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History

America's First Heroin Epidemic A Century Ago

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The opiate crisis of the late 19th century was started by drug manufacturers, doctors and pharmacists.

The year was 1908 and an Ohio doctor, appointed by President Theodore Roosevelt as the nation's first Opium Commissioner, warned that Americans "have become the greatest drug fiends in the world." If the sentiment seems all too familiar in the grips of our current opioid epidemic, you'll find there are many similarities, and some shocking differences, between current times and a drug crisis that dates all the way back to the Civil War.

Washington Post National Security Correspondent Nick Miroff writes about America's long and difficult history with opioids in a recent article for the Post. He recently spoke with us about his research into America's century-old drug epidemic. To read his full article click here.