This year marks the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation taking effect and the 150th anniversary of Watchnight in the black community. Until the early part of the 20th century this was known as Freedom’s Eve. We are reclaiming that title as we celebrate Watchnight this year in commemoration of what Fredrick Douglas called "the first step on the part of the nation in its departure from the thralldom of the ages."
Below are links to some of the historical accounts of that night and the subsequent celebrations. We urge you to read these accounts and join us at 10:30 pm Monday December 31. The Declaration of Independence states: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness… December 31, 1862 was the night that this country turned to face the real truth of that declaration.