For many Americans, when they mention Independence Day, they’re talking about July 4, which commemorates the Declaration of Independence. But for African Americans, a different date signifies independence: June 19, 1865.
The date has been referred to as Freedom Day, Black Independence Day, or most commonly, Juneteenth.
Wisconsin is one of at least 40 states that observe Juneteenth Day. Milwaukee was one of the first cities in the north to celebrate it; there's been an annual festival for over 40 years.