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Gov. Mapp Declares Freedom Week In The Virgin Islands To Celebrate Emancipation Day and The 4th of July

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — Gov. Kenneth Mapp has proclaimed this Freedom Week in the U.S. Virgin Islands in accordance with Act. No. 8002.
Freedom Week encompasses two significant dates in the Territory’s history – July 2, 1848 when a call went out to enslaved Africans to come to Fort Frederik in the town of Frederiksted and July 3, 1848 when Governor General Peter Von Scholten, then Governor of the Danish West Indies, officially announced that, “All unfree in the Danish West Indies are from today, free”.
“Due to their heroic efforts, the enslaved Africans in Frederiksted, St. Croix succeeded in freeing all unfree persons in the Danish West Indies from the bonds of chattel,” the proclamation states. “I urge all people of the Virgin Islands to take a moment and think about that had it not been for the brave efforts of our ancestors that came before us, we would have never been able to enjoy and experience the freedoms that we have today.”
Emancipation Day, July 3, has long been recognized as a holiday in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Freedom Week has been proclaimed from June 26th through July 3.
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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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