James Buchanan Duke: Tobacco and power
American pioneers and settlers gave Indians alcohol; the Indians returned the favor by introducing them to tobacco. But it took one man, James Buchanan Duke, to make cigarette smoking a popular habit with a vast part of America's population. Named after the newly elected president, but called "Buck" by friends and family, James Buchanan Duke was born in 1856. Buck's father, Washington, a farmer who lived near Durham, N.C., a small railroad depot town, was a Union sympathizer who was drafted by the Confederacy. When he returned home at war's end, he found his farm ransacked. The looters, however, overlooked a small log storage barn stacked with tobacco.