January 17, 2022

National Freedom Day

national-freedom-dayNational Freedom Day is an observance on February 1 honoring the signing by Abraham Lincoln of a resolution that became the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

President Lincoln signed the Amendment outlawing slavery on February 1, 1865, although it was not ratified by the states until later.

Major Richard Wright, Sr., a former slave believed there should be a day when freedom for all Americans is celebrated.

Near the end of his life, he met with local and national leaders to organize a movement for a holiday to commemorate the signing and call attention to the continuing struggle for freedom for African-Americans.

The commemorative took place on February 1, 1942, at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Every year since, the remembrance has included a laying of a wreath at the Liberty Bell.

On June 30, 1948, President Harry Truman signed a bill proclaiming February 1 as National Freedom Day.  It is not a federal holiday; government buildings are open for business.

According to America’s library.gov, the definition of National Freedom Day states…  “the purpose of this holiday is to promote good feelings, harmony, and equal opportunity among all citizens and to remember that the United States is a nation dedicated to the ideal of freedom.”

National Freedom Day is Sunday, February 1, 2015.


Mary H. Lane

Commemorative Events Chair

James Stewart Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution


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