MH: Bob’s vision of a private, drug-focused library was appealing, and he convinced me to give it a shot. He went ahead and rented a one-room office at the intersection of Columbus and Stockton, and furnished it with a desk, chairs and bookshelves. To help pay the rent, we sublet space to the Church of the Tree of Life, one of the first psychedelic churches whose sacraments were mostly obscure psychoactive plants not yet declared illegal. Michael Aldrich, the first of cannabis history and folklore and an early marijuana reform activist who marketed the first hemp rolling papers, came aboard as curator a year later.
The complaint published when Ulbricht was arrested included information the FBI gained from a system image of the Silk Road server collected on 23 July 2013. It noted that, "From February 6, 2011 to July 23, 2013 there were approximately 1,229,465 transactions completed on the site. The total revenue generated from these sales was 9,519,664 Bitcoins, and the total commissions collected by Silk Road from the sales amounted to 614,305 Bitcoins. These figures are equivalent to roughly $ billion in revenue and $ million in commissions, at current Bitcoin exchange rates...", according to the September 2013 complaint, and involved 146,946 buyers and 3,877 vendors.  According to information users provided upon registering, 30 percent were from the United States, 27 percent chose to be "undeclared", and beyond that, in descending order of prevalence: the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Canada, Sweden, France, Russia, Italy, and the Netherlands. During the 60-day period from 24 May to 23 July, there were 1,217,218 messages sent over Silk Road's private messaging system.