AME General Board Member & Lay Leader Carl Davis of the 10th Episcopal District is featured in a documentary about African Americans Juneteenth experience and celebration in Texas produced by the Houston Arts Alliance. In 1872, a group of African-American ministers and businessmen in Houston purchased 10 acres of land south of downtown, in the city’s predominantly black Third Ward neighborhood, and created Emancipation Park. Acquired for $800, the park was intended as a permanent site for the city’s annual Juneteenth celebration, which memorializes June 19, 1865, the day the Union Gen. Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston and belatedly put the Emancipation Proclamation into effect across Texas two and a half years after it became official.
On Saturday, June 17, 2017, the Emancipation Park officially reopened and the Juneteenth Documentary premier— just in time for Juneteenth Celebration — after a three-year renovation. This time the price tag was $34 million, and amid the celebration, there was a concern that would have been hard to imagine in the past:
The area is one of the oldest and most culturally significant black neighborhoods in Houston, with a rich legacy of art, music, political activism and education. In the 1950s, the Eldorado Ballroom hosted B. B. King, Count Basie, and Ray Charles. The historically black Texas Southern University was the center of the civil rights movement in Houston. More recently, Beyoncé Knowles, who grew up in Third Ward, has given the neighborhood a global profile by name-checking it in songs and featuring it in music videos. Click on the link below and enjoy the documentary.