Seal of the State of Nevada

EXECUTIVE ORDER 2020-09

ORDERING FLAGS TO HALF STAFF

WHEREAS, the history of the United States is stained by the legacy of slavery; and

WHEREAS, the first African slaves were brought to the United States over 400 years ago in 1619; and

WHEREAS, the forced labor of African slaves and their descendants born on this soil were used to build the economic wealth and infrastructure of the fledgling United States of America; and

WHEREAS, in 1860, President Abraham Lincoln was elected on a platform that included an opposition to the expansion of slavery to the western territories; and

WHEREAS, in 1861, seven slave-holding states calling themselves the "Confederate States of America" declared that they were seceding from the United States of America, and that slavery was "the immediate cause" of their secession; and

WHEREAS, the American Civil War began on April 12, 1861, when the Confederates attacked United States Army Fort Sumter in Charleston, South Carolina; and

WHEREAS, the Civil War ultimately resulted in the death of over 1 million casualties; and

WHEREAS, on September 22, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation declaring that millions of African-Americans enslaved in the Confederate states were now free; and

WHEREAS, the Emancipation Proclamation became effective on January 1, 1863; and

WHEREAS, the Nevada was admitted as the 36th state in the United States of America on October 31, 1864;and

WHEREAS, the Nevada was admitted as the 36th state in the United States of America on October 31, 1864;and

WHEREAS, on February 16, 1865, the State of Nevada ratified the Thirteenth Amendment; and

WHEREAS, the Confederate states continued to wage war against the United States of America until the surrender of General Robert E. Lee on April 9, 1865; and

WHEREAS, on June 18, 1865, United States Union Army General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas with troops to occupy Texas; and

WHEREAS, on June 19, 1865, General Gordon Granger read aloud General Order No. 3, which stated:

  The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.  

and

WHEREAS, since the announcement of General Order No. 3, on June 19, 1865, African-Americans have annually celebrated June 19th as "Juneteenth;" and

WHEREAS, on June 19, 2020, I issued a proclamation declaring June 19, 2020 Juneteenth Day in Nevada; and

WHEREAS, while we celebrate and commemorate the end of slavery in the United States, we must also honor the memory of the millions who died as slaves; and

WHEREAS, Article 5, Section 1 of the Nevada Constitution provides: "The supreme executive power of this State, shall be vested in a Chief Magistrate who shall be Governor of the State of Nevada."

NOW, THEREFORE by the authority vested in me as Governor by the Constitution and laws of the State of Nevada and the United States, it is hereby ordered that:

The flag of the State of Nevada shall be flown at half-staff at the State Capitol and all state public buildings and grounds, effective immediately, until sunset on Friday, June 19, 2020, as a mark of respect and in remembrance of the victims of slavery in the United States of America.

Footer State Seal

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of Nevada to be affixed at the State Capitol in Carson City, this 19th day of June, in the year two thousand twenty.

Governor's signature