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The Office of Public Records will resume its public research hours for walk-in researchers to the 1300 Naylor Court NW location on February 15, 2022. All inquiries can be submitted via our [email protected] portal or telephone at (202) 671-1105.

For Notary Services: Contact (202) 727-3117, Open for walk-in 9 am - 1 pm, Monday-Friday, except holidays, Location: 441 4th Street, NW.

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DC Emancipation Day

The District of Columbia Emancipation Commemoration Commission develops plans, programs, projects, and activities to celebrate the holiday and commemorate the District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act, signed by President Abraham Lincoln on April 16, 1862, that freed enslaved people in the District of Columbia. The Office of the Secretary is charged with the responsibility for organizing, planning, and coordinating the District of Columbia Emancipation Day activities.

Brief History

The District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Day became a public legal holiday for District of Columbia in 2005 by DC Act 15-082. Mayor’s Order March 7, 2008, established the District of Columbia Emancipation Commission. 

Key Events

Key events of the District of Columbia Emancipation Planning Committee include organizing and planning programs, projects, and activities to commemorate the sesquicentennial celebration of Civil War era history in the District of Columbia by highlighting the District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act. Visit the Emancipation website for an event schedule and other details about this year's celebration.