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‘Black history is U.S. history’: Fargo-Moorhead community celebrates Juneteenth

Juneteenth was celebrated by hundreds of people in the Fargo-Moorhead community.
Juneteenth was celebrated by hundreds of people in the Fargo-Moorhead community.(Aaron Walling/KVLY)
Published: Jun. 19, 2022 at 7:28 PM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Celebrations of Juneteenth were held by the Fargo-Moorhead community over the weekend, commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans. While the is a cause of celebration, it is also a reminder of the work still needed to bring the country closer to equality.

“Black history is U.S. history for all students and all children. I’m seeing people, all walks of life, ages, culture, backgrounds and they’re learning about it,” said local artist Sewit Eskinder. “We are our ancestors’ wildest dreams out here.”

Joe McClain Jr., a spoken word poet, was brought to the City of Fargo to spread his message. Through his poetry, he provided his perspective of the ongoing battle for equality in the nation. He thanked his teacher Mrs. Joshua, a black educator from East Chicago Central High School, for encouraging him to use his talents to spread his words on the stage.

“It’s cool to have the holidays, it’s cool to have, you know, name changes from a racist building to Rosa Parks or whatever,” said McClain Jr. “We need to change the actual system because until then it’s nothing but a bunch of fluff, so we really need to get to the meat and potatoes. Get to the real problems in this country and we really need to make this country equal for everybody how it was originally meant to be.”

The sharing of Black history, culture, art, music and food has been important to preserving that legacy. Many people showed up to the events despite the temperature reaching over 100 degrees.

“Everyone coming out here today in the heat that really shows that they care and that they want to learn more about this and connects with the community as well.” said Communications Manager Gabby Clavo of the Historical and Cultural Society of Clay County.

There has been others before in history who set the stage for the fight for civil rights. Names like Martin Luther King Jr. inspired others to pick up their cause.

“They never stopped. Until the day that they died, and we will continue to push for equality and inclusion in our community. We won’t stop.” said Faith Dixon.

Juneteenth came to be after the announcement of General Order No. 3 by Union Army General Gordon Granger proclaimed the freedom of enslaved people in Texas on June 19, 1865.

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