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WATCH: Days of Our Lives' James Reynolds and Jackée Harry Discuss Importance of Juneteenth (VIDEO)

Days of Our Lives' Jackée Harry (Paulina) and James Reynolds (Abe) sat down to talk about the significance of Juneteenth. On screen, their characters chose that day to wed, and the actors delved into the historical significance of June 19, 1865 to the Black community.

Harry shared that folks in her hometown of Winston-Salem, North Carolina "party hard" to celebrate the day, stating:

But it's known as the Day of Reparations when the slaves were emancipated by Abraham Lincoln and a lot of slaves didn't know they were emancipated. So when they found out, they celebrated [...]They came together, and a lot of the slaves migrated up north. 

Reynolds noted that the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation was issued during the middle of the Civil War, adding that the decree only liberated the enslaved people in the states that were rebelling against the Union. Juneteenth marks when enslaved persons in Texas learned of their emancipation, as word did not reach them until 1865.

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Reynolds also opened up about how enslavers separated some of his own ancestors, stating:

And the tragedy of marriage during slavery was that marriage was either had to be quietly and secretly or had to be done under the auspices of whoever the owner of the plantation or the ranch or the farm was. And more frequently than you know. it didn't bind those people together; it didn't bind those families together. Quite frequently, those families were torn apart. One of our great-great-great grandfathers  was told he was going to be sold and he was aware that the only way he could stay with his family, his wife and children, was if he was damaged in some way, physically damaged.

Reynolds continued:

And he actually went out the night before that trade was to go through and cut his finger off on a chopping block, thinking that, being maimed and not being physically whole, that he wouldn't be traded, that he would be able to live his life with his wife and children. But the next morning, instead of his being traded, his wife and children were traded. He had to watch them being driven away in a wagon, and as I understand it, his life was very short after that.

Watch the rest of this fascinating interview below.

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