​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Juneteenth Stories

Call for Oral Histories​, Stories, or Memorabilia​

Submit a nomination


 What is Juneteenth?

​Celebrating the end of sla​very in the United States​​

On January 1st, ​1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, officially declaring the end of slavery in the United States. However, it wasn't until the end of the Civil War—when the Union Army came to the last holdout of the Confederacy in Galveston, Texas on June 19th, 1865—​that slavery was effectively eradicated in the United States, and African Americans were finally set free. 

Since then, Juneteenth has come to be recognized as the official commemoration of African American emancipation, freedom, and achievement, celebrated with guest speakers, family gatherings, picnics, and more. Ranging from a single day to multiple weeks—sometimes even a whole month—Juneteenth is a time for reflection and rejoicing: to recognize where the African American community has come from, to affirm our collective commitment to freedom, and to plan for where we want to ​go in the future.

Call to the Public

Following the establishment of Juneteenth as a federal holiday in 2021 and reaffirming the city's ongoing commitment to honoring African American history in our own community, the City of Phoenix Commissions of Arts and Culture and Human Relations want to collect stories from residents about their experiences celebrating past Juneteenth celebrations in Phoenix. ​​

As a community project, your input is a valuable part of the process, and we need your help finding residents to share stories, memories, photos or memorabilia​ ​​for this project.  ​The Phoenix Juneteenth oral history project is open to any resident of Phoenix​. You can nominate friends, family members, elders, community leaders—​even yourself. 

To nominate yourself or someone else for this project, you can:

Please note: while all nomination forms will be considered, submitting a nomination does not guarantee that individuals will be contacted for an interview or items used. Similarly, being interviewed does not guarantee that footage will be used. ​Oral histories will be used to create a special video and project for this year's Juneteenth celebration. More details about the project will be released soon.

By having residents share their memories of Juneteenth celebrations around the city and what the holiday means to them, we'll continue to grow this national day of pride in Phoenix.​​

Submit a nomination

A historical photograph of two young African American women celebrating Juneteenth at a parade in Phoenix. Photograph by Russell Gates / the Phoenix Gazette.​

 Nomination Forms and Links​​

Submit a nominationSend us an email

You can also gives a call at 602-262-4637 or send us a letter ​to Juneteenth Project, c/o City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, 200 West Washington Street, 10th Floor, Phoenix, AZ 85003 by May 15, 2022.