Tobacco and the history of the USA

The role tobacco played in the history of the US must not be underestimated despite America's fervent anti-tobacco campaign that entails an attempt to clear its past from any traces of tobacco whatsoever. On the one hand tobacco was and still is condsidered devilish, yet the initial stages of America's economy partly originate in tobacco planting. The columns of the Capitol represent tobacco plants and the first couple of America, Rolfe and Pocahontas, supported themselves by tobacco planting and trading. Already James I. inveighed against the devilish habit of smoking, yet happily accepted the money earned through taxes according to the motto BAD CUSTOMS - GOOD CUSTOMS. In fact the motherland profited from tobacco more than the planters themselves. A world market emerged out of the production, trade and use of tobacco and Theweleit speaks of the first global village of smokers - at the cost of Native Americans who were driven away from their land. Apparently the US largly fails to notice that tobacco was one of the main origins for international business, the development of American aristocracy in the South and to some extent part of the emerging struggles of class. The significance of tobacco in the history of the US is not desired information in the conglomeration of documents, invention, myth, fact and fake in American history and therefore little exposed in stories, songs and movies.


Introduction Chronological list of events A Map of Virginia
Pocahontas Captain John Smith
Histo/myth-tory The Tempest-The Shakespeare Connection Bibliography