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NRV celebration of Juneteenth planned June 19

BLACKSBURG — On June 19 at 6 p.m., Juneteenth will be celebrated on the lawn of Historic Smithfield Plantation, which is located adjacent to Virginia Tech’s campus.
In partnership with Asbury United Methodist Church in Christiansburg and St. Paul’s African Methodist Church in Blacksburg, Smithfield will be holding the event to honor Juneteenth, the oldest celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.
The holiday dates back to June 19, 1865, two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.
Though slavery officially ended on Jan. 1, 1863, it was not until 1865, following the surrender of Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Confederate army, that Union forces were strong enough to enforce the proclamation.
On the first Juneteenth, Union soldiers arrived in Texas, finally bringing the news that slavery had ended.
According to the official Juneteenth web site, “Juneteenth today celebrates African- American freedom while encouraging self-development and respect for all cultures.”
A range of activities has traditionally represented Juneteenth.
In earlier years there was strong emphasis on activities such as barbecuing, fishing, and baseball. Additionally, the celebration of Juneteenth has always had a strong focus on education and self-improvement.
The Juneteenth celebration at Smithfield Plantation will be hosted to honor the lives of the African slaves who lived and worked at Smithfield.
The festivities will include music, song, poetry, and dance that were an integral part of the lives of slaves, according to a news release from Lori Toliver-Jones, administrative director of Smithfield.
The rain date for the event is June 20 at 6 p.m.
The public is invited to bring a picnic dinner to eat on grounds, and drinks will be provided by Historic Smithfield.
The program is free and open to the public.
It is funded by a grant from the Community Foundation of the New River Valley, and is in part supported by Aztec Rentals, Blacksburg and Ukrop’s Grocery, Roanoke.
Built in 1774, Smithfield Plantation was once home to Col. William Preston, a member of the House of Burgesses and county lieutenant of Montgomery County during the Revolutionary War period.

NRV celebration of Juneteenth planned June 19

BLACKSBURG — On June 19 at 6 p.m., Juneteenth will be celebrated on the lawn of Historic Smithfield Plantation, which is located adjacent to Virginia Tech’s campus.
In partnership with Asbury United Methodist Church in Christiansburg and St. Paul’s African Methodist Church in Blacksburg, Smithfield will be holding the event to honor Juneteenth, the oldest celebration of the end of slavery in the United States.
The holiday dates back to June 19, 1865, two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.
Though slavery officially ended on Jan. 1, 1863, it was not until 1865, following the surrender of Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Confederate army, that Union forces were strong enough to enforce the proclamation.
On the first Juneteenth, Union soldiers arrived in Texas, finally bringing the news that slavery had ended.
According to the official Juneteenth web site, “Juneteenth today celebrates African- American freedom while encouraging self-development and respect for all cultures.”
A range of activities has traditionally represented Juneteenth.
In earlier years there was strong emphasis on activities such as barbecuing, fishing, and baseball. Additionally, the celebration of Juneteenth has always had a strong focus on education and self-improvement.
The Juneteenth celebration at Smithfield Plantation will be hosted to honor the lives of the African slaves who lived and worked at Smithfield.
The festivities will include music, song, poetry, and dance that were an integral part of the lives of slaves, according to a news release from Lori Toliver-Jones, administrative director of Smithfield.
The rain date for the event is June 20 at 6 p.m.
The public is invited to bring a picnic dinner to eat on grounds, and drinks will be provided by Historic Smithfield.
The program is free and open to the public.
It is funded by a grant from the Community Foundation of the New River Valley, and is in part supported by Aztec Rentals, Blacksburg and Ukrop’s Grocery, Roanoke.
Built in 1774, Smithfield Plantation was once home to Col. William Preston, a member of the House of Burgesses and county lieutenant of Montgomery County during the Revolutionary War period.