Making Homes in Arid Regions

Among the several exhaustive papers on different subjects read at the Trans-Mississippi Commercial Congress, that by Elwood Mead on "Needs of Irrigation" attracted great attention. Professor Mead is the expert in charge of the irrigation investigations and office of experiment statistics under the department of agriculture, and is recognized everywhere as an authority on irrigation problems. His address in part follows:—

The arid region embraces an area larger than any European country, save Russia, and is capable of supporting a larger population than now lives east of the Mississippi River. In this vast district, when reclaimed, homes may be made for a population of a hundred million souls. To effect this result is a task inferior to no other in the realm of statesmanship or social economics. Its public lands comprise the nation's farm, and are the chief hope of those who have little besides industry and self-denial with which to win landed independence. As it is now, this land has but little value. In many places a township would not support a settler and his family. This is not because the land lacks fertility, but because it lacks moisture. Where rivers have been turned from their course the products which have resulted equal in excellence and amount those of the most favored district of ample rainfall.

Interest in Christian Science
June 28, 1900

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