High History / Part XXXII / Fitz Hugh Ludlow & The Hasheesh Eater

8 months ago


He studied medicine at Princeton University and tried every known pharmaceutical he could, including Hasheesh. In his article The Apocalypse of Hasheesh, he concludes:

"Hasheesh is no thing to be played with as a bauble. At its revealing, too-dread paths of spiritual life are flung open, too tremendous views disclosed of what the soul is capable of doing, and being, and suffering, for that soul to contemplate, till, relieved of the body, it can behold them alone."

He describs his altered states of consciousness and philosophical flights of fancy while he was using a Cannabis Extract, in his an autobiographical book "The Hasheesh Eater", that was created popular interest in Hasheesh, leading to Hasheesh Candy and private Hasheesh Clubs, and was later popular in the Counter-Culture Movement of the 1960s.

"It is this process of symbolization which, in certain hasheesh states, gives every tree and house, every pebble and leaf, every footprint, feature, and gesture, a significance beyond mere matter or form, which possesses an inconceivable force of tortures or of happiness.” He wrote


So Who Was He ?

  • He is Fitz Hugh Ludlow (September 11, 1836 – September 12, 1870), the author of many works of short fiction, essays, science reporting and art criticism.

  • He was an American author, journalist, and explorer; best known for his autobiographical book The Hasheesh Eater (1857).

  • He also wrote about his travels across America on the overland stage to San Francisco, Yosemite and the forests of California and Oregon in his second book, The Heart of the Continent.


  • He devoted many of the last years of his life to attempts to improve the treatment of opiate addicts, becoming a pioneer in both progressive approaches dealing with addiction and the public portrayal of its sufferers. Though of modest means, he was imprudently generous in aiding those unable to cope with drug-induced life struggles.

  • Ludlow died prematurely at the age of 34 from the accumulated effect of his lifelong addictions, the ravages of pneumonia and tuberculosis, and overwork.


Ludlow & Marijuana

  • Fitz-Hugh Ludlow was a recent graduate of Union College in New York, when he recorded his hasheesh-induced visions, experiences, adventures, and insights.

  • During the mid-nineteenth century, the drug was a legal remedy for infection and Ludlow had a friend at school from whom he received a prepared provide.

  • He consumed such giant quantities at every sitting that his hallucinations are likened to those tough by controlled substance addicts.

  • Ludlow describes the #Marijuana User as one who is reaching for :

"The soul’s capacity for a broader being, deeper insight, grander views of Beauty, Truth and Good than she now gains through the chinks of her cell."

Conversely, he says of Hashish Users:

"Ho there! pass by; I have tried this way; it leads at last into poisonous wildernesses."


The Hasheesh Eater (1857)

  • First revealed in 1857, The Hasheesh Eater was the primary full-length yank example of drug literature. Yet despite the scandal that surrounded it, the book quickly became a huge success.

  • Since then, it has become a Cult Classic, first among Beat writers in the 1950s and 1960s, and later with San Francisco Bay area hippies in the 1970s.

  • In this first scholarly edition, editor Stephen Rachman positions Ludlow's enduring work as not just a chronicle of drug use but also as a window into the budding American bohemian literary scene.

  • A lucid introduction explores the breadth of Ludlow's classical learning similarly as his involvement with the nineteenth-century social group that enclosed fellow revelers like poet and also the piano player Louis Gottshalk.

  • With helpful annotations guiding readers through the text's richly allusive qualities and abundance of references, this edition is ideal for classroom use as well as for general readers.

Here you can read all of The Hasheesh Eater Quotes
“I am about to reveal to you," "something which I would not for my life allow to come to other ears. Do you pledge me your eternal silence?" "I do; what is the matter?" "I have been taking hasheesh—Cannabis Indica, and I fear that I am going to die.”

Reference & Photos / Wikipedia / The Hasheesh Eater / Good Reads /

Before Prohibition, when #Cannabis plants grew freely, many of Notable People throughout #History, created necessary contributions to the event of common Cannabis Usage, throughout the ages, from ancient civilizations, to queens, to presidents, to emperors. So, if missed out one celebrity of High History Series,

feel free to check :

Ramesses The Great / William Shakespeare / James Monroe / Queen Victoria / Marijuana Inside The Tomb / Hua Tuo / William Brooke O'Shaughnessy / Herodotus, Democritus & Dioscorides / Ottoman Empire / Cannabis Club / Henry VIII & Elizabeth I / St.Hildegard Von Bingen / Louisa May Alcott / Queen Hatshepsut / Scythians & Herodotus / Maya Angelou / Isak Dinesen / Margaret Mead / Carolus Linnaeus / Jean Baptiste Lamarck / Joan of Arc / Friedrich Nietzsche / Andre Breton / Christopher Columbus / Carl Edward Sagan / Oscar Wilde / John F. Kennedy / Pablo Picasso / Benjamin Franklin / Aleister Crowley / Mark Twain /

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  • Hashish is not something you can play with as a trinket. I like to choose quotes for myself..

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Another informative post.. Thanks :)