This article was originally published on Marijuana.com
By Paul Winter
Celebrate natural beauty. Open spaces. Legal weed.
On August 1, 1876, Ulysses S. Grant signed Proclamation 230 admitting Colorado as the 38th state of the union. Since this was just 28 days after our nation’s Centennial, Colorado became known as the “Centennial State.” Nine years prior, in December 1867, Denver had become the official capital of Colorado by territorial legislative law.
Colorado is one of only two states, the other being Wyoming, whose borders consist of just four perfectly straight lines. Once inside those borders there are some straight line drives across Colorado’s eastern high-planes deserts; but the state is bisected by the Rocky Mountains, and the western half of the state is laced with a network of mountain ranges, meandering roadways and elevation gains that seem to go straight up.
Colorado is literally the highest US state with every square inch at least 3,300 ft. above sea level. Those four straight lines also contain 75% of the land in the US that is over 10,000 ft. As you might expect, Colorado has quite a few elevation records. Some of the more notable high points include:
- The highest paved road in North America (14,258 ft.)
- The world’s highest alligator farm (7,664 ft.)
- The highest car tunnel (11,000 ft.)
- The highest incorporated city in the US (10,439 ft.)
The state was named after the Colorado River, which the Spanish called Rio Colorado, or “colored river,” from all the silt that carried down from the mountains.
Colorado is an independent, progressive state with its own mindset and way of going about things. It was the second state to grant women suffrage in November of 1873. In 1976, Colorado became the only US state to reject hosting the Olympics, after considering infrastructure costs and environmental concerns.
What about The Weed?
On November 7, 2000, Colorado voters approved Amendment 20, allowing medical marijuana to be prescribed to patients. And in November 2012, Colorado passed Amendment 64 legalizing recreational marijuana — it went into effect January 1, 2014.
So Colorado has plenty to celebrate this August 1, and we should all join in and celebrate accordingly.