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President Biden signs legislation making Juneteenth the nation's newest federal holiday

Juneteenth becomes the latest federal holiday added since Martin Luther King Jr. Day was adopted in 1983.

Updated: June 17, 2021 - 5:50pm

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President Joe Biden on Thursday signed legislation into law that makes Juneteenth, which falls on June 19, America's newest federal holiday.

According to the Associated Press, Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 when Union troops delivered news of freedom to black slaves in Galveston, Texas, two months past when the Confederacy had surrendered.

It becomes the latest federal holiday added since Martin Luther King Jr. Day was adopted more than three decades ago in 1983. The AP noted that the Inauguration Day federal holiday only occurs every four years.

"Today @POTUS will sign the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act, establishing June 19th as a federal holiday. As the 19th falls on a Saturday, most federal employees will observe the holiday tomorrow, June 18th," the U.S. Office of Personnel Management tweeted.