Why Is the Juneteenth Flag Blue and Red? A Guide to Understanding the Juneteenth Flag

This year, Juneteenth will have been celebrated for 158 years. It was first celebrated in Texas on June 19, 1866, to commemorate the end of slavery and enslaved people first learning of the Emancipation Proclamation. The Juneteenth flag was created in order to signify and solidify the holiday for all Americans, and the Juneteenth flag is most noted for its distinct colors and shapes. Over two decades since its creation, people across the country are still utilizing the flag as a symbol of liberty and freedom for Black Americans

Here is a guide to understanding the Juneteenth flag. 

Related: Get Ready for Freedom Day! Here Are 30 Ways To Celebrate Juneteenth 2024

Who Made the Juneteenth Flag?

The flag was created by activist and organizer Ben Haith, also known as Boston Ben, who founded the National Juneteenth Celebration Foundation (NJCF). Ben Haith created the flag in 1997 in collaboration with Verlene Hines, Azim and Eliot Des. Later Lisa Jeanne Graf redefined the illustration and brought the current-day flag to life.   

Related: What Is Juneteenth? Everything to Know About the Integral Day in Black History 

What Does the Juneteenth Flag Represent?

The Juneteenth flag symbolizes freedom and justice for Black Americans and African Americans. The colors of the flag are similar to the United States flag because all Americans are able to understand and recognize the importance of African American history. One can not separate African American history from America’s history and the flag reminds us of just that. 

Related: How to Say Happy Juneteenth!

Why Is the Juneteenth Flag Blue and Red?

The colors of the flag were deliberately chosen by Haith and the collaborators to showcase that African Americans were always American even throughout enslavement. The Black community is one with America. The colors chosen further the notion that America must ensure that all citizens have access to 'liberty and justice for all'.

Related: Celebrate Freedom With These 101 Inspiring Juneteenth Instagram Captions

What Do the Star and Arc Represent in the Juneteenth Flag? 

The most noticeable feature of the flag is its star and arc. The star is another callback to the United States flag—representing that Black people are free in all 50th states. The Emancipation Proclamation was first read and acknowledged in Galveston, Texas. Texas, also known as the Lone Star State played a significant role in the addition of the star. Although Texas was the state that the documentation was read in, it represents freedom across the nation. Alongside the star, the outlined burst and arc represent the new horizon and new opportunities that are to come for Black people.

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