1880 CE
James Albert Bonsack invents the first cigarette rolling machine

As the demand for cigarettes started significantly increasing in the 1870s, a prize of US$ 75,000 was offered to anyone who could invent a cigarette-rolling machine. James Albert Bonsack took that challenge and worked on developing such a machine for the next several years (even leaving school to devote his time to it). In 1880, his first working prototype was unfortunately destroyed by a fire, but Bonsack rebuilt it and filed a patent application later that year. Bonsack's machine revolutionized the cigarette industry, as it was able to produce 200 cigarettes per minute (compared to an average of 4 cigarettes per minutes if hand-rolled).

Source: Poling, Jim (2012). Smoke Signals. Toronto: Dundurn.

Drugs: Tobacco
Regions: USA (United States of America)
Topics: Cultivation, production and trade