Resolution J3307-2013

Memorializing Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to proclaim February 2014 as Black History Month in the State of New York



  • Feb 4, 2014: ADOPTED
  • Jan 28, 2014: REFERRED TO FINANCE


LEGISLATIVE   RESOLUTION  memorializing  Governor  Andrew  M.  Cuomo  to
proclaim February 2014 as Black History Month in the State of New York

WHEREAS, Black History Month, previously known as  Negro  History  Week,
was founded by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, and was first celebrated on Febru-
ary  1,  1926;  since 1976, it has become a nationally recognized month-
long celebration, held  each  year  during  the  month  of  February  to
acknowledge and pay tribute to African-Americans neglected by both soci-
ety and the history books; and
  WHEREAS,  The month of February observes the rich and diverse heritage
of our great State and Nation; and
  WHEREAS, Black History Month seeks to emphasize Black History is Amer-
ican History; and
  WHEREAS, Black History Month is a time to reflect on the struggles and
victories of African-Americans throughout our country's history  and  to
recognize their numerous valuable contributions to the protection of our
democratic society in war and in peace; and
  WHEREAS,  Some  African-American  pioneers whose many accomplishments,
all which took place during the month of  February,  went  unnoticed  as
well as numerous symbolic events in February, that deserve to be memori-
alized  include:  John  Sweat Rock, a noted Boston lawyer who became the
first African-American admitted to argue before the U.S.  Supreme  Court
on  February  1,  1865, and the first African-American to be received on
the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives; Jonathan Jasper  Wright,
the  first  African-American  to hold a major judicial position, who was
elected to the South Carolina Supreme Court on February 1, 1870;  Presi-
dent  Abraham  Lincoln  submits  the proposed 13th Amendment to the U.S.
Constitution, abolishing slavery, to  the  states  for  ratification  on
February  1,  1865;  civil rights protester Jimmie Lee Jackson dies from
wounds inflicted during a protest on February 26, 1965, leading  to  the
historic  Selma,  Alabama  civil rights demonstrations, including Bloody
Sunday in which 600 demonstrators, including  Martin  Luther  King,  Jr.
were  attacked by police; Autherine J. Lucy became the first African-Am-
erican student to attend the University of Alabama on February 3,  1956,
she  was  expelled  three days later "for her own safety" in response to
threats from a mob; in 1992, Autherine Lucy Foster  graduated  from  the
University  with a Master's degree in Education, the same day her daugh-
ter, Grazia Foster, graduated with  a  Bachelor's  degree  in  Corporate
Finance; the Negro Baseball League was founded on February 3, 1920; Jack
Johnson,  the  first African-American World Heavyweight Boxing Champion,
won his first title on February 3, 1903; and Reginald F.  Lewis, born on
December 7, 1942, in Baltimore, Maryland, received his law  degree  from
Harvard  Law  School  in  1968,  and  was a partner in Murphy, Thorpes &
Lewis, the first Black law firm on Wall Street, and in 1989,  he  became
President  and CEO of TLC Beatrice International Food Company, the larg-
est Black-owned business in the United States; and
  WHEREAS, In recognition of the vast  contributions  of  African-Ameri-
cans,  a joyful month-long celebration is held across New York State and
across the United States with many commemorative  events  to  honor  and
display the cultural heritage of African-Americans; and
  WHEREAS, This Legislative Body commends the African-American community
for  preserving,  for  future  generations, its centuries-old traditions
that benefit us all and add to the color  and  beauty  of  the  tapestry
which is our American society; now, therefore, be it
  RESOLVED,  That  this  Legislative  Body pause in its deliberations to
memorialize Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to proclaim February 2014 as  Black
History Month in the State of New York; and be it further

  RESOLVED, That copies of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be tran-
smitted  to  The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of the State of New
York, and to the events commemorating Black History Month throughout New
York State.


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