Hammond Mayor Thomas M. McDermott, Jr. proclaims Friday, June 19, 2020 “Juneteenth Day”, also known as “Freedom Day”, in the City of Hammond.
Juneteenth is celebrated throughout communities as an observance of the ending of slavery in the United States. Although President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, this holiday dates back to June 19, 1865, two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation, when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Civil War had ended and slavery had ended.
In solidarity with our African American community and acknowledging the recent racial unrest in the United States and around the world, Hammond City Hall will be closed Friday, June 19thin observance of “Juneteenth” or Freedom Day. City Hall will reopen on Monday, June 22nd.
“Hammond prides itself as one of the most diverse cities in the Northwest Indiana,” stated Mayor McDermott. According to the 2010 census, the City of Hammond has a 25% African American population. “By declaring Juneteenth Day an important day in the City of Hammond, we help to highlight and bring to our collective consciousness many of the issues that are being addressed throughout the country regarding race and effective community policing. Standing in solidarity with our African American community I invite all citizens of Hammond to celebrate “Juneteenth” this Friday June 19th with reflections of the past, calm peaceful celebrations of the present, and prayers for the future”, stated Mayor McDermott.