Cannabis Time Capsule, 1897: Was the Aspen Times' manager hopped up on "hasheesh"?

Categories: Marijuana

B. Clark Wheeler.
Aspen might be a small town, but the battle for news readership has always been a fierce one -- though the insults have probably toned down (in print, at least) since 1897, when this screed from the editors of the Aspen Tribune ran bashing the editors and, more directly, the manager of the Aspen Daily Times.

But what's hash got to do with it?

July 18, 1897.
The answer, in part, has to do with competition. The Tribune argued that the Times had failed to expand and grow, despite claims to the contrary. The Tribune editors take the Times to task for daring to enlarge the size of their paper with ads, then shrinking it back down after decreasing the size of the plate into which type was set and cutting the "dead ad matter" to produce a meager seven-folio weekly (fourteen pages).

And to what does the Tribune attribute this downfall? The "diseased brain of its bombastic manager, after he had taken an extra large dose of 'hop' or hasheesh:"

The real reason for the Times' drop likely had more to do with the economy of the town, though. In the 1890s, the "diseased brain" of B. Clark Wheeler managed the paper. Later a state senator, Wheeler was a (pardon the pun) wheeler-dealer in town who was instrumental in building up Aspen through the silver boom and is credited with changing the name of the town from Ute City to Aspen.

When Wheeler bought the paper in 1885, the town was booming and Wheeler saw the need for a daily (because he could sell more ads, obviously). That worked for a few years, until the silver boom ran dry and the town fell on harder times. The paper went back to being a weekly and, as evidenced by this random bit of Colorado cannabis history, shrank in other ways as well. But just for the sake of adding some controversy to history, we'd like to also assume that Wheeler had a known taste for hash and that this jab wasn't just comical -- it was personal.

In the end, the Times had the last laugh. The Tribune folded in 1891, just four years after this editorial was published, while the Times went back to being a daily in the 1950s and still publishes to this day.

For more Colorado marijuana history, check out our Cannabis Time Capsule archive.

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DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Hey Bongsucker Billy,

When are you going to expose the obscenity of the MED and the Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Cartels FORCING sick Medical patients to purchase $$ overpriced, overtaxed, retail pot via their discriminatory restriction on the operating hours of medical dispensaries?

Medical dispensaries are forced to close by 7pm

Recreational dispensaries are open until MIDNIGHT!

So sick and suffering patients are restricted and denied their meds after 7, but recreational stoners can get their party on all night long.

And if a sick, suffering patient needs meds after 7, they have to pay the outrageously inflated prices, and abusively high taxes for recreational schwag.

Sure looks like MED and the Greedy Big $$ Dispensary Pigs are looking out for the Patients' best interests, don't it?

Remember Fucktards -- REGULATION WORKS!!

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Calif. DA seeks death penalty in murder of Boulder man during marijuana deal

Mark Cappello, of Central City, is 1 of 3 charged in death of Todd Klarkowski

Prosecutors will seek the death penalty against one of three men charged in a February 2013 triple murder that claimed the life of Boulder resident Todd Klarkowski and two others, the Sonoma County district attorney announced in California.

Investigators allege that Mark Cappello, 47, of Central City, was the triggerman in a marijuana deal gone awry. Cappello is charged with first-degree murder.

"Given the facts of the case, as well as input from the death review committee and the victims' family members, I have decided that this case warrants seeking the ultimate penalty," District Attorney Jill Ravitch stated in a news release. "It will be up to a jury of Sonoma County residents to determine whether the death penalty is appropriate in this case involving the alleged execution of three unarmed individuals for the purpose of financial gain."

Klarkowski, 43, was shot and killed execution-style along with Raleigh Butler, 24, of North Lake Tahoe, Calif., and Richard Lewin, 46, of Huntington, N.Y., in the Forestville, Calif., home of Butler's mother, who was out of state at the time.

Also arrested in the case were Cappello's alleged accomplices, Francis Dwyer, 66, of Truth and Consequences, N.M., and his son, Odin Dwyer, 39, of Black Hawk. The Dwyers, like Cappello, are charged with first-degree murder in the case.

Police say they think Lewin and Klarkowski had conspired to purchase 100 pounds of pot from Butler, and that Cappello, with the Dwyers, had been hired to transport the contraband to New York. Cappello, however, is alleged to have pulled a double-cross, murdering the three men with the intent of stealing the marijuana and cash.

This is the first time the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office has sought the death penalty since 1995.

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