"Presidents and Hemp: Exploring the Historical Use of Hemp by Former U.S. Presidents”
"Make the most you can of the Indian Hemp seed and sow it everywhere." - George Washington
It’s President’s Day, a time to reflect on the individuals who have led our country and the contributions they have made. One area that may surprise many people is the use of hemp by former presidents. While hemp is often associated with the modern CBD industry, it has a long history in the United States, including in the highest office in the land.
Hemp has been grown in the United States since colonial times, and it was widely used for a variety of purposes, including paper, clothing, and rope. This continued throughout the early years of the country, with many of the Founding Fathers, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, being advocates of hemp as a valuable crop.
While the use of hemp declined over the years, it continued to be grown in some parts of the country. And, as it turns out, some former presidents had a personal connection to the plant.
One of the most famous examples is President Abraham Lincoln. According to historical accounts, Lincoln used hemp oil to alleviate the pain he experienced from chronic constipation. While the oil likely didn't contain CBD, it is interesting to note that even in the 1800s, people recognized the potential health benefits of hemp.
Another former president with a connection to hemp is George H.W. Bush. In the 1940s, Bush was a pilot in the U.S. Navy and flew missions over the Pacific during World War II. During his service, he and his crew were issued flight suits made from hemp. The suits were durable and resistant to saltwater, making them ideal for use in the harsh conditions of the Pacific theater.
Finally, there is former President Barack Obama. While he did not use hemp himself, his mother, Ann Dunham, was an anthropologist who worked with a group of weavers in Indonesia who used hemp to create textiles. This experience influenced Obama's views on the potential of hemp as a sustainable crop and its ability to support local communities.
It is clear that hemp has played a role in the lives of many former presidents, and its use continues to evolve today. With the growing interest in CBD and other hemp-derived products, it is important to remember the long history of this versatile plant and the contributions it has made to our country.
As we celebrate Presidents Day, let us remember the individuals who have led our country and the diverse ways in which they have shaped our nation's history, including their connections to hemp.