Cannabis Time Capsule, 1923: "Drugs, Drugs, Who's Smuggling Drugs?"

Think the U.S. enforcing our drug laws abroad is a relatively new thing?

Think again.

According to this gem we dug up from the February 2, 1923 Akron Weekly Pioneer Press, we've been meddling in other countries' drug affairs for more than ninety years.

The article quotes "Colonel Forrer," a thirty-year veteran "government revenue expert" who was heading out on a drug-finding mission to some of the "principal ports of Europe suspected of being the main points of origin for the bulk of illicit narcotics."

Who was responsible for bringing drugs into the United States back in the roaring '20s? It was (you guessed it!) Mexico! Oh, along with Germany, Italy and Spain. We did a little bit of digging and found out that Colonel Forrer is Colonel O.G. Forrer (yes, O.G.), administrative assistant to the Narcotic Division of the Treasury Department -- the pre-DEA DEA.

Forrer's mission was also to include sniffing out just who was making money off of all of these drugs --because (like now) if it wasn't Uncle Sam, then it wasn't going to be tolerated.

More from our Colorado Cannabis Time Capsule blog: "1901: "Ganjah" upsetting banana and sugar plantations" ; "1892: Curing corns with cannabis"

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
William Breathes
Contact: William Breathes

Latest Stories