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Health & Safety

The History of Tobacco

Tobacco Leaf

Tobacco has had a long history in the United States, and has played an important role in the economic growth in the new country. Despite the health problems and effects associated with the tobacco industry, since arriving in the United States from Europe, tobacco has been used for trade, for medicinal purposes and even used as a form of relaxation.

Tobacco has been a plant that is native to North America. Its origin can be traced back to the time of Christopher Columbus landing in Cuba. Since those early days, tobacco was grown by Native Americans and was discovered by early colonists in the United States. 

The early settlers discovered the uses of tobacco as a source of medicine to relieve pain as well as being able to smoke it to and receive a therapeutic benefit. One of the earliest colonists to realize the opportunity to make a profit from the sale of tobacco was John Rolfe. In 1609, Rolfe arrived in Virginia and began to raise tobacco for commercial use in the Virginia colonies.

The growth of the tobacco industry and the need to cultivate the crop, led to the use of slaves being brought to the new land from Africa. The landowners owned the slaves and had them work in the fields of tobacco. The land in Virginia and the Carolinas were used extensively for growing and producing tobacco.

Over the year's tobacco continued to be an important economic product. From the early days when it was used as a form of currency and used as trade, to the more modern big businesses, tobacco has been an important

However, in recent years the tobacco industry has been under a tremendous amount of pressure from various groups. Marketing experts during the 20th century has portrayed tobacco and smoking as being cool and was generally accepted in society. The marketing of tobacco had portrayed cigarette usage as the thing to do, which encouraged young people to begin smoking.

In the later stages of the 20th century, health professionals began to study the effects of smoking on humans. It was determined that smoking can cause a number of health issues including cancer.. Because of the health problems associated with smoking, the tobacco industry was required to post warning labels on cigarette packages, along with restrictions on what can be said in advertisements.

While presently the tobacco industry has many restrictions and has come under fire due to the health concerns of smoking, the tobacco industry played a vital role in the early years of the country by providing an economic boost.

To help understand the history of tobacco and the role of tobacco in the economy of the country, we are providing a selection of resources and health related articles for your use:

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