Incentive to quit the filthy weed, Arcata 1863

I went though some old newspaper archives recently and am obviously having fun with what I found.

Apparently “progressive” Arcata has a long history with filthy weeds…

Humboldt Times, 28 March 1863

Arcata Anti-Tobacconist–Our sister city, across the Bay, has taken another progressive step, in the organization of a league whoe one idea is to discourage the use of the filthy weed.

Some ten inveterate victims of this habit always fallacious and at present extremely extravagant have pledged themselves to abstain from the use of tobacco in any form during the year 1863, under penalty of a fine of ten dollars, which in case of forfeiture is to be applied to the school fund of the town.

We consider this a good arrangement; for if they really succeed…   it certainly will be to his advantage, while if his resolve melts away like the smoke of his discarded meerchaum*, the ten dollars remains as a tangible benefit to the school fund, which will gain what he loses.

*meerchaum: a claylike mineral used to make tobacco pipes

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6 Responses to Incentive to quit the filthy weed, Arcata 1863

  1. Dave says:

    I love it!

    I was really sucked in there at first. I expected the article to be about marijuana.

    I really like the wry way the writer communicated.

    • lynette77 says:

      Ha ! Apparently marijuana wasn’t the only filthy weed in town !

      Actually, just this afternoon I just saw two high school girls smoking cigarettes. Now THAT is a nasty habit.

  2. Bekki says:

    lol That is great…

    • lynette77 says:

      Glad you enjoyed. The editor of this paper wrote some horribly prejudiced things back then, but I can’t deny his writing skill or sense of humor.

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