For black bear in NY I'd go with a 44 mag. I prefer at least a 4" barrel to reduce muzzle blast as much as possible. Either S&W or Ruger are fine for this application. A black bear isn't a griz or a coastal brownie.
Though you can always stick to shooting 45 Colt in it, a 454 is Loud. A 454 in a short barrel is Real Loud. Muzzle blast should be considered. You may not be able to put on/in ear protection in an emergency situation.
If you don't handload, 44 Mag is definitely the way to go.