NEW YORK - Juneteenth is now officially a public holiday in New York State.

Governor Cuomo signed the legislation Wednesday.

June 19th commemorates the end to slavery and celebrates Black and African American freedom and achievements.

On June 19th 1865, news of the Emancipation Proclamation reached Galveston, Texas, more than two years after it took effect.

Major General Gordon Granger announced the end of the Civil War and that all enslaved were now free.

This year's Juneteenth events took on extra significance in light of the death of George Floyd and the protests that followed in the city and across the nation.

June 19th of this year marked the 23rd straight day of protests in New York City.

In response to the Black Lives Matter protests earlier this summer, the city said it would be painting five Black Lives Matter murals on streets — one in each borough.

The parks department also announced it would rename parks across the five boroughs in an effort to honor African American history. The first park to be renamed was Cadman Plaza in Brooklyn, now known as Juneteenth Grove.

Several park names will be announced November 2.