Seven Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About Hemp

by bluevase

Hemp as received a lot of attention in recent years, as researchers are taking a hard look as its potential uses. Despite this trend, there are a lot of noteworthy hemp-related facts that few people are aware of.

Study Hard! Most people would not associate hemp with school, but until the 1880s, either hemp or flax paper were used to make all school books in the United States.

Paying the Tax Man: How about paying your tax bill with hemp? Believe it or not, in the US hemp plants were perfectly legal payments for taxes from 1631 up through the beginning of the nineteenth century. 

Grow Hemp… Or Else: Can you imagine getting into legal trouble for not growing hemp? As bizarre as that sounds, there was a time in colonial America when not growing hemp was against the law. Between the years 1763 through 1769 in the commonwealth of Virginia, a farmer who refused to grow hemp could be sentenced to prison. 

A Favorite of the Founders: What do George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and other founding fathers all have in common? All of them grew hemp as a crop on their land.

A Very Useful Plant: Up until the creation of the cotton gin, which revolutionized cotton production, hemp was essential for the manufacture of a wide range of products. Up through the early portion of the nineteenth century, it is estimated that hemp was used to make four-fifths of all textiles, fabrics, clothes, linen, drapes and bed sheets. 

Part of Our History: Hemp was not only used in the creation of the Betsy Ross flag, but was also the material used for the initial drafts of both the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.

Running On Hemp: The Model-T car is one of the most famous automobiles in history. What you probably didn’t know was that it was also designed to run on hemp gasoline. Perhaps more impressively, the car itself was built from hemp. Ford was almost certainly aware of the usefulness of hemp, as he grew this plant on his own property. 

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