As of 2022, Juneteenth is a US federal holiday. First celebrated by Black communities in Texas, it marks June 19th, 1865, when Union troops arrived at the Port of Galveston to enforce Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. Today, while Americans celebrate that enslaved people were freed, many refuse to hear the cruel facts of slavery or allow them to be taught. The late Marian E. Barnes was a storyteller, author, historian, child advocate, and Black community leader in Austin, Texas. This week and next you hear her read her story based on historical records – a story nobody would publish because it depicts some of the cruel and violent practices and ways of speaking that slaveholders used to control and abuse their captives, throughout what Barnes terms as 300 years of holocaust.
Storyteller, historian, and child advocate Marian E. Barnes’s books include “Black Texans: They Overcame”, a series of African-American tales; and “Twelve Steps to Bringing Out the Best in Every Child.” She died in 2012, at age 89.
Credits: Story recorded by Marian E. Barnes 1996, and copyrighted by her. Used by permission of the author. The recording was done by Frieda Werden, in the studio at WATER (Women’s Access To Electronic Resources), a project of Genevieve Vaughan’s Foundation for a Compassionate Society.
Women’s International News Gathering Service (WINGS) has been covering the global women’s movement and related issues for community radio since 1986. Contact: [email protected]