China By Demetrius Charles Boulger































































 -  This evidence of foreign sympathy in the cause of a common humanity
made more than a passing impression on the - Page 620
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This Evidence Of Foreign Sympathy In The Cause Of A Common Humanity Made More Than A Passing Impression On The Minds Of The Chinese People.

While the origin of the famine may be attributed to either drought or civil war, there is no doubt

That its extension and the apparent inability of the authorities to grapple with it may be traced to the want of means of communication, which rendered it almost impossible to convey the needful succor into the famine districts. The evil being so obvious, it was hoped that the Chinese would be disposed to take a step forward on their own initiative in the great and needed work of the introduction of railways and other mechanical appliances. The viceroy of the Two Kiang gave his assent to the construction of a short line between Shanghai and the port of Woosung. The great difficulty had always been to make a start; and now that a satisfactory commencement had been made the foreigners were disposed in their eagerness to overlook all obstacles, and to imagine the Flowery Land traversed in all directions by railways. But these expectations were soon shown to be premature. Half of the railway was open for use in the summer of 1876, and during some weeks the excitement among the Chinese themselves was as marked as among the Europeans. The hopes based upon this satisfactory event were destined to be soon dispelled by the animosity of the officials. They announced their intention to resort to every means in their power to prevent the completion of the undertaking.

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