According to a post on Facebook put out by the Devils at about 5 PM today, the organization will be closing the offices of both the club and the Prudential Center tomorrow, Friday, June 19, in recognition of Juneteenth.
Juneteenth is an unofficial American holiday (except in Texas where it is an official state holiday), celebrating the official emancipation of the last slaves in the Confederacy following the American Civil War.
On June 19, 1865, Union Army General Gordon Granger read federal orders in Galveston, Texas proclaiming slaves in Texas to be free. Although the Emancipation Proclamation had actually freed all slaves almost three years before, due to Texas’ remote location at the time, enforcement of the Proclamation was difficult for Union forces.
Celebrations of the holiday go back to 1866 and are usually celebrated in most major cities nationwide today.
The Devils and Prudential Center are recognizing it as a permanent company holiday in order for players and staff “to reflect, learn and celebrate Juneteenth as we collectively work toward racial equality.”
There is currently a movement among citizens to get the holiday recognized as a federal holiday in the United States at large.