The Further Growth Rate of the Jews in Russia
Assisting and promoting the settlement of Jews in Russia, Catherine II scarcely surmised that soon the historical events themselves would bring under the citizenship of the Russian Emperors, not separate small groups of Jews, as it was in the 1760's, but hundreds of thousands of individuals.
As was mentioned before, owing to the territorial changes at the end of Eighteenth and at the very beginning of Nineteenth Centuries, Russia took back a big part of her lands, which had been part of the former Kiev Russia. On these lands were found not only a native Russian-Ukrainian and Byelorussian population, but also a Jewish population solidly established during the Polish domination.
So more than half a million-citizen Jews, who, up to that time as a rule, were not allowed, appeared in Russia.
The total number of Jews of Russian citizenship in 1815 (after the completion of all the territorial changes) reached 1,200,000. They all lived outside the limit of the Russian state up to 1772, before the first division of Poland. Since they were splendidly organized as a state within a state, the Jews had their extensive self-rule, submitting not to the law of the state, but to their own Jewish laws.
One hundred years later, in 1915, there were 5 500 000 Jews in Russia. Besides that, towards t e end of Nineteenth Century, from the beginning of the Eighties, over 1,500,000 Jews had emigrated from Russia to America. That made a total Jewish population of 7,000,000.
This means that in a hundred years the number of Russian Jews increased six times. During the same period the total number of all other nationalities in Russia had increased only four times. In 1815 there were 48,000,000 people in Russia, and in 1915, 180,000,000.
It can be seen from these numbers that the growth of the Jewish population in Russia grew much faster than the rest of the population.
Without making any conclusions here, we can only note that this growth factor is very demonstrative and interesting in itself.
There is little doubt as to the accuracy of the numbers used here, since they were taken from the book of the well-known Jewish demographer J. Leshchinsky "Jewish People and Numbers", Berlin 1922. The numbers were checked and verified with the data of other demographers.