NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Several events were held in Tennessee on Friday in support of Juneteenth.
Established just after the Civil War, Juneteenth is the oldest and most popular day of celebration commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans.
One of the first events of Juneteenth was a demonstration at the Davidson County Courthouse on Friday morning.
Dozens of men dressed in suits and stood silent for 8 minutes, 46 seconds, armed linked together, at 9:11 a.m.
The goal was to try to do more to control the narrative of how the black men are perceived by local and other communities. Their plan was to present men of color in a unified different light.
"Today, I thought it would be good idea to come out here and paint black men in a different light. I just wanted to see us not as a criminal or as what ever else the narrative may be for black men," demonstrator Phillip McGee said. "I just wanted to do more for my part with people who look like to control the narrative of people who look like me."
The events come after Gov. Bill Lee announced he signed a Juneteenth proclamation.
"We have an opportunity to mark a historic day in the life of this nation, one especially significant in this conversation. [Friday] marks the end of slavery in the U.S. on June 19, 1865, and I'll be signing a Juneteenth proclamation to recognize this day as it represents the promise of a free and just society for every Tennessean," the governor said at his weekly press conference on Thursday.
NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee announced during his press conference Thursday that he will sign a Juneteenth proclamation.
A demonstration organized by Black Lives Matter Nashville will be held in Legislative Plaza Friday from 5 to 8 p.m.
The rally will remember victims of racism and police brutality. Attendees are encouraged to wear masks.
U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) said he supports "the call for #Juneteenth to be recognized as a federal holiday."
1/3: Happy #Juneteenth! It's important that we use this moment in our nation's history to remember our responsibility to Black Americans.— Jim Cooper (@repjimcooper) June 19, 2020
Cooper also encouraged people to research the Civil Rights Collection. You can see the collection by clicking here.