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hours. From this main line there also runs a connecting line westward to Taiyuanfu, the capital of Shansi, traversing a region very rich in soft coal. There is also the cross line connecting Kaifeng with Honanfu.
Third, the German line in Shantung from Tsingtai to Tsinanfu where it now in turn makes connection with the most recently constructed road from Pukou to Tientsin which at its southern terminus on the Yangtsze is just opposite Nanking and thus virtually connects with the railroad from Nanking to Shanghai and Hangchow.
Fourth, the French railway from Tonkin north-westerly to Yunnanfu, the capital of the Province of Yunnan, which has in my judgment been the most difficult of all to construct and the most costly in lives as well as money, and very costly to maintain on account of the frequent heavy landslides. Dear as it has cost it has, however, won for the French the domination in the trade of Yunnan. They have beaten the British who were so slow in constructing a road into Yunnan from the Burmese border. But the proposition is entirely a different one. This line from Burma would have to traverse at least two river valleys which are very difficult to cross while the French line running northwesterly has had a comparatively easy time in following up the Red River and one of its tributaries. Having seen for myself the difficulties which have been encountered in this easier route I am almost persuaded that the difficulties of the other could be taken as practically insurmountable except at most prohibitive expense.
Fifth, the British-Chinese line from Kowloon (Hongkong) to Canton, the last of the major roads which has been fully completed.
There are of course several minor roads, such as the American-built line from Canton westward to Fatshan and Samshui, the Japanese-built line from Swatow to Chowchowfu, the Shanghai-Woosung line, the Nanking City Railway, and others.
More important than these, however, are the other main trunk lines projected and in part already constructed. Most of the railroad development thus far has been confined to the
north-eastern quarter of the country. Lines connecting the north with the far south and the east with the far west are imperative and some progress is being made toward their realization.
First among these we should mention the Canton-Hankow line which with the road northward from Hankow will give an all rail connection from the metropolis of Kwangtung to the national capital. Although begun over a decade ago under the auspices of the American-China Development Company, less than a hundred miles of this road are as yet in operation. The original holding company because of their failure to keep the explicit conditions on which the concession was granted was obliged to sell out to the Chinese government, and American prestige in China suffered a severe blow. I have traversed the route of the proposed line and consider it one of the very finest propositions for the development of a coal bearing region.
Second among these projected roads, as yet but partly built, is the very important line from Hankow westward into Szechuan which will obviate the tremendous difficulties introduced by the gorges in the Yangtsze.
Another important line projected is that from Yunnanfu to the Yangtsze at Chungking.
There are many others but where the capital is to come from is a great problem. Most of the roads already built have been financed by foreign capital on the basis of concessions and some have already been handed over to the Chinese government for administration henceforth. Others have been joint enterprises in operation. Others are still completely foreign concessions and are operated as such. Only a small part of the development has been under entirely native auspices.
A good deal of the apparent opposition to the construction of railways in China on the part of the people has grown out of violation of the ubiquitous graves rather than from any inherent objection to the railway itself.
The people have now come fully to appreciate the advantages of railways and as we have already heard in this conference it was the imperial government's policy with refer
ence to railway administration that was the operating factor in starting off the revolution in Szechuan. Dr. Sun Yat Sen is now devoting all his time to the promotion of railways. Doubtless there will be within a reasonably short period tremendous development of railways in China and they in turn will have a tremendous welding effect upon the country. It is necessary that within her borders there should be developed well equipped technical schools in which the Chinese may be taught the arts and sciences necessary for the construction and maintenance of railways and other works.
There is hardly time to refer in detail to the development of the postal system or telegraph lines in China, except to point out the tremendous success with which the postal system has been developed in that full-fledged post offices with the various departments are in operation all over the country and that a letter can be sent anywhere for the sum of 1 cent of our money, and that within a radius of about 60 miles from Canton for instance, it may be sent for onequarter of an American penny.
Telegraph lines connect all provincial capitals with Peking and this system is being extended. It is not thoroughly understood as yet by all the people just how these things work and I am reminded of two instances which have come under my own observation to illustrate this.
An old man in Shantung hearing of the function of the line of wire that ran across his fields declared that men who could devise such a method for the transmission of intelligence could do anything; wherefore one of his neighbors remarked that he did not think much of it, for he himself had sat for two weeks watching that line very closely and had not yet seen anything go by.
The other instance was of Hunan carrying coolies tossing their worn-out straw sandals on the telegraph lines to secure for themselves a fleetness of foot equal to the speed of the electric message.
The telegraph and the postal system have already, in combination with the development of the public press in China, done a great deal toward unifying the people and may
confidently be counted on for a much larger effect in the future and this combined with more adequate railway facilities will surely foster a greater feeling of nationhood and of closeness of relationship between the various provinces.
We have seen something of the various physical problems which China faces. It is significant that the greatest physical feat of the ancient Chinese, the Great Wall, which was executed to shut out foreign intruders, has been broken down in all essential respects, and China is today fairly ready for foreign assistance in solving her problems, if it be friendly and not predatory.
The solution of Chinese physical problems largely depends on education; the education of the people to furnish the background of general enlightenment and the education of the native leaders upon whom must rest the responsibility for carrying out in detail such plans as may be formed for the alleviation of the conditions I have referred to. In order to determine just what remedial methods should be followed, there should be first a thorough study of present conditions by the best consulting engineers and scientists who can be secured. There is at the present time, it seem to me, a most important function for foreign experts to fill in connection with the development of China, and their work is a necessary preliminary and hence it is all important that China seek and use the assistance of such men, although it is also true that her need for such assistance will be temporary, and the application of the remedies, which they in their wisdom suggest after a study of the field, will still depend upon native talent.
The new national flag of China embodies, I believe, some significant lessons in the present connection. The sewing together of five stripes of silk to form one flag is easy, but to make a united nation of five peoples so widely separated, linguistically and geographically, in a country so greatly accidented by mountains, and so harassed by flood and famine, and so lacking the ways of quick transport and general modern education which must precede the development of resources and of ways of communication, requiring native captains of industry and native leaders of all sorts-a very
much greater task. It is just here that one of the functions of our mission colleges in China comes in-to train these leaders in situ, without loss of connection with China; for they need to know China as well as Western science and institutions and methods. They need to be qualified and unselfish, then the five points of the compass assumed by the Chinese may be rightly adopted for the north, east, south and west will then all be centered around the common pole of service to China, and from the provinces to Peking and from Peking to the most distant provinces, the people will be united in an efficient, peaceful and helpful state, at least within the boundaries left them by their at present more powerful and predatory neighbors.