Thomasville Mayor Jay Flowers presents a proclamation to Ucher Dent honoring her for her efforts in staging the annual Juneteenth celebration.

THOMASVILLE — The city’s Juneteenth celebration resulted in the city council honoring its driving force.

Thomasville Mayor Jay Flowers presented Ucher Dent with a proclamation honoring her for her work in putting together the Juneteenth event.

“You really spearheaded that,” Flowers said. “It was quite a celebration. We appreciate you and all the effort you put into it and we look forward for the city and all the citizens of Thomasville celebrating after all the effort you’ve put forth.” 

Flowers proclamation also encouraged “all citizens this year and in future years to reflect and embrace on our shared journey of freedom.”

President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, declaring all persons held in slavery shall be free. Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger’s reading of General Order No. 3 in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, brought the news of the end of the war and the end of slavery. 

Juneteenth, Mayor Flowers noted, is the oldest known celebration honoring the end of slavery. In 1996, the first legislation to recognize Juneteenth Independence Day was introduced. 

The City of Thomasville made it a recognized holiday for the city in May 2021.

Lucinda Brown, president of the Thomas County NAACP, thanked Dent for all her work in putting the Juneteenth celebration together and the city for its support.

“We really do appreciate everything the City of Thomasville did during out Juneteenth celebration,” she said, “and we truly appreciate this young lady right here. It was not easy. It was hot. But we were there. The people enjoyed it. Everything was positive about the Juneteenth event.”

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