Depression but No Panic in Jewish Colonies in Russia, Smidovitch Reports After Tour

(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)

A report concerning the present conditions obtaining in the Jewish colonies in Crimea as a result of the bad crop was brought to Moscow by Smidovitch, vice-president of the Soviet Union, who returned today from his tour of the Jewish colonies there.

To the correspondent of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, whom he received in the presence of Michael Kalinin, the vice-president of the Soviet Union stated that he found depression but no panic among the Jewish colonists in Jankoy, Simferopol, and the district of the Agrojoint colonies.

Their winter sowing has been spoiled, in some colonies to the extent of fifty percent and in others more. However, there is no crisis, he stated. The colonists suffered from cold during the entire spring, even up to May 1, in houses with single windows, without bread or forage. Yet the old colonists of 1925 and 1926 are not discouraged and consider their difficulties to be of a temporary nature. They are in the meantime sowing their fields, mainly with maize to provide food for the livestock until the coming year.

The spring crop is hopeful because of the rains during the last few weeks. The cooperative societies are helping. the Jewish colonists, providing bread and potatoes.

At the Moscow office of the Agrojoint the following statement was given out today to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency:

“Unfortunate climatic circumstances have affected the Jewish colonies in the districts of Cherson and Krivoy Rog. Their winter crop has been almost entirely frozen. In the Crimean new colonies of the Agrojoint the situation of the winter wheat is considered satisfactory and is now improving because of the rains. The colonies affected have completed their resowing with maize and potatoes to cover the forage deficit until the new crop.

“The general situation of the spring sowing in the Ukraine and also the winter sowing in Crimea is satisfactory.”

Mr. Zak, the representative of the Jewish Colonization. Association, describing the situation in the Ica colonies, stated to the correspondent:

“The extent of the damages wrought in the Ica colonies by the frost and storms is not exactly known. Reports received so far from the old and new colonies say that the damages vary from ten to one hundred percent in the fields of the different districts. Energetic measures have been taken to relieve the suffering settlers.”

The “Emes”. Yiddish Communist daily, writing today editorially, says that the winter crop in the Cherson district has been entirely destroyed. The paper urges that the problem be solved by providing the Jewish colonists with bread until the new crop is reaped. There is no ground for panic the paper says.

The “Emes” gives the following figures on the number of families and the extent of the area under their cultivation in the affected districts: In Yidendorf. 463 families. 3400 desiatin; Sholem Aleichem. 361 families, 2849 desiatin; Emes, 2900 desitin: Ershtmai, 3214 desiatin; Notheim, 2170 desiatin: Kazkoroff, 400 desiatin; Yishey, 600 desiatin. All need resowing.

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