Cigarette smoking, an uncommon behavior in 1900, increased at an epidemic pace throughout this century, peaking in 1964 when more than 40% of all adult Americans smoked. Since that time, smoking has decreased at a slow but steady rate, falling to about 28% of all adults or 49 million smokers by 1988. Each year, approximately 435,000 Americans, or one of every five deaths, will result from smoking. If current trends continue, 22% of Americans (43 million people) will still be smoking in the year 2000. Women, blacks, and poorly educated Americans will be smoking at a disproportionately high rate.