This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract To determine what the tobacco industry knew about menthol cigarettes and the initiation of smoking. Methods Based on Food and Drug Administration staff-supplied research questions we used a snowball sampling strategy to search the Legacy Tobacco Documents Library http: Of the approximately 11 million documents available in the LTDL, the iterative searches returned tens of thousands of results. Researchers reviewed documents and were deemed relevant to one or more of the research questions. Results The documents show that menthol is added to cigarettes in part because it is known to be an attractive feature to inexperienced smokers who perceive menthol cigarettes as less harsh and easier to smoke and because of their availability from friends and family.