African American Heritage Festivals
Celebrating Heritage. Celebrating Culture. Celebrating YOU.
Many cultures are embedded in Mobile’s rich history, but perhaps the African American community is most revered. Annual festivals and events honor, remember and celebrate the significant imprint of Black history on our 300-year-old city.
Juneteenth in Mobile
History of Juneteenth
Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) is celebrated as the day in 1865 when Union soldiers landed in Galveston, Texas to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people were freed. The troop's arrival came two and a half years after former President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth honors the end to slavery in the United States and is considered the longest-running African American holiday.
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BLOGS & MORE
Blog: Depth of Perspective in the Deep South
The importance of Juneteenth is the lens through which the past can be assessed, present redefined and future transformed regarding race relations and the possibilities for all Black people.
Blog: Juneteenth to Me
To me, Juneteenth is not only a celebration of independence, but it is also an opportunity to show deep gratitude for the millions of lives who found the strength to survive.
Suggested Itinerary: Our Storied Past
Discover the significant imprint of Black history on Mobile, from the story of segregation to the soulful taste of Black-owned restaurants. Plan your trip today!
Spirit of Our Ancestors
The Spirit of our Ancestors Festival is a day set aside to celebrate the 110 captives aboard Clotilda. Celebrated annually in February in honor of Black History Month, the festival consists of drumming, a libation ceremony, family stories, a keynote speaker, and the play An Ocean in my Bones by award-winning playwright Terrance Spivey.
2023 Festival: February 4-5, Africatown, USA
Keynote Speaker: Mary N. Elliott, Curator of American Slavery at the Smithsonian Museum