Hemp History


Hemp may be the plant that started humans down the road toward civilization with the invention of agriculture itself. All archaeologists agree that cannabis was among the first crops purposely cultivated by human beings more than 6,000 years ago, and perhaps more than 12,000 years ago, and that hemp may well be the first “crop.”

Hemp, marijuana or cannabis grows more rapidly than any other plant in temperate and cooler climates, and grows well in the tropics too. Hemp or cannabis produce more energy, oil, protein, fiber and medicine than any other plant.

Hemp or cannabis where made illegal based upon a racist misinformation campaign to protect and enrich the petro-chemical industries. We call this misinformation campaign “reefer madness,” after the title of a 1937 film that purported to show how “a deadly new drug called marijuana” caused people to go insane and kill their family and friends.

While marijuana is prohibited, industrial hemp will be economically prohibitive due to the artificial regulatory burdens imposed by the prohibition of marijuana. When marijuana and cannabis are legally regulated, industrial hemp will return to its rightful place in our agricultural economy.

Restoring industrial hemp to its rightful place in agriculture today will return much control to our farmers, and away from the multinational corporations that dominate our political process and destroy our environment. These capital-intensive, non-sustainable, and environmentally destructive industries have usurped our economic resources and clear-cut huge tracts of the world’s forests, given us massive oil spills, wars, toxic waste, massive worldwide pollution, global warming and the destruction of entire ecosystems.

Prohibiting the cultivation of this ancient plant, the most productive source of fiber, oil and protein on our planet, is evil. In its place we have industries that give us processes and products that have led to unprecedented ecological crisis and worldwide destruction of the biological heritage that we should bequeath to our children, grandchildren and future generations. Restore hemp!

The Thomas Jefferson Papers, 1606-1827

 

U.S.D.A. Bulletin No. 404, Washington, D.C., October 14, 1916

 

Reefer Madness Misinformation Campaign (1930’s)

 

Naturalized Hemp in East-Central Illinois (1975)

 

The Emperor Wears No Clothes (1985)