Welcome back my fellow learners, this article goes to all my fellow smokers out there.
The Americas and tobacco go way back, drawings show that the Mayans of Mexico were dabbling in tobacco as far back as 600 – 900 A.D. The American Indians were growing their own tobacco long before the Europeans were even heard of. Back then the Indians used to use tobacco in their religious ceremonies, and even for medicinal purposes, with the help of a pipe.
In 1612 the population of Jamestown, Virginia began to grow tobacco as a way to earn money. This was their main source of income, along with cotton, corn, sugar, wheat, and soya beans. Believe it or not tobacco actually funded the American Revolution against England. And, the first President of the United States grew tobacco also. Which I have to say is a joke, since most of the Americans are all anti smokers now, I wonder if they know that their great nation was built on tobacco?
Most people by the 1800's used to use tobacco, however, most of them chewed it, (we have all watched the great westerns and seen the tough cowboys doing this). However, the more refined rolled their own cigarettes or had the occasional cigar. Back then the average smoker only smoked around 40 cigarettes a year.
The first known and commercial cigarettes by manufactured by Washington Duke on his farm in North Carolina, he sold most of his hand rolled crop to the soldiers towards the end of the Civil War.
In 1881, a savvy man called James Bonsack first invented the cigarette rolling machine, this machine could make up to 120,000 cigarettes per day. And so the tobacco industry went global. James and Washings Dukes son decided to combine their skills and built a factory which spewed out over 10 million cigarettes in their first year alone.
Their first brand were in a box that contained baseball care, this brand was known as the Duke of Durham. Duke and his father created the first company in the United States and named it the American Tobacco Company. This became the biggest and most powerful company up to the 1900's. By then more smaller firms has cropped up. Philip Morris in 1902 brought out the now still famous Marlboro cigarettes which would eventually spell disaster for the American Tobacco Company.
So there you have it folks, how the evil weed first began.