- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
290

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH SIBERIA
this has any prospect of being realized in the near
future. But although there may thus be a division of
opinion in Russia as to the line of advance by which
the goal may be most surely reached, all parties are
agreed that Russian colonization in Asia ought to be
promoted by all the best means available. That this
view is also held in Government circles is clear from
the report of the Department of Agriculture for the
five years 1909-1913, where it is insisted that, while
much has been done for this colonization, it is still not
enough, and that it is important " to develop energeti
cally the work already begun in the colony districts,
by better preparation of the land that is to be colonized,
by the making of roads and wells, the building of
hospitals, by postal communication, and by extending
the work of education and building churches and
schools. It is also important to teach the colonists of
older standing better agricultural methods. Some effi
ciency in farming is as necessary in Siberia as elsewhere."
It is further recommended that " future colonization
ought preferably to be concentrated along the frontiers
of Asiatic Russia, the settlers in these districts being
given the maximum of Government assistance. It is
also necessary to hasten the projected system of railways
in Siberia, especially the Southern Siberian main line
through the Kirghiz Steppes. Railway construction
opens up large new fields for colonization and strengthens
the old ones," etc.
Siberia, as has been said before, is a rich country
and well worth developing. It is remarkably abundant
in minerals. Specially famous is its gold, of which
more and more is continually being found, chiefly in
Central and Eastern Siberia. In the government of
Yeniseisk gold has been found in many places, both
in the central part, where great quantities have been
290

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