Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Credit: Howard Schnapp

ALBANY — The state will commemorate the tragic and triumphant events of 400 years of African and African American history since the arrival of the first slaves to the colony of New York.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed a bill Friday that will create a commission to plan and carry out events and programs throughout the state next year.

"Chronicling and giving voice, resonance and significance to the immense, pioneering and worthy contributions of African-Americans over the past four centuries is not only necessary from the standpoint of understanding the past, but even more critical for inspiring the future,” said state Sen. Leroy Comrie (D-Queens), a sponsor of the legislation.

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