Special to the Herald
The public is invited to a Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 17, at the campus of the former Springfield Central High School, 434 Wallace Dr., Springfield.
The high school, which received a Georgia Historical Marker in 2021, was a grade 1-12 school for the county’s black students from the mid-1950s until the schools were integrated in 1970. The site is owned by the county and continues to be used as a recreational site.
The 2023 Juneteenth celebration will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will include food trucks, venders, children’s activities and presentations showcasing African-American life before, during, and after slavery, including the extended Effingham County community.
Juneteenth commemorates the day, June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers informed the formerly enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, that they were indeed free – more than 18 months after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. President Joe Biden declared Juneteenth a national holiday in 2021.
Event organizers are looking for local talent that showcase African and African-American experiences from the past, present, and future for the celebration. Anyone interested in participating in this event may call Cloyce Gardner at 912-484-4857 or Lucy Powell at 912-772-3515, or the Effingham County Branch NAACP's secretary, Gladys Smalls, at 912-441-7169.