Clinical research with hallucinogens has resumed after a generation’s hiatus. To place these new studies in context, this article reviews the history of hallucinogens’ use and abuse, discusses their pharmacological properties, and highlights previous human studies. Research with lysergic acid diethylamide and related hallucinogens with thousands of patients and control subjects was associated with acceptable safety when subjects were carefully screened, supervised, and followed up. Data were generated regarding hallucinogens’ psychopharmacology, overlap with endogenous psychoses, and psychotherapeutic efficacy. Current American and European studies emphasize systematic psychopharmacology, in addition to psychotherapy protocols. Human hallucinogen research will help define unique mind-brain interfaces, and provide mechanistic hypotheses and treatment options for psychiatric disorders. It is critical that human hallucinogen research in the 1990s make use of state of the art methodologies, or consensually define when modifications are required. Training and supervisory issues also must be explicitly addressed.