“The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.” – General Orders, No. 3
Last Thursday morning, in the meeting room of the Willie Mae Kirk Branch Library, NAACP award-winning children’s book author Alice Faye Duncan begins her presentation with a warmup.
“Shake, shake, shake,” she chants, “shake the wiggles off.”
Snapping along and shaking in place, a roomful of children and their caretakers echo Faye Duncan.
“Clap, clap, clap,” Faye Duncan orders the children, “clap the wiggles off.”
Faye Duncan is a children’s book author who writes about Black experiences, culture and history and she’s made a virtual appearance here in East Austin to kick off the library’s Juneteenth Jubilee, a four-and-a-half hour event featuring an author visit, a book raffle, activities and refreshments.
Faye Duncan begins to read Opal Lee and What It Means to Be Free: The True Story of the Grandmother of Juneteenth, a book she wrote documenting the life of the North Texas educator who helped turn Juneteenth into a federal holiday.