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Hundreds come to Durham to reflect on Juneteenth

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Downtown Durham was bustling all day with hundreds of tourists from all over the state stopping by to celebrate Juneteenth. Downtown Durham was bustling all day with hundreds of tourists from all over the state stopping by to celebrate Juneteenth.
DURHAM, N.C. -

Downtown Durham was bustling all day with hundreds of tourists from all over the state stopping by to celebrate Juneteenth.

Also known as Emancipation Day, Juneteenth commemorates the announcement of the abolition of slavery in the U.S. state of Texas in 1865. Juneteenth is actually celebrated on June 19.

Many who celebrated the day in Durham Saturday recognize the importance of remembering the past and the path the United States has taken.

"We're so busy living vicariously through what we see on TV, what the stars are doing, what the actors are doing," said Teolieh Story, who brought her family to celebrate Juneteenth. "I think … history and heritage, as an African American, has just fallen by the wayside"

"A lot of folks suffered," Morton White lamented. "I know my father did, his father and mother did. They did a whole lot for us, so the least we can do show respect to them."

For others, Juneteenth is also a reminder of racism in just the last few decades, and how far African Americans have come in their struggle for equality.

"Some people are still in their old ways because of how they were brought up," Alisha Thompson said.

Jarrod McAeil added, "Times have changed so much from back then. We came a long way."

There were plenty of activities for kids, food to eat and vendors displaying the long traditions of Africans abroad and here in the U.S.

Eileen Park

Eileen joined WNCN after years of working as a foreign correspondent. During her time off, she enjoys relaxing with her dogs, reading, and exploring the Triangle. More>>

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