Mr Trump flew to Jamestown, Virginia to mark the anniversary – one of a series of events planned this year to mark the 400th anniversary of the founding of the colony by British settlers in 1619. Virginia will mark the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first slaves to the state next month.
But the event was overshadowed by Mr Trump’s controversial comments on race in recent days, with several members of the state assembly in Virginia skipping the event. In a statement, members of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus (VLBC) said it was boycotting the event because of Mr Trump’s “repeated attacks on black legislators and comments about black communities”.
“The absence of the VLBC will send the message that the members do not condone the president’s participation . . . those who have chosen to attend and remain silent are complicit in the atrocities that he incites,” the statement said.
Read the VLBC's full statement below: