Top ten hemp legends: Which myths are true -- and which went up in smoke?

Categories: Marijuana, News

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Did Henry Ford really make a car out of hemp? Was the Declaration of Independence written on hemp paper? Did Abraham Lincoln use hemp oil in his lamps?

The hemp plant, a variety of Cannabis sativa that's the subject of this week's cover story "Green Acres," is steeped in lore. Some hemp legends are true. Others are half-true, and some are completely false. Here, we present ten hemp myths culled from the Internet -- and attempt to separate the fact from the fiction.

10. George Washington grew hemp.

This oft-repeated legend is true; watch a video above of the folks at Mount Vernon, Washington's plantation-turned-museum, talking about the president's hemp farming.

If that's not enough proof, the column The Straight Dope took on a version of this question in 2009, providing a detailed answer and listing its sources.

"Both Washington and Jefferson tried growing hemp on their Virginia farms, with mixed success," The Straight Dope reports. Though he wasn't very successful, "Washington continued to tout the crop after he became president," columnist Cecil Adams adds.

9. Abraham Lincoln used hemp seed oil in his lamps.

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While hemp seed oil can be used in lamps, we couldn't find any credible evidence that Lincoln himself used it. We did find references to Lincoln using whale-oil lamps, as well as an article in a White House Historical Association publication explaining that the family quarters of the Lincoln White House boasted indoor plumbing and gas-fed lighting.

Some hemp websites even go so far as to claim that Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation by the light of a hemp seed-oil lamp. As proof, they offer this quote, which has absolutely nothing to do with lamps: "Two of my favorite things are sitting on my front porch smoking a pipe of sweet hemp, and playing my Hohner harmonica."

But Lincoln may have never said that. Several websites claim our sixteenth president wrote that strange sentence in a letter to the Hohner harmonica folks in 1855. But Hohner, a German company that also makes banjos and accordions, wasn't founded until 1857.

Continue for more hemp legends.

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My Voice Nation Help

algea can make us non dependent on imported oil.......

Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

"DEA evaluates these applications for registration in compliance with the statutory factors mandated by Congress and applicable regulations."

LOLz! Zero registrations.

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Seed grain for oil is $0.20 - $0.25 U.S. per pound

F.O.B. China.  Demand for the oil is in alternative market in U.S. 

The price for organic oil sourced from Germany is U.S. $11 - $14 / litre

F.O.B. U.S. for eastern seaboard.

Yields are in the range of 1.54 - 2.64 tonnes/hectare

of seeds (1400-2400lbs / ac). U.S. processors are

willing to pay $1,000 per tonne for clean harvested

seed. An extraction rate of 35% converts to 226-388

litres per acre. Organic hemp oil sells for $14 U.S.

per litre or approximately $3,395 to $5,821 per acre.

Oil pressing requires immediate cooling or nitrogen

based storage.

Given the value of seed and the projected costs to

produce it, it appears that the profit margin will be


DonkeyHotay topcommenter

"Hemp requires no irrigation or pesticides to grow."

Stoners ALWAYS Lie!

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

"George Washington grew hemp"

False! ... George Washington's Negro Slaves were forced to grow hemp for him.



@DonkeyHotay When you take into consideration the fibrous part of the plant can be converted into ethyl and/or methyl alcohol, and further used for feed stock, those minimal profit margins from seeds.hemp oil easily sustains the remaining operations which have much exceedingly large profit margins. Since hemp can be harvested 6-8 times/yr and the ethanol yield is 4-6 times more per acre than corn, it's common sense to use it rather than a food source for ethanol. Not only that, hemp can b grown in what is typically considered non-arable land, thus leaving arable land for food crops. 

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@ronster23117 ... yet the Canadians, Chinese and Eastern Europeans who've been growing 100s of thousands of acres of industrial hemp for decades haven't been able to realize the riches or environmental salvation your lying hempsters keep hyping.


When you figure out an efficient method to get ETOH from cellulose, you'll be a billionaire.

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@ronster23117 .. did you factor WORLDWIDE over DECADES, dumbass?

So besides your GIANT LIE about Ethanol from cellulose stalks -- the commercial technology for that doesn't exist yet, and when -- if -- the tech for that is developed, they can use the much more plentiful CORN stalks while still using the ears for food / feed -- and the BIG LIE about industrial hemp being produced on "non-arable land" -- you still haven't answered the question why China, Europe and Canada haven't "changed the world" and gotten RICH doing it over the DECADES they've been producing industrial hemp.

Your Hemp LIES have been exposed once again.


@DonkeyHotay @ronster23117 I don't know who p!ssed in your corn flakes but you're on a mission. So go into your little room and whack off to your little, pea-pickin' heart's desire. You will rant, rave, froth at the mouth, discount its 800 patented uses and medicinal uses until you throw yourself into seizures. Have fun...p.s. be sure and have your phone set on speed-dial for emergency services...

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