Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/453

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


AREA AND POPULATION

113

For purposes of general administration, the island is divided into nine provinces, presided over by Government Agents, who, with their assistants and subordinate headmen, are the channel of communication between the Government and the natives. There are three municipalities and fourteen local boards mainly for sanitary purposes. Area and Population. The following table gives the area and population (including the military) of the provinces of Ceylon, according to the census of 1891 : —

1 Provinces Area: English sqr. miles Population, 1891 1 Area : Provinces English sqr. miles 1 Population, 1S91 Total Per sq. mile 533 206 95 228 37 Total 320,070 75,333 159,201 258,626 Persq. mile 107 19 50 136 Western Central Northern Southern Eastern 1,432 2,300 3,363 2,146 4,037 763,658 474,670 319,296 489,811 148,796 North- Western 2,997 North Central 4,002 Uva .... 3,155 Sabaragamuwa 1,901 Total . . 25,333 3,009,461 119

The total population (including military) enumerated at the census of 1891 as 3,009,461, was estimated by the Registrar-General at the middle of 1897 to be 3,391,443, of which the race distribution was as follows : —

— 1891 1897 Europeans ...... Burghers or European descendants Sinhalese ...... Tamils including South Indian Immi- grants ...... Malays ....... " Moors " (non-Malay Mohammedans) . Veddahs (aboriginal wild tribes) Others 6,348 21,231 2,041,158 723,853 10,133 197,166 1,229 8,343 6,545 23,663 2,174,200 960,745 10,980 205,588 860 8,862 3,009,461 3,391,443

The census returns showed 70 per cent, of the population to be engaged in agi-iculture, 16 per cent, to be industrial, 5 per cent, commercial. The Registrar-General gives for 1897 the number of births as 36-9 per 1,000, and of deaths as 23-2. The highest death-rate (1892) was in the North -Centi-al Province, being 56-3 per 1,000 per annum. The lowest death- rate was registered in the Western Province, viz. 19-2 per 1,000. The immigration returns, dealing almost entirely with agricultural labourers employed on the tea and coffee plantations, and not including the very large nurnber of traders and domestic servants, give, in 1897, 153,075 arrivals as against 109,213 departures. These are Tamil immigrants from South India and are the mainstay of the tea industry as they were of the coffee industry.