Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule, 1934: "Marijuana Growing Wild..."

In doing research for our feature on the history of cannabis in Colorado, we came across some amazing old news stories from local papers about marijuana arrests and more. We'll share the most memorable of them in our quasi-regular feature, Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule. Today's item, from December 20, 1934: "Marijuana Growing Wild in Denver's Front Yards."

Here's a Rocky Mountain News gem from December of 1934, warning Denver residents of the menace growing right under their noses (gasp!). The story stems from the arrest of a Mexican national, Miguel Chavez, who was charged with importing marijuana and marijuana seeds into Colorado "and planting them." A regular Juan Appleseed, according to officials.

CTC wild marijuana.JPG
Rocky Mountain News.
Chavez was arrested after selling joints to high school kids near 17th and Larimer, but he denied that he had imported the ganja. While in court one day, Chavez allegedly boasted to the judge that he didn't need to import it, since it was already growing wild all around Denver. "I can get it any time I want from the banks of the Platte River and I've picked it from the front yards of houses along Federal Boulevard," the Rocky quotes Chavez as saying.

And while the Rocky might have bought this claim (calling Chavez's confession a "revelation"), Municipal Judge Alvin H. Pickens didn't. According to the article, two detectives -- both named Ed -- spent a few days following Chavez around and found plenty of "dens" where "marijuana smoke was heavy," but never came upon any huge herb stashes or anything growing along the river. In other words: There was nothing to substantiate the sensational headline other than the words of someone trying to get out of a harsher smuggling charge.

CTC front yard weed.JPG
Rocky Mountain News.
Not that people might not have planted a few clandestine crops in their yards -- and some industrious person certainly might have planted a few stalks along the Platte for easy water access. But marijuana was most certainly not growing wild along the Platte, and it's highly doubtful that wind-blown seeds were randomly sprouting in the front yards of bungalows on Federal.

A judge found Chavez and another man guilty of Denver's narcotics laws and sentenced both men to ninety days in county jail. Chavez was also hit with a $125 in fines for vagrancy and the pot. Chavez was then detained for federal agents after his stay in county.

More from our Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule: "Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule, 1937: "School Children Buy Drug"" and "Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule, 1937: "A growing social menace.""

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DonkeyHotay topcommenter

*** Stupid Stoner Tricks ***

-- 2 CU-Boulder Students Arrested for Feeding Pot Brownies to Classmates, Professor --

Two University of Colorado students are facing multiple felony charges after campus police say they provided marijuana-laced brownies to unsuspecting classmates and their professor on Friday, sending three to the hospital and sickening five others.

The two students – Thomas Ricardo Cunningham, 21, and Mary Elizabeth Essa, 19 – were arrested Saturday night on suspicion of second-degree assault, inducing the consumption of controlled substances by fraudulent means, conspiracy to commit second-degree assault and conspiracy to induce the consumption of controlled substances by fraudulent means.

All four charges are felonies.

Hey Puerile Pot Punks -- A64 does not cover this ... you pig-ignorant zit-faced shitstains.


plants that produce the main ingredient of absinthe grow around vail. did nature of man put them there? only the green fairy knows

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

 *** Pueblo Lawmen Killed in Plane Crash Searching for Pot Farm ***

A retired Pueblo police officer and a Pueblo sheriff's captain were killed in a plane crash while they were searching for illegal pot fields in the San Isabel National Forest.

The single-engine Piper Super Cruiser left Pueblo Memorial Airport Friday morning. The plane was supposed to return to the airport by 10 a.m., but it didn't make it.

The names of the victims have not been released by authorities but the Pueblo Chieftain identified them as Sheriff's Capt. Leide DeFusco and John Barger, a retired police captain.

Authorities said the retired Pueblo police officer was the pilot and the deputy was a passenger. They were going to an area where they had spotted a marijuana grow operation two weeks earlier.

malcolmkyle16 topcommenter

How can any responsible parent not desire a saner drug policy, and one that’s based on facts rather than reefer madness? Prohibition guarantees that many illegal drugs are far easier for our children to procure than even alcohol or nicotine. That's because, even though these are both very dangerous and addictive drugs, they are at least sold in properly controlled and regulated environments.

Under our present regime, certain plants/concoctions/drugs are sold only by criminals and terrorists; the huge black-market profits are used to threaten innocent civilians, bribe law enforcement officials, and buy support from unconscionable politicians; the availability and usage rates tend to go up, not down, and our prisons have become filled to capacity with easily replaced vendors and smugglers —this list of dangerous and negative consequences is actually endless. To continue prohibition is ludicrous, and those of us who can't see that by now, must be either severely mentally challenged or using something far stronger than any of us have even heard of.

Why on earth should we be willing to whack ourselves with ever-bigger and more-repressive prohibition hammers, while drug use and availability keep going up, not down, and while we all plunge deeper into Loserville?


As Donkey points out it would still be illegal under amendment 64.

nemopunk15 topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay So in your mind any Marijuana Legalization law should cover Dosing people? 

How fucked up are you?

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@malcolmkyle16  "Under our present regime, certain plants/concoctions/drugs are sold only by criminals and terrorists"

And if you legalize it, they -- the criminals and terrorists -- will continue to sell it without having to worry about the police.



@Kevins_Mom I can't even get donkey or mom to insult me anymore.  Being ignored is worse than being abused.

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@nemopunk15 "So in your mind any Marijuana Legalization law should cover Dosing people?"

You = Reading Comprehension FAIL!

... again.


@nemopunk15 @DonkeyHotay

Michael Roberts says dosing people is simply a joke. Ha ha.


@kevin_hunt @Kevins_Mom learn to tell the difference between a Donkey and an Ass

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