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worthy immigrants. To every family, when desired, it advances $25 for the expenses of the journey, assigns gratuitously 40 acres to each man on his arrival, and further promises to assist with a loan of $50. The only great landlord is the emperor or the state. Serfdom has never existed east of the Urals. Even political conditions, as affecting the colonist, are not greatly unlike those west of the Mississippi before the construction of the Pacific Railroad. The present population is over 7,000,000 persons. Among them are convicts and descendants of convict stock. None the less this class forms already an inconsiderable proportion. It is probably no greater, if as great, as among the Americans at the outbreak of the Revolution.

The impartial story of immigration to the trans-Atlantic colonies in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries is not congenial to our ancestral and material pride. Nine of the colonies were officially penal stations, to which about. 2,000 convicts were sent annually for many years. From 1715 to 1765 more than 70,000 such persons were sent over, among them 10,000 from the Old Bailey alone.

In 1787 Botany Bay was made a convict station, that it might in that capacity replace the then independent American States. It is estimated that today in the newly federated Commonwealth of Australia through the veins of three persons out of every seven flows convict blood. In Australia, as in America, what was evil among the early settlers has been largely absorbed in the virgin political soil. Among a new people only the brave and hardy qualities tend to perpetuate themselves and to endure. So is it and so will it be in Siberia. Adullam's Cave, first the rendezvous of outlaws, became the scene and source of heroism and accomplishment unsurpassed in the Bible.

In the Awakening of the East," Pierre Leroy-Beaulieu gives a vivid

picture of the various groups of present colonists at their nightly campings, the men unsaddling the horses, the women going to the springs and preparing food, the children playing, and some old man seated by the roadside reading the Bible to attentive listeners. The stock now peopling Siberia is that from which empires are made. Partially delivered from old traditions, equal in the democracy of labor, and forced to meet new conditions and new exigencies, Siberia is to solve political problems with which old European Russia is unable to grapple. The sun of political regeneration in the Russian Empire shines from the East.


The currents of history are prone to follow the beds of rivers, and commerce at first wanders along the roads which nature herself has marked out. Until four centuries ago the East and the West poured toward and across the Mediterranean to reach and benefit each other with the products of their agriculture and industry. The discovery of the Cape of Good Hope and the circumnavigation of Africa forced the abandonment of this ancient route, dealt the death blow to the princely cities of the Mediterranean, and centered the world's front in the British Islands and Holland. Now we are the amazed spectators of the beginning of that which is to make the world again change its base-commercial, political, strategic, and perhaps religious. Words can hardly exaggerate the momentous significance of the Trans-Siberian Railway, a work not yet completed, and the parts already in operation not yet beyond the initial, experimental stage. Even when its rails are at last in place and Vladivostok and Port Arthur are in full connection with St. Petersburg and Odessa, and the trains conveying passengers and freight begin to run with regularity and dis

patch between the distant termini, the incalculable consequences of the vast enterprise will be only in their beginning. Every time the whistle of the locomotive blows, in its blast is the call not to resurrection-for in that northern Asiatic vastitude there is no dead pastbut to the new, first birth of Siberia.


In 1891 the first coupons were issued for the building of this railway. In December, 1892, the work was begun. A highway was to be pushed from St. Petersburg to the Pacific, a band of steel 5,852 miles long, binding the extremities of the empire and over its polished track affording an unrivalled route for the commingling of East and West and of their measureless products. From Paris to Vladivostok the journey by passenger and traffic was to be made in twelve days, and later on in ten. From Paris to Pekin in thirteen days, to Hongkong in seventeen days, diminishing the expense in money and in time by a third or a half.

This railroad was to be financiered, constructed, and administered not by private enterprise but by the state. Hence its object was not by financial returns to swell the revenues of giant corporations or individual capitalists. The profit and loss account on its pecuniary side was a minor consideration. Its single design and aim was to strengthen and develop the Russian Empire, and as an ultimate result to insure that empire the dominion of the East, the mastery of Asia.


As the strategic position of Russia over against Asia is unique, so is this railroad unique in its possibilities. Whatever acquisitions Great Britain or Germany now holds, or may hereafter obtain on

the Asiatic continent, those possessions are remote by thousands of miles from their base, and their efficiency depends upon a difficult and precarious connection through those thousand miles of sea and land. Nor can those possessions be brought into much more intimate relation with each other and with the home empire than they already are. That is, for Great Britain or Germany or any other power to devise a political or strategic rival to the Trans-Siberian Railway is an utter impossibility. It remains, and must remain, the most stupendous agent in determining the destiny of the globe that has yet been conceived by man. It is to be maintained, as it was first originated, under the most favorable geographic circumstances which a state has ever enjoyed for the accomplishment of a gigantic undertaking. There is no assertion here that as an achievement of engineering skill this railway surpasses or even equals a trans-American railroad from New York to San Francisco, or a transAfrican railroad from Alexandria to the Cape. Viewed merely as a railroad, it may in every respect be inferior to either; its trains may be less commodious or less luxurious, its locomotives less powerful or less swift, its technical management less efficient or less sagacious; but, regarding simply geographic position, having in mind only where it runs, what it connects, and what it must inevitably effect, nowhere can experience or imagination suggest a rival. The nearest approach to rivalry would be afforded by some line crossing China from west to east. But the western terminus of such a line would of necessity be close upon Russian Siberia or Russian Turkestan; it would traverse only a moribund or disintegrating Asiatic state; and whatever might be the governing board of its construction and administration, it would indirectly, if not directly, be subject to Russian influ



The Russian Empire is the largest economic unit in the world, and disposes of a larger capital than any other corporation, all under the impulse of a single will. In Siberia more than one-third of the land—that is, more than 1,700,000 square miles is the property of the government. To open up the fields, and utilize the rivers, and work the mines, and push the industries, and swell the armies, only men are needed, and we have seen how every possible facility and encouragement is afforded by the government to the desirable colonist. The supremacy of mind over the obstacles of nature is as yet far from complete. Though man can resist heat and cold better than any other animal, he is still profoundly affected by its extremes. Science, at the rate of five or six miles an hour, can drive the ironclad of 2,000 or even 10,000 tons through ice 8, 10, and 12 feet in thickness, and between the piled-up frozen walls open a path for commerce to follow in its wake. Each coming year is to see, as each recent year has seen, some new advance over barriers once deemed impassable, some new victory over obstacles once deemed invincible. What may not limitless resources effect when put at the disposal of profound sagacity and of absolute will!

Material advancement is by no means all nor is it the chief consideration. The whole Russian political system has been built upon the broad substructure of Slavic nature as that nature has been shaped by its geographic environment. However repugnant to every instinct of our American life that system may be, it is no creation of accident or arbitrary caprice, but of the inflexible circumstances that determined its form. In new conditions in the larger area and on an even vaster scale, it is again to be adjusted in the manner most congenial and most beneficial to the Slav.


In America we still cherish the Monroe Doctrine and regard it as an essential part of our international law. Russia's boundaries in Asia stretch for more than 4,000 miles along the frontiers of Asiatic states, and she is vitally affected by the conditions, by the disturbances and disorders existing in those states. In comparison, no other European nation is affected by them. affected by them. By what might be called a Russian Monroe Doctrine, which would be as justifiable and as logical as our own, Russia might claim to be the sole guardian, and, in necessity, the sole arbiter of her Asiatic neighbors. Siberia and the Trans-Siberian Railway are in time to render such procedure a fact. Russia, not so much pursuing a definite Eastern policy as fitting in to the exigencies of her Eastern situation, has acted and still acts in the old hemisphere exactly as the United States have acted and still act in the new. She has simply conformed to the law of her being and to the logic of events. The "rectification of frontiers" to the advantage of the more powerful has been the course which the greater states without exception have followed from the beginning and will probably follow to the end of time. The continuous history of the United States, and of Great Britain in particular debar those nations from drawing up indictment against Russian aggression in Manchuria or anywhere else. Maladministered by the Chinese as far as it has been administered at all, never an integral part of China proper, the already virtually accomplished absorption of Manchuria by Russia furthers the welfare and prosperity of that province and of the Eastern world.


The recent troubles in China present only an acute but temporary phase of the

greater Eastern question. The smaller Eastern question centers upon the Bosphorus, and is that wherein Constantinople and the Ottoman Empire are involved. Formerly it seemed to cover all the political sky. It is overshadowed today by the problem of surpassing magnitude still farther east. The factors in the greater Eastern question are various and many; yet there is one factor that dwarfs them all. It is Russia in her expanding, vivifying march across Siberia. With her, as with no other nation, goes what to the Oriental counts more even than armies, and that is prestige. Her only possible Asiatic antagonist is Japan; but the nature which thousands of years have inwrought cannot be radically changed by the signature of a parchment or by an act of the will. The Oriental kisses not the hand

he loves the dearest, but the hand he fears the most. Despite the newly assumed garments of western civilization, the Japanese are Oriental to the core. The only European nation which can at all vie with Russia is Great Britain; but in such possible contest Russia would strike from near at hand and Great Britain from far away. Moreover, not only have Great Britain's hands been tied and her resources strained, but her military renown has, as the Oriental judges, been shattered in the South African war. Divergent interests and mutual jealousies prevent a combination of European powers under her leadership against Russia, such as she was able to accomplish against France in the Napoleonic wars. From the background of Siberia one figure stands forth distinct-the triumphant Slav!





F the countries that have taken an active part in the development of geographic knowledge Germany has always ranked among the foremost. The love of travel, of strange adventure, of tales true and tales false which touch the imagination, is innate in the Teutonic race. It made the northern Vikings discoverers of America long before Columbus; it unveiled to them the inhospitable coasts of Greenland and Iceland; it gave rise to the first known North Polar expedition-the expedition in ultimam septentrionis axem of 1140 A. D., of which Adam von Bremen has left us an account. Indeed, we may trace it down even to the recent travels of the heroes of discovery of the last century; for, unlike the explorers of


most other nations, the German travelers were uninfluenced by political or economic motives. It is only within the last twenty years that Germany has begun to found colonies; yet it has not been the absence of the colonial spirit or blindness to the advantages of colonization which kept her in the rear. know that when the New World was discovered German merchants, the Fuggers of Augsburg, then the chiefs of the East Indian commerce, were quick to grasp the possibilities of the situation, and founded branch establishments of their houses in Lisbon, and in the coffee and cocoa districts of South America; but the sad political conditions of the empire at that time put an early end to these aspirations, just as it did to the attempts

of the Great Elector one hundred years later to found colonies on the coast of Guinea; and so the era which laid the foundation of the naval and commercial power of all the states of western Europe proved to be the ruin of that of Germany, since the lines of trade which had enriched it were now forsaken and the new ones were for her unattainable.

But so strong was the vitality of the geographical spirit in Germany that even those sad times could not quite overcome it. If the nation could not help being cut off from the actual progress of discovery, it could partake in it mentally. The eyes of German observers followed the navigators and explorers to the unknown lands across the sea; they listened to the reports that came from there, and wrote them down and printed and propagated them, and it seems that through all the epoch of the discoveries books of voyage and travel were in no country read more eagerly than in Germany. Peddlers sold thousands of pamphlets dealing with true and false stories of the fabulous countries of the West, and German Landsknechte left their homes and sold their services to the Spaniard and the Portuguese in order to get there. One of these men, Ulrich Schmiedel, wrote an account of his American experiences which to this day is one of the most interesting sources for facts relating to the state of South America at the times of the conquest.


With this elementary interest another and a higher interest went hand in hand. From the standpoint of natural curiosity which delights in the strange unknown, attention soon passed to the examination of the facts related, to the putting together and comparing of the different reports, to the distinguishing of what was true or false, important or unimportant, to the arranging and classifying of the

results obtained. Undisturbed by material and dynastic interests which in the conquering countries directed attention toward certain parts of the world, to the neglect of the rest, this quiet progress found in Germany the best conditions for development, and thus, while the conquistadores enriched their countries with gold and silver, the German geographers found treasures of another kind in discovering, or rather rediscovering, the scientific conception of the earth's face, the application to the enlarged cosmographical horizon of the scientific geographic methods of antiquity. In one word, they found the spirit of modern scientific geography. It was in Germany that the first globes and charts. of the world were made, that in consequence of this a thorough reform of mapdrawing and projection took place, that the idea of the atlas was first conceived and realized, that the first modern descriptions of the world, and the first systematic handbooks of general and physical geography were printed.


The Bavarian, Johannes Müller, known better as Regiomontanus (after his native city, Königsberg in Franconia), first thought of constructing an earth's globe toward the end of the fifteenth century; the idea was carried out by one of his countrymen, Martin Behaim, of Nuremberg. Behaim, one of the few Germans who took an active part in the great discoveries, had accompanied Diego Cao on his voyage to the west coast of Africa in 1484-'85, and after his return made the famous globe still preserved in the "Germanische Museum" at Nuremberg, which has brought down to our days the image of how the world was conceived in the scientific mind immediately before the discovery of America, for the globe. was finished in 1492, a few months before the arrival of Columbus at the land

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