Tobacco

The Surgeon General Makes His Case

How a tireless impresario parlayed a cloud of smoke into several fortunes

If you walk through the business districts of American cities these days, in even the worst of weather, you will see underdressed people huddled in doorways. No, they’re not homeless; they’re smokers. Read more >>

Forget your conventional picture of America in 1810. In the first half of the nineteenth century, we were not at all the placid, straitlaced, white-picket-fence nation we imagine ourselves to have been. By looing at the patterns of everyday life as recorded by contemporary foreign and native observers of the young republic and by asking the questions that historians don't think to ask of another time—what were people really like? how did they greet one another in the street? how did they occupy their leisure time? what did they eat?—Jakc Larking brings us a portrait of another Americna, an America that was so different from both our conception of its past life and its present-day reality as to seem a foreign country.

WE LOOKED DIFFERENT Read more >>
Within a century after Columbus and his crew first encountered Cuban natives “with a firebrand in the hand and herbs to drink the smoke thereof,” much of Western civilization had taken to tobacco in all its forms—an addiction brought back to the New World in Read more >>

Five successive Benjamin Harrisons created a private empire of tobacco and trade and a great Virginia plantation