the measure to add Juneteenth as a paid legal holiday for the City of Springfield.    

On Thursday, June 17, 2021, President Joseph Biden signed into law a bill establishing Juneteenth as a federal holiday. 

Page last updated:  Tuesday, March 1, 2022 01:32 pm