Kuznetsov Igor' Anatol'evich, Candidate of historical sciences, senior researcher, research Laboratory for economic and social history, Institute of Social Sciences, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (82 Vernadskogo avenue, Moscow, Russia), E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Background. The problematic context of the research is the discussion about the level, direction and pace of agricultural development of the Russian Empire in the late 19th – early 20th centuries. The purpose of the article is to calculate the annual values of grain and potato production per capita in each of the Volga region provinces and on average in European Russia, and to analyze the dynamics of this indicator from 1883 to 1913.
Materials and methods. The main source for the study is crops farming statistics of the Central Statistical Committee. The indicators of gross harvest of rye, wheat, oats, barley, spelt, buckwheat, millet, peas, corn and potatoes were used. All data are calculated in ponds. Potatoes are summed with cereals in a 4:1 ratio. The data on the annual population are used on the basis of the calculation made by a demographer V. Zaitsev in 1927. The geographical scope of the study covers 10 provinces: Astrakhan, Kazan, Kostroma, Nizhny Novgorod, Penza, Samara, Saratov, Simbirsk, Tver, Yaroslavl. The analysis of the dynamics is carried out by annual and average multi-year values. The net-importing and net-exporting provinces are treated separately.
Results. The analysis showed significant differences between the provinces in the level and dynamics of the studied indicator. Samara and Astrakhan provinces had positive dynamics of grain production per capita. Tver, Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Nizhny Novgorod and Simbirsk provinces showed a deteriorating tendency. The provinces of Kazan, Saratov and Penza showed undulating fluctuations. The level of per capita production above the average in European Russia remained in Penza, Simbirsk, Saratov provinces, below the average Russian – Astrakhan, Tver, Yaroslavl, Kostroma and Nizhny Novgorod. Samara province from the level close to the average Russian developed to a much higher one, Kazan province – reduced production to a below average one.
Conclusions. The increasing trend of bread and potato production per capita in Russia as a whole includes multidirectional trends in the provinces, which belong to different natural-geographical and economic types. The prospect of further research is to find out to what extent the restructuring of agriculture and diversification of farmers’ incomes took place in the regions of reduction of per capita grain production.
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