The association between cigarette smoking and cervical cancer has been demonstrated in numerous prior studies. As part of population-based case-control studies of cancers of the vulva, vagina, cervix, anus, and penis in relation to infection with human papillomavirus, conducted in western Washington State and the province of British Columbia from the mid 1980s until the present time, the authors have collected detailed information on smoking history. The proportion of subjects who were current smokers of cigarettes ranged from slightly over 40% among incident cases of vaginal and cervical cancer to 60% among cases of vulvar and anal cancer. In contrast, only about 25% of controls were current smokers. The adjusted odds ratios (OR) associated with current smoking were substantially elevated (OR = 1.9-14.6) for all cancer sites except cancer of the vagina (OR = 1.3). The risks tended to increase in proportion to the number of cigarettes smoked. For most cancer sites, the odds ratios associated with former smoking were substantially less than those associated with current smoking and diminished with increasing time since cessation of smoking. The authors' data and those of other investigators suggest that cigarette smoking plays a role in the etiology of anogenital cancers and that smoking has a late-stage or promotional effect.