A little history of the 420 420, 4:20 or 4/20 (pronounced four-twenty in English).
This expression is enough to cause shivers in cannabis lovers, this expression used in North America is a way of identifying with the counter-culture surrounding cannabis.
The 420 also designates the time of day when it is 4:20 a.m., the perfect time to light up a cannabis joint. Everyone knows the tradition of the 420 but do you really know the history of the 420? The origins of the 420. There are many myths and legends surrounding the history of the 420 and although the original dates are unclear, what happened on that day is very clear: many people meet on April 20 to light a cannabis joint. Smoking cannabis on the day of April 20, preferably at 4:20 a.m., or 4:20 p.m. has become a kind of Oktoberfest but for cannabis.
A day of celebration dedicated to the consumption of this substance.
But then why this date of April 20 was chosen rather than another date? Where exactly does this tradition come from?
The origins of the 420.
The tradition began in 1971 with a group of teenagers better known as the Waldos, who grew up in Marin County, California. Their names “Waldos” come from the word “wall” because this group of teenagers liked to hang out near a wall at San Rafael High School. The Waldos included Mark Gravitch, Dave Reddix and Steve Capper in their ranks. They first tried to protect their identity, to preserve their future lives as responsible adults.
The founding fathers of cannabis history.
Back then, in the 1970s, this group of friends met after school at 4:20. They were at that time looking for a mythical and legendary abandoned weed plantation not far from the Point Reyes Coast Guard barracks. Before heading out into the wild surroundings of Point Reyes they smoked a joint or two. They searched for weeks. They found nothing. Even though they continued (unsuccessfully) trying to find the secret weed stash, the meeting time stuck. Eventually it became a school code for anything cannabis-related. A legend that lasts. The term 4/20 should have died in the region with the end of the Waldo. Except Waldo Dave’s older brother was a friend of Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh. The Waldo’s were the “patient zero” of 4/20, Lesh and the Grateful Dead were the vector.
They picked up the term and carried it with them for 35 years of touring the world, smoking joints, popularizing the use of the term 4/20 when discussing weed. Once in the hands of the whimsical, subversive stoner community — who have always loved the teeming jargon attached to their love of weed — the 4/20 made its way into a lot of fun places.
Very quickly, this story, or rather versions of this story, spread across the United States.