Juneteenth’s History of Food and Tradition

Juneteenth’s History of Food and Tradition

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Historically, Juneteenth marks the day enslaved Africans in Texas were finally freed from slavery. It may sometimes be painful, but history serves only to educate us about the racism and inequality that Black people still face today.

Red foods and beverages are staples of the commemorative day in June. In many West African cultures, red represents strength, spirituality, and life and death. RED is also a symbol of perseverance. In the latter half of the 1800s, following the Civil War, Black Americans occasionally used a South American dye called “cochineal” to color foods red.


Barbeque always brings a crowd together. Whether its ribs, chicken, pork, or brisket it’s always a crowd pleaser.




Tea cakes are not your typical cookies. While they visually look like sugar cookies; one bite and you are immediately surprised. The unique spices are enchanting. Back during slavery, the taste of one of these cakes was like a small slice of heaven.

In my hometown of Jonesville, Louisiana, they go all out for the Juneteenth Festival of Events. This has been a tradition for as long as I can remember. You will be sure to find all types of foods and events going on including a Juneteenth Parade. While we continue to move ahead; it is imperative that we remember our past. Happy Juneteenth. Omniley.


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Belle Omniley
Belle Omniley

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