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when was weed found

Marijuana, also known as cannabis or pot, has a long history of human use. Most ancient cultures didn’t grow the plant to get high, but as herbal medicine, likely starting in Asia around 500 BC. The history of cannabis cultivation in America dates back to the early colonists, who grew hemp for textiles and rope. Political and racial factors in the 20th century led to the criminalization of marijuana in the United States, though its legal status is changing in many places.

As of June 2019, eleven states and Washington, D.C., have legalized marijuana for recreational use. Colorado and Washington became the first states to do so in 2012. Adults also can light up without a doctor’s prescription in Alaska, California, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Vermont and Oregon.

Medical Marijuana

In fact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved two drugs with THC that are prescribed in pill form, Marinol and Syndros, to treat nausea caused by cancer chemotherapy and loss of appetite in AIDs patients.

Because it’s a fast-growing plant that’s easy to cultivate and has many uses, hemp was widely grown throughout colonial America and at Spanish missions in the Southwest. In the early 1600s, the Virginia, Massachusetts and Connecticut colonies required farmers to grow hemp.

The cannabis or hemp plant originally evolved in Central Asia before people introduced the plant into Africa, Europe and eventually the Americas. Hemp fiber was used to make clothing, paper, sails and rope, and its seeds were used as food.

Marijuana has been used as medicine and a way of achieving euphoria since ancient times. The first reference to its use is in a Chinese medical manual dating back to around 2700 B.C. Chinese legend states that its usefulness in treating rheumatism, gout, malaria and, oddly enough, absent-mindedness was documented by Chinese Emperor Shen Nung — known as the Father of Chinese Medicine.

The Controlled Substances Act of 1970 classified marijuana along with heroin and LSD as a Schedule I drug, which means that it has high abuse potential and no accepted medical use. Colombia then became the main supplier.

Marijuana in America

By 1890, hemp had been replaced by cotton as a major cash crop in southern U.S. states, but hemp plants were not grown for their intoxicating properties. The level of intoxicant in this plant was very low. That began to change in 1910 when many people fled Mexico during that country’s revolution, arriving in America and bringing cannabis with them.

An Egyptian papyrus from about 1500 B.C. makes mention of cannabis as a useful way to treat inflammation.

Its use spread from China to Korea, India and then to Eastern Africa. In India, the plant was celebrated in one of the Sanskrit Vedic hymns as an herb that could “release us from anxiety.” Ancient doctors prescribed marijuana for pain relief but also advised against using it too much as it could cause the user to “see devils.”