George Washington and Thomas Jefferson: Avid Hemp Connoisseurs
George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both actively grew hemp throughout many years of agricultural endeavors at their treasured Virginia abodes, Mount Vernon and Monticello, respectively. There is little evidence to suggest that either man grew the marijuana strain of cannabis; they likely grew the strain of cannabis commonly referred to today as “industrial hemp,” which has absolutely no use as a psychoactive drug. Washington and Jefferson had multi-acre fields of hemp; the plant’s fibrous qualities were invaluable for making rope, cloth, and other critical and commonplace items of the day.
Thomas Jefferson’s journal entries related to hemp can be found on the Monticello website; this particular passage was in his Monticello agricultural journal in 1815.
George Washington exclaimed the above praise for hemp in a letter to the Mount Vernon gardener in 1794.