1850: The United States Census counts 8327 hemp plantations
1850: The United States Census counts 8327 hemp plantations.
The United States Census of 1850 was the seventh census of the United States. Conducted by the Census Office on June 1, 1850, it determined the resident population of the United States to be 23,191,876. The total population included 3,204,313 slaves.
The 1850 Census collected a great amount of data that gave insight into the state of the U.S. economy in 1850. The data revealed the growth of the economy with regards to agricultural and manufactured production.
The census calculated the total land by state (in square miles), the total production of major goods and livestock per state (in respective units), the total value of each good produced, the total number of plantations per state, and various other statistics. In total it counted 8,327 hemp plantations (minimum 2,000 acre farms). Due to slavery, most of these farms were located in the South or in the border states. The enslaved workers on these plantations were forced to grow and process cannabis for the production of canvas and cordage which was in turn used heavily in the cotton industry. The total agricultural production between in 1850 was calculated at about 1.3 billion dollars.
Library Bibliography Bulletin 88, New York State Census Records, 1790-1925. New York State Library. October 1981. Photo: Spreading harvested hemp in Kentucky, USA 1895. Research and text © Hempshopper Amsterdam.