Hemp has been a part of the human experience for thousands of years. These plants have been utilized by countless people for a multitude of reasons. Some cultures used it for textile purposes, others used it recreationally, and many of them used it medicinally. While scientists have difficulty articulating how hemp extracts interact with the body, one thing is certainly clear; hemp has quite a rich history.
Whether you’re an experienced CBD connoisseur or just getting started, it’s inspiring to understand the long history of hemp. In this article, we are going to summarize the long history of hemp and offer some key-points that we find particularly interesting. If you’re looking to become more familiar with the history of hemp, you’re in good hands!
What is Hemp?
Knowing the history of hemp is great, but it doesn’t really serve a purpose if you don’t know what hemp is! Let’s start by taking a quick look at this impressive plant.
Hemp is a powerful plant that belongs to the Cannabis family. In recent times, it is used both recreationally and medicinally, though it also has a long history of being utilized for textile purposes. Hemp contains a multitude of compounds referred to as “cannabinoids”. These compounds offer users a wealth of unique benefits. Some people find that hemp extracts help them sleep better, some people find that they help with aches and pains, and many people find that these extracts are a great way to stay on top of general wellness.
Earliest Uses of Hemp
Hemp has been utilized for thousands of years for a multitude of purposes. The earliest use of hemp was for textile purposes. Archaeologists have found traces of hemp in both modern day Taiwan and in China. The traces of hemp were primarily found in pottery and fabric, but it is widely believed that hemp was also used as food and for plant based medicines.
Fabric containing hemp has also been found in ancient Mesopotamia, but it wasn’t until 1200 B.C that hemp made its way to Europe. The value of hemp was quickly recognized and it wasn’t long before Europeans started utilizing it for both textile and medicinal purposes.
Queen Victoria and Cannabis
In modern times it’s no grand secret that hemp offers a wealth of benefits, but you might be surprised to know that in the middle of the 19th century, Queen Victoria was already using cannabis for medicinal purposes.
The Queen suffered from particularly painful menstrual cycles. Though there were plenty of natural remedies that had been developed specifically for this purpose, her personal physician recommended that she try cannabis. The results were nothing short of impressive and the Queen started using cannabis regularly.
Hemp is something that has been utilized for thousands of years. Not only has this plant been a part of the human experience for a substantial amount of time, it has transcended sociological boundaries. Hemp has been embraced by people from all walks of life. Whether you’re a pauper who’s trying to get by or you’re royalty who has access to every medicine imaginable, hemp does not discriminate and offers an affordable way to access an impressive array of benefits.
In the early years of the United States hemp was a highly valued plant. Not only was it used for medicinal purposes, but it proved to be extremely valuable in the textile industry. Hemp was incredibly common in the U.S. Just about every farm grew hemp and even president George Washington is believed to have grown quite a bit of hemp on his property.
In the 18th century, every farmer who had a large parcel of land was legally required to grow hemp. This shows just how important hemp was to the early American textile industry. Unfortunately, these golden days of hemp production didn’t last forever.
In the early 1900’s the American textile industry was blossoming and some of the major players weren’t fans of the competition that hemp presented. In the 1930s the Marihuana Tax Act was passed. This imposed taxes on farmers that made hemp production impossible from a financial standpoint. It is widely believed that palms were greased by competitive textile giants and the taxes imposed on hemp production were actually put in place to destroy the competition. It’s impossible to say for sure, but whatever the reason, this launched hemp into a period of prohibition that lasted nearly a century.
The Farm Bill
Hemp prohibition lasted for nearly 100 years and it wasn’t until 2018 that this prohibition was lifted. It was in 2018 that the Farm Bill was passed. This bill made it legal for farmers to grow industrial hemp as long as they followed some fairly strict guidelines put in place by the FDA.
Since hemp prohibition was lifted, the CBD industry has flourished. This has led to the development of a multitude of beneficial products. Now you can find everything from CBD gummies and tincture oils, to CBD spa treatments and topicals.
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