This archive is intended to be an avenue for the community to empower themselves with information about this diverse and wonderful plant called HEMP.
If you are a journalist, be inspired to share in your publication about the cannabis plant. If you have a related story, please share it with us!
If you are a voter, take the time to educate yourself about the past, present, and potential future of this amazing plant. We will feature various videos that speak more about the hemp and cannabis movement and the politics behind prohibition and update frequently as new art and education becomes available. We intend this media to be just one part of the whole picture of what one plant could mean for society, agriculture, and our planet.
By Manuel Roig-Franzia, Washington Post Staff Writer
Hemp needed a hero. Needed one bad.
The gangly plant -- once a favorite of military ropemakers -- couldn't catch a break. Even as legalized medical marijuana has become more and more commonplace, the industrial hemp plant -- with its minuscule levels of the chemical that gives marijuana its kick -- has remained illegal to cultivate in the United States.
Enter the lost hemp diaries.
Found recently at a garage sale outside Buffalo but never publicly released, these journals chronicle the life of Lyster H. Dewey, a botanist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture whose long career straddled the 19th and 20th centuries. Dewey writes painstakingly about growing exotically named varieties of hemp -- Keijo, Chinamington and others -- on a tract of government land known as Arlington Farms. In effect, he was tending Uncle Sam's hemp farm.
What's gotten hemp advocates excited about the discovery is the location of that farm. A large chunk of acreage was handed over to the War Department in the 1940s for construction of the world's largest office building: the Pentagon. So now, hempsters can claim that an important piece of their legacy lies in the rich Northern Virginia soil alongside a hugely significant symbol of the government that has so enraged and befuddled them over the years.
All thanks to Lyster Dewey.
Things about hemp that were not taught to Jack in school, he tried to teach others. He was a steward of the plant and devoted his life to the support of cannabis as he believed it was the greatest gift the world has ever known.
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Staff
Hemp for Victory was a 1942 documentary produced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to encourage farmers to grow outlawed industrial hemp for the war effort as a way to stabilize America during World War II.
As the War on Drugs proceeded onward, the United States Department of Agriculture Library and the Library of Congress stated no such movie was made by the USDA or any branch of the U.S. government. His creditability threatened, Jack Herer made it his mission to uncover the truth about Hemp for Victory. He knew it was a USDA creation and not simply folklore.
Center stage is exactly where Jack Herer belonged. A talented, “bombastic” man, Jack’s energy was contagious and his legacy is alive and well.
By Bonnie King Salem-News.com/Special to Hemp News
(SALEM, Ore.) - Jack Herer was born June 18th, 1939, in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York. In 1940 his family moved to Buffalo, where he was raised, the son of a collection agency manager. A “normal American nerd”, he grew into a respectable young man, joining the military, getting married and starting a family.
And then, at age thirty, he completely changed direction, becoming one of the very first American Cannabis activists, and inevitably the most world renowned leader for hemp education.
Jack didn’t start out as the “kind of guy” who smoked pot. He was a Goldwater Republican, in the sign maintenance business. In 1969, recently divorced, he was introduced to cannabis by a girlfriend. He wasn’t much interested in it before then, and after briefly trying it a couple of times he was fairly sure it didn’t “work on him”. Jack was therefore naive to the euphoric or medicinal properties of the herb. When he decided to really give it a try, he said he had the most incredible sex of his life.
That inspired him to learn more. What he learned, he shared.
By Liina Flynn, Echo
Klara Marosszeky has a vision for the future that involves revamping of the local farming industry to produce industrial hemp crops. Working with farmers, she has just harvested her first commercial crop of industrial hemp and is looking for innovators who want to utilise the product.
(Tetrahydrocannabinol) content and produces the longest, strongest plant fibres in the world. It is used in many countries in the manufacture of plastics, fiberglass, fabrics, food and building materials.
“In the UK, a major car manufacturer, Lotus, is making whole cars out of hemp,” Klara said. “Everything but the engine is hemp. Henry Ford would be grinning in his grave.”
Klara currently teaches sustainability courses at TAFE and envisions hemp as the solution to many of the sustainability issues that are affecting Australia today. Not only is she trying to create a hemp industry in NSW and open the way to using hemp seed as a food product, but she is out to make housing materials affordable. After looking around for alternative products to replace our current dependence on timber, Klara spent years experimenting with hemp masonry as a building material, with very successful results. Two years ago, she was a finalist for the Northern Rivers Regional Development Board’s innovation award for her hemp masonry.
"Hemp will be the future of all mankind, or there won't be a future." Jack Herer
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Staff
Friends and family have confirmed that Jack Herer, known throughout the world as ‘The Hemperor,’ passed away on Thursday, April 15, 2010 in Eugene, Oregon. Herer was 70 years old, and a dear friend to CRRH and THCF, he will be greatly missed.
"No other single person has done more to educate people all across the world about industrial hemp and marijuana as Jack Herer. His book is translated into a dozen different languages, it's a bestseller in Germany. His legacy will continue to inspire and encourage for generations to come. I honor his memory." Paul Stanford, CRRH/THCF
"He was one of my personal heroes." Madeline Martinez, Oregon NORML
"The one and only Jack Herer will be missed forever." Bonnie King, Salem-News
By Jessica VanEgeren, The Capital Times
A recent Cap Times cover story on the state's extensive history with hemp - a hardy crop that no longer can be legally grown in the United States - sparked a trip down memory lane for a number of readers across the state.
"It was like walking through a canopied jungle," says Curt Hellmer of Stoughton. "Or rows of mature corn without the thick leaves near the ground."
That's how Hellmer, now 55, recalls his childhood experiences some 50 years ago when he used to play in the 8- to 10-foot-tall hemp stalks in his grandfather's hemp fields. The family made money on the crop by selling it to a rope manufacturer in Platteville, Hellmer says.
Back when Hellmer was running through hemp fields as a kid, Wisconsin was the country's second-leading producer of hemp. That all changed when the plant, which contains minimal levels of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), became classified as a controlled substance in 1970.
When growing hemp was still legal in the United States, farmers had to pay $1 for a "special tax stamp" that allowed them to grow or produce "marihuana."
A copy of a permit that was issued to Lafayette farmer, Horatio Bale, in 1943 was emailed to the paper after last week's cover story.
Bale's son and daughter-in-law, Kurt and Joanna Bale, still live on the family farm. It's not uncommon, they say, to find hemp still growing in patches.
Ancient plant has many uses, from medicinal to industrial
By Jesse Rowland
Ever since I first learned what it was, I've been fascinated by marijuana. It's a miraculous plant that can and has been used for a multitude of purposes since at least 8,000 B.C.E.
I feel that marijuana is a vital part of the continuation of our country and the planet, and it should be fully legalized for the use of whatever people see fit, including recreational.
Cannabis can be adapted with any industry, be it agricultural, medical, construction, textile or cosmetic. In Jamestown, Va., in 1619, a law "ordered" all farmers to grow marijuana for the colony. Similar laws were also passed in Massachusetts and Connecticut in 1631 and 1632. In Virginia, during times of shortage between 1763 and 1767, you could actually be jailed for not growing it.
Henry Ford, who designed a vehicle made out of hemp fibers and powered by hemp seed oil, once said, "Why use up the forests which were centuries in the making and the mines which required ages to lay down if we can get the equivalent of forest and mineral products in the annual growth of the hemp fields?"
And it makes sense. Why, as the most powerful country on the planet, would we not utilize the most versatile plant known to man?
By Ms. Sylence Dogood, Hemp News Staff
A distinct variety of the plant species Cannabis sativa L., the hemp plant is harvested for its fibers, seed, seed meal and seed oil. Marijuana is a group of flowering plants that includes three species of Cannabis, all indigenous to Central Asia and surrounding regions, but both Hemp and Cannabis can be readily grown in many regions throughout the world.
There have been over eight million Cannabis arrests in the United States since 1993, including 786,545 arrests in 2005, and Cannabis users have been arrested at the rate of 1 every 40 seconds. Statistics show that about 88% of all marijuana arrests are for simple possession, not manufacture or distribution, according to FBI Uniform Crimes Report. Large-scale marijuana growing operations are frequently targeted by police in raids to attack the supply side and discourage the spread and marketing of the drug, though the great majority of those who are in prison for cannabis are either there for simple possession or small scale dealing.
MURRAY, KY (wkms) - Not so many years ago in the United States, the hemp plant was widely grown for its fiber and seed. But hemp has fallen out of favor in the United States, partly due to its close relation to marijuana. Cultivating either is illegal, although that may change. Kentucky, once one of the leading hemp producers in the nations, is looking to revive the industry. Angela Hatton has the story.
Shirts, bags, jewelry, and twine are among the hemp merchandise that Murray retail store owner Valerie Hancock sells.
"I don't pick things because they're hemp, but I know that I have customers that come in who look specifically for hemp items or items that do contain hemp."
Hancock says the hemp for her products is cultivated and refined overseas, in countries like Turkey and Tibet. However, legislation headed for the 2010 Kentucky General Assembly would allow Hancock to buy her hemp from regional farmers. Senator Joey Pendleton of Hopkinsville is sponsoring a measure to legalize industrial hemp. Pendleton has backed the bill before, but he says this time is different.
"Now that the federal government is saying we're going to give it back to the states; if they want to legalize it and be able to grow it, that's up to them.' And that's why I got excited about it, and I think honestly that's the reason you're seeing this thing's catching on now."
First Battle of Lexington
The First Battle of Lexington also known as the Battle of the Hemp Bales, was an engagement of the American Civil War, occurring from September 13 to September 20, 1861, between the Union Army and the pro-Confederate Missouri State Guard, in Lexington, the county seat of Lafayette County, Missouri. The State Guard's victory in this battle bolstered the already-considerable Southern sentiment in the area, and briefly consolidated Confederate control of the Missouri Valley.
Early on the morning of September 20, Harris's men advanced behind his mobile breastworks. As the fighting progressed, State Guardsmen from other divisions joined Harris's men behind the hemp bales, increasing the amount of fire directed toward the Union garrison. Although the Union defenders poured red-hot cannon shot into the advancing bales, their soaking in the Missouri River the previous night had given them the desired immunity to the Federal shells. By early afternoon, the rolling fortification had advanced close enough for the Southerners to take the Union works in a final rush. Mulligan requested surrender terms after noon, and by 2:00 p.m. his men had vacated their trenches and stacked their arms.
By Sarah Harlan, WFIE
KENTUCKY (NBC) - Some Kentucky activists said they've found a way to make cleaner fuel without depleting food resources.
A Kentucky oil awareness group is holding a series of meetings to discuss bio-diesel instead of ethanol, which comes from corn and soybeans.
The group wants to use algae and hemp instead.
Right now, it's illegal to grow the crop in the United States.
"In Jessamine County, KY in front of the courthouse is a historical marker," Harry Lee with the oil awareness group said. "It talks about the hemp crop that Jessamine County used to grow. 1850 they grew 40,000 tons, they sold it for $5 million bucks."
In the mid 1800's, three Kentucky counties produced more than half of the hemp in the U.S. used for rope and twine, among other things.
Today, studies show it could be used to make bio diesel.
By Dev Meyers, Pittsburgh Neighborhood History Examiner
Medical Marijuana has proven scientific factual records dating back to 2337 B.C. when Chinese Emperor Shen Neng included marijuana in his Pharmacopoeia.
If you would like more information on this history, California Cannabis Research Medical Group has an interesting website.
The William B. O'Shaughnessy Archive establishes the credentials of a brilliant surgeon, physician, professor of chemistry and scientist who was also an expert in the fields of botanical pharmocology, chemistry, telegraphy, galvanic electricity, and underwater conduction.
He was also an excellent writer. Not the dry, hard to read, scientific papers of today, O'Shaughnessy's writing is enjoyable to read.
On the preparations of the Indian hemp, or gunjah gives the reader an historic perspective. The evidence is well-presented and compelling. The following is but one case example. Inquiring minds may want to dig right in and read the whole paper. It's fascinating.
I now proceed to notice a class of most important uses, in use in which the results obtained are of the character which warrants me in regarding the powers of the remedy as satisfactorily and incontrovertibly established. I allude to its use in the treatment of traumatic tetanus, or lock-jaw, next to hydrophobia, perhaps the most intractable and agonizing of the whole catalogue of human maladies.
Every man-made fiber we wear, sit on, cook with, drive in, are by-products of the petroleum industry -- all of which could be replaced by hemp.
By Dara Colwell, AlterNet
As the recession renews interest in the growing hemp marketplace as a potential boon for the green economy -- even Fox Business News has touted it -- hemp is becoming impossible to ignore.
But the plant's potential extends far beyond consumer-generated greenbacks. A low-input, low-impact crop, industrial hemp can play a significant role in our desperate shuffle to avoid catastrophic climate change.
"In terms of sustainability, there are numerous reasons to grow hemp," says Patrick Goggin, a board member on the California Council for Vote Hemp, the nation's leading industrial-hemp advocacy group.
Goggin launches into its environmental benefits: Hemp requires no pesticides; it has deep digging roots that detoxify the soil, making it an ideal rotation crop -- in fact, hemp is so good at bioremediation, or extracting heavy metals from contaminated soil, it's being grown near Chernobyl.
Hemp is also an excellent source of biomass, or renewable, carbon-neutral energy, and its cellulose level, roughly three times that of wood, can be used for paper to avoid cutting down trees, an important line of defense against global warming.