What could be the population of the Crimea?Librarians note that within the last year popularity of the remarkable novel of Vasily Aksenov “Island of Crimea“ sharply increased. The author, perhaps, did not assume that his fantastic book will become in something prophetical. However it such became.
The Crimea which is thought up by Vasily Aksenov is the island that is announced already by the name of the book. Chongar - not a narrow isthmus, but the passage, rather wide to prevent export of proletarian revolution from the continent. Thanks to such geographical nonsense the possibility of coexistence of two states appeared: the Brezhnev`s Soviet Union and alternative Russia which considers itself as the right successor and the cultural successor of the Russian Empire. This Russia occupies microscopic part of the former huge territory, but develops very dynamically. The economy created on this plot of land covers all Soviet industry and agriculture as a bull a sheep. The Crimean Russia is not recognized by the UN, but, despite it, quite respected around the world. Exactly thanks to this Russia in the world it is not a shame to be called Russian yet.
However, the Crimean youth does not consider as Russians of any more. In their opinion, on the island the new unprecedented nation “yaks“, wildish mix from all tribes and the people which were proved on the island of Crimea quite “cooked“.
There is such lovely fairy tale which was much amusing hearts of the Soviet dissidents at the end of 1970 - x and at the beginning of 1980 - x years.
“Island of Crimea“, really, good book. But the speech now not about it. And not about the thought-up island of Crimea, and about the real Crimean peninsula included in structure of the Russian Empire on April 19, 1783 together with a big piece of Black Sea Coast which was called the Wild field before.
These places were never overpopulated. By estimates of scientists in the territory of the peninsula in 1783 about 60 thousand people lived. Steppes of the northern Crimea, apparently, adapted for intensive agriculture, did not meet expectations. Too little here was fresh water. Even underground sources did not solve this problem. The water going from wells was salty. Therefore in the spring, so far in the steppe there were herbs, and in streams there was water, here grazed cattle, generally horses. With approach of a summer heat pastures burned out and shepherds took away herds on the South, in the foothills, to those places where today the city of Simferopol, or even on mountain pastures is located.
The low Crimean Mountains was most densely populated. There was always enough water, there was enough also earth suitable for processing. The Tatar villages densely nested in mountains. There was a hansky capital, Bakhchisarai. The Crimea was considered as the independent khanate, the satellite of the Ottoman Empire. And in this quality periodically attacked northern neighbors: Russia and Poland. The Crimean ford in Moscow over which Krymsky Bridge towers now, - memory of those times when from here the long road to the hostile Crimea began.
Today the southern coast of the Crimea is considered the most fertile place, simply paradise on the earth. At the end of 18 - go centuries there were here several small towns which residents were engaged in fishing and transportation of goods through the sea, to Istanbul and back. It was not considered as smuggling because the southern coast of the Crimea before arrival of the Russian troops belonged to the Ottoman Empire. The power of the Crimean khan did not extend here. Around coastal towns wild mountains towered. Sometimes these towns were not even connected by the overland road. Why it if there is a sea, and in each family - the sailboat or a launch?
The only serious product of export of the Crimea of that time was salt which was extracted on the Lake Sivash and then on carts took out on the North. People who were engaged in this trade inhabitants of the Crimea were not. They were called chumak. About them and about their transport ways from the Crimea to Ukraine and to Russia there was a memory in modern Ukrainian. “Milky Way“ on - Ukrainian “the Chumatsky way“: allegedly carried chumak on the sky salt and spilled out, nazvezdit.
Reception of the Crimean peninsula in structure of Russia was absolutely bloodless. It is simple how in the operetta “Wedding in the Robin“, the power once again exchanged. By the way, before the Russian troops several times entered the Crimea, and after left from there, but not because they were restricted by infinite hordes of Krymchaks or Turks but because too far and too expensive was to carry supplies here. Only after on flanks the Turkish army was driven away to Danube and to Kuban, the southern steppes between Volga and Danube became safe. Then - that there was also, at last, an opportunity to locate in the Crimea.
Having conquered the Crimea, Russia received lands extensive and fertile, but truly desert. Before entry into structure of the Russian Empire it was impossible to live settled in the Wild field. Any housing, any crops right there took down hordes of nomads.
To occupy these lands would not represent work, be not in Russia of a serfdom. But people free (in every sense) in the empire were not. Only Pavel Ivanovich Chichikov organized purchase of peasants for the purpose of resettlement them to the Kherson province and that only because these peasants already died.
The empress Catherine II understood all importance of colonization of new lands and solved this problem first of all, calling settlers from - for borders: from Germany, from Switzerland and from France. This policy bore considerable fruits. Northern Black Sea Coast became covered by a large number of the German farms, villages, villages and towns. These settlements existed here up to summer of 1941 when they were liquidated, and sent the population to the Urals, to Kazakhstan and to Siberia.
The French who “came in large numbers“ in much smaller quantity located in the basic in the cities and in ports: in Nikolaev, in Kherson and in Odessa which originally was the district center of the Kherson province. The most known “the French trace“ of those times - the main street of Odessa, Deribasovskaya. The Greeks running from the territories which were under the rule of the Ottoman Empire located in seaports also coreligion by Russian. Bulgarians and Serbians lodged, mainly, in rural areas.
One more settlement stream was Jewish. To the partition of Poland Jews within the empire were practically not, and here they appeared, and in a huge number. The central power was not glad to this “gift“ at all. Large officials were sent to lands of again acquired western provinces for studying of “Jewish problem“ (among them and the poet G. R. Derzhavin). Studying stated the terrifying poverty and density, but all offers were consolidated mostly to a violent baptism.
While things are being decided, demographic pressure played a role. Jews began to leave the overpopulated and poor towns of Lithuania and Poland on the South where with emergence of the cities also the possibility of earnings appeared. The outcome went through the cities and places which soon began to be famous as “Jewish“: Berdichev, Kiev, Bila Tserkva, Vinnytsia, Balta, Odessa. Thanks to activity of the Jewish businessmen Odessa became the center of export of grain from Russia and Ukraine to the European ports. Many Jews settled in Nikolaev where there were main shipyards of the Black Sea fleet.
All these resettlements on new lands were proved by quite natural reasons. But statesmen on that also exist to think out projects which differently as extravagant you will not call. So, for example, there was a project of settling of actually empty Crimean territories by citizens of the British crown.
At the end of 1785 the deputy minister of foreign affairs prince A. A. Bezborodko gave an assignment to the Russian ambassador in Great Britain, the count S. R. Vorontsov, to find out a question of possible resettlement on “a pustoporozhniya our lands“ the British criminals condemned on penal servitude.
It is necessary to tell that the British machine of justice worked smoothly. Unlike Russia ferocity of punishment was not counterbalanced with a non-obligation of execution of a sentence here. For small theft without any indulgence of the person could hang up and banish on penal servitude, usually to North America. But just at this time in the American British colonies revolution began, and the system of execution of punishments started slipping. The barges with convicts moored at coast of the Thames became the crowded floating prisons. So on the Russian offer the favorable answer could arrive.
Semyon Romanovich Vorontsov (1744-1832) was an outstanding diplomat and the father of other of Vorontsov, Mikhail Semenovich (1782-1856) . The last became famous just for development of Black Sea Coast, and a bit later - the Caucasus and Transcaucasia. It we remember every time, remembering Vorontsov Palace in the Crimea or the Vorontsovsky ladder in Odessa.
It is necessary to tell that S. R. Vorontsov was delighted not with idea of the administration. But executing an assignment, he found out that British in principle agree to occupy steppes of the northern Crimea. And not only convicts, but also the Blacks who are taken out from the British colonies. Reporting on it on the administration, he was not afraid to express the negative opinion on this invention which was reduced to the following arguments. Resettlement of convicts to the Crimea will not promote economic recovery of edge because neither in crafts, nor in arable farming the British lumpens it is not expert. The banished criminals should be protected that they did not do harm to not numerous local population. Besides, the territories which are again won by Russia will get an unflattering image in the opinion of all educated Europe.
The St. Petersburg administration listened to strong protests of S. R. Vorontsov. As a result the plan of settling of the neogenic Taurian province by the English convicts in action was not put. Fortunately whether, unfortunately - it is better for the science fiction writers working in a genre of alternative history to judge it. For books the such name “Taurian Australia“ is not worse, than “Island of Crimea“.