PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The city of Philadelphia celebrated Juneteenth with a parade and festival Sunday.

“Wonderful. It’s wonderful,” said Deborah Brown, who was there to watch the parade.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker led the parade down South 52nd Street.

“One Philly, a united city!” Parker said along the parade route.

mayor-cherelle-parker-1.jpg
Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker holds up #1 as she chants “One Philly, a united city!” at the Philadelphia Juneteenth Parade and Festival.

It was a showcase of unity in Philadelphia to honor an important day in history.

“I love it,” said Azma Magee. 

1126ez-00-57-45-27-still001.jpg

It was a celebration to remember June 19th, 1865, the day enslaved African Americans learned of their freedom in Galveston, Texas. It happened more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation, marking the end of slavery in America.

“I’m very emotional,” said Frances Woodlin, who shed tears as she watched the parade route pass by. She said she was happy to see the city come together.

“It makes things better and I hope to see more like this,” she said. 

Magee said she uses the parade to teach her kids about what the holiday truly means.

“It means a lot for me as a parent, who raise young Black men in this city. If we didn’t have freedom, I don’t know where my sons would be, let alone my daughters,” she said. 

113550-00-59-41-24-still001.jpg

And Deborah Brown loved seeing people from all walks of life here to celebrate too.

“That is outstanding. We’ve come a long way,” she said. 

From a parade to a festival, the celebration of Black history and culture continued at Malcolm X Park.

Rudolph Wallace said he lived in the city for decades and has seen the ups and downs, but events like this give him faith that things will get better.

“Bringing people together is very good. It’s very exciting. It gives you hope,” he said.


Timbuctoo: 60 years before Juneteenth, free Black Americans thrived in this South Jersey town

04:02