"There are now over 100,000 Jews in the Holy Land. The Jewish population there is larger than it has been at any time since the end of the first century of the Christian era. Nearly four-fifths of them have gone thither from other countries within the last few years, and they have been going thither this year more steadily than ever before. In former times only a small number of Jews were permitted to live in the country, but the restrictions upon their settlement in it and upon their ownership of land have been removed, and they are now at liberty to re-people it and take possession of it. The number of Jews who have returned to Palestine during the dozen years in which they have been free to enter has been greater than the number who returned after the Babylonian captivity, twenty-four centuries ago.
"In the city of Jerusalem itself, according to a report of the British Consul there, the Jewish population is now fully 40,000, and a large part of the real estate in and around the city is in Jewish hands. The number of synagogues, schools of learning, hospitals, and other public institutions is constantly increasing, the water system has been improved, new streets have been opened beyond the walls, telegraphs and electric lights have been introduced, several factories have been set up, and the new railway to Jaffa has already stimulated the activity of the population in various ways. 'Palestine will soon be ready for the Jewish race,' says Rev. Dr. Kelt, of the Episcopal Church of Jerusalem, in a letter to the London Times.
"The reports from the northern part of Palestine are favorable. There is activity at Acre and along the route to Damascus. The wheat raisers there are rejoicing in the prospect of finding markets for their crops; so are the raisers of olives and other fruits. The soil in that region is well adapted to the growth of cotton.
"A number of important public works have been undertaken in various parts of the country between the river Jordan and the Mediterranean; and we hear of yet other projects in which the Hebrew capitalists of England and France are prepared to invest all the money that may be needed.
"It will undoubtedly take a long time to regenerate Palestine, but we infer from the news received from Jerusalem that the work of regeneration has been begun. It must take a good many years to give the predominance to the Jewish element in Palestine; but if the number of Jews there should increase for the next ten years at the rate at which it has increased during the last ten years, the Jewish population in the Holy Land will run over a million very soon after the opening of the twentieth century.