Marijuana use and production has become so popular in recent years with constantly changing legislation on the drug. This raises the question of how it all started, or what the historical timeline looks like for marijuana.

The production and use of marijuana dates all the way back to 1600 where the domestic production of hemp was encouraged for the production of rope, sails, and clothing. Throughout the late nineteenth century, marijuana became a popular ingredient for many forms of medicine and was sold openly in public pharmacies.

An influx of Mexican immigrants after the Mexican Revolution of 1910 introduced the recreational use of marijuana to the American population. This initiated research that tied marijuana to violence and crime, and by 1931, 29 states outlawed marijuana.

In 1937, congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act which effectively criminalized the use of marijuana. In 1944, researchers take back their claims, now stating that marijuana in fact does not induce forms of violence or addiction.

1951 brought a stricter set of sentencing laws for drug related offenses, including those with marijuana. Even with these recent laws, the 1960’s saw a new trend in the use of marijuana- white upper middle class users.

The US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) was created in 1973 followed by Bush’s War on Drugs in 1989. In 1996, marijuana set out on a new path as medical use of the drug was legalized in California. Soon after, many states began to follow suit, legalizing marijuana for medical use and now, some even for recreational use.