DC Emancipation

Reporter: Damon Countee

UJW Winter/Spring 2017

April 16 marked 155 years since President Abraham Lincoln signed the Compensation Emancipation Act, which granted freedom to about three thousand one hundred enslaved people in Washington,DC. The act was signed months before the better known Emancipation Proclamation.  African Americans began public celebrations right after the civil war.  they continued through the early twentieth century, then stopped.  the DC government re-started observances in 2002.  This year, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser hosted festivities for DC Emancipation Day eight days earlier due to the Easter holiday falling on the same day.  UJW Sophomore, Damon Countee, who attends Frederick Douglass High School in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, reports on the significance of the holiday…

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