HOUSTON -

Houstonians celebrated the 148th anniversary of the day Texas slaves learned of their freedom.

Juneteenth, the holiday that commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas, two years after the Emancipation Proclamation, was celebrated by many at Emancipation Park on Dowling Street on Wednesday.

Participants danced and listened to poetry with family and friends.

“We had to wait a little longer than any other nationality to get our freedom but everybody should appreciate it,” said Theresea Collins, a participant of the festivities.

Glen Christiansen, a Juneteenth celebrant, says he brought his 4-year-old to the park to take part in the festivities.

“It's the day the slaves were freed in Texas after the Civil War, two years after the Emancipation Proclamation, incredible...unbelievable,” Christiansen said.

While Juneteenth is celebrated across the country, the holiday's birthplace is Galveston.

It was in Galveston that Gen. Gordon Granger arrived by ship and announced that President Lincoln had freed the slaves two years earlier.

As a part of the celebration, the Emancipation Proclamation was read.

Doris Ellis, of Friends of Emancipation Park, said, “To celebrate Juneteenth at Emancipation Park is significant because four men got together a bought these ten acres of land.”