“General Order No. 3” (June 19, 1865)

Slave Auction

In this proclamation, issued June 19, 1865 by Union general Gordon Granger, he informs the people of Galveston, Texas, that those who had been enslaved were now free. The order was read by Union troops at several locations throughout the city and published in newspapers throughout the state. The day the proclamation was issued is now celebrated as Juneteenth, marking the end of legal slavery.  Enslaved people in Virginia learned they were free before this because news of the Confederate defeat traveled slowly and unevenly.


Head Quarters District of Texas

Galveston Texas June 10th 1865.

General Orders

No. 3.

The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor.

The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.

APA Citation:
Granger, Gordon. “General Order No. 3” (June 19, 1865). (2021, April 28). In Encyclopedia Virginia.
MLA Citation:
Granger, Gordon. "“General Order No. 3” (June 19, 1865)" Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, (28 Apr. 2021). Web. 23 Apr. 2024
Last updated: 2021, June 15
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