Even if you don’t know anything about cannabis, you’ve likely seen the number 420. Or, at the very least, you’re familiar with the most important stoner holiday—April 20th (4/20).
Now the question is, what exactly is 420, and how did it become associated with cannabis? The history of 420 is believed to have started in California and began between a few good friends.
However, there’s a lot more to the story than that. If you’d like to know about the history of 420 and why it’s so important to cannabis culture, then continue reading below.
How Did 420 Become Associated With Cannabis?
Legend has it that 420 began as a ritual by a group of five high schoolers in San Rafael, California, in the 1970s. This group of friends was known as “the Waldos” because they would hang out by a wall outside their school.
The thing is, the Waldos came up with 420 in the fall of 1971 because of a cannabis treasure-hunt. The Waldos learned about a Coast Guard member who planted a cannabis plant in nearby Point Reyes.
The problem was that this mystery cannabis grower couldn’t tend to his crop anymore. Supposedly, the Waldos got directions (or a map) from this Coast Guard member that led them to the plant.
The friends agreed that they would meet once a week at 4:20 PM at the Louis Pasteur statue on the school grounds. They would then get blazed, drive over to the coast, and begin their search.
Some say that 4:20 PM was the time to meet because they were all athletes. So the time was convenient because they would all be out of practice at that time.
Unfortunately, the Waldos never did find this abandoned weed plant. However, this treasure hunt led them to coin the term 420—and they would use it whenever they wanted to refer to cannabis.
So the question is—how did a group of high schoolers manage to popularize 420? That’s because of a connection between some of the Waldos and the band The Grateful Dead.
Supposedly, 420 was a common phrase backstage at Grateful Dead concerts, and the phrase caught on among staff and fans. It was until the early 1990s that a reporter from High Times Magazine wrote about 420 after hearing it backstage at a Grateful Dead concert.
After the publication in High Times, the usage and popularity of 420 skyrocketed—and the rest is history.
Alternate 4/20 History
Not everyone is convinced about this story of 420, and some people think there are a few alternative theories.
One theory suggests that 420 started because there are 420 active chemicals in cannabis. There are many active chemicals in cannabis, such as various cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.The only thing is, there are actually many more compounds, and estimates think there are around 500 active chemicals in cannabis.
One of the most fringe theories thinks that 420 might go back to the 1930s. In 1939, famous author H.P. Lovecraft wrote a short story called In the Walls of Eryx. In the story, there are “mirage-plants” that seem similar to cannabis, and Lovecraft mentions the time 4:20 in the story.
Why Is 420 Important?
420 is important because it usually refers to the most important stoner holiday—April 20th. The thing is, 4/20 was originally a counterculture holiday to protest cannabis legalization.
We have to remember that for a long time, cannabis had a severe social and legal stigma. 4/20 was a way to not only embrace cannabis but also to protest against injustices within the US.
However, not everyone saw it that way, and many people use the term and holiday to get high and have fun. After all, the meaning of 420 varies from person to person.
Perhaps that’s the true power of 420—it stands for all aspects of cannabis—whether that’s for recreation or legalization.
Celebrate This 4/20 With Incredible Cannabinoids
Now that cannabis is firmly in the mainstream, 4/20 isn’t much of a counterculture holiday anymore. Perhaps that’s a good thing because it’s showing how legalization is beginning to shift public perception.
Still, the fight isn’t over, and nationwide legalization may still be far off. That’s why this 4/20, you can be in solidarity with cannabis legalization or just have fun with different cannabinoid products like CBD and Delta-8 THC.
However, you’ll want to get the highest-quality cannabinoid products that are lab-tested. To do that, all you need to do is go to Simply Crafted.
Simply Crafted has every CBD and Delta-8 product you could ever want. That includes edibles, concentrates, flowers, vape pens, and much more.Head on over to Simply Crafted and celebrate this 4/20 by finding the right cannabinoid product for you.