For example, this applies to such a phenomenon as charity. Today, in the new economic conditions, this phenomenon is experiencing its next heyday, but it is interesting to compare, but “how was it under the tsar”? Several years ago, my graduate student Alexander Chudaykin became interested in this topic, having prepared a thesis for the degree of candidate. historical sciences, in which he collected very interesting facts about charity in the Penza province in the late XIX - early XX century. So…
“The publication“ Review of the activities of the peasant class Orphan Society of the 1 of the Zemstvo district of Penza district, from the founding of the 30 Company April 1895 in April to 1 in January 1898, ”raised the painful issue of helping orphans. The author of the material, an unnamed Zemsky head of the Penza district, describes the catastrophic situation of children of orphans of the peasant class. “Orphanhood in all classes is a terrible calamity and grief, but no where it is not as hard as in peasant life, however, the orphan peasant will not die of starvation; but only because there is no one to take care of his health, no one to think about his upbringing, and only with rare exceptions among them do not go out people who are exterminated, embittered and sometimes vicious, ending orphaned boys, and girls are even worse ”. The author complains that Zemstvo chiefs pay little attention to solve this problem: “It’s not a word that Zemstvo’s leaders should and can be said to be the highest guardians of orphans, but is it conceivable to the Zemstvo chief to follow the life and development of orphans scattered throughout the site why his worries are reduced only to the preservation of material crumbs belonging to unhappy children ... Serving over 20 for years in peasant and rural institutions, all of the above was observed with great sadness . This fact influenced the fact that the Society for the Care of Orphans was created. As the author writes: “But God is not without mercy, but the light is not without good people, and to gather a modest charitable society, which, according to the charter approved in December 1894 by the Ministry of the Interior, 30 on April 1895 opened its actions, and now after more than three years at the expense of the Society, about 20 orphans are raised and nurtured, and during all this time not only there was no shortage of anything, but there is now a small saving . The author cites other examples of the achievements of the Society. “For clarity of the Company's actions, I consider it a duty to provide the following information, drawn by me from reports approved by the general meeting of members ... Full members annually making at least 3 p., 100 people of different classes of both sexes, including 12 peasant rural societies” [4 ]. Thus, the author of the article defends the principle of social justice, and not only sums up the activities of the Society for the Care of Round Orphans, but also criticizes those who are responsible for helping orphans for their passivity in this matter.
The article “On the charitable activities of Prince Obolensky on beautification of Nikolskaya Petrovka” is devoted to the special case of charity known in the period under study. This article describes the activities of Prince A.D. Obolensky in the field of charity in the village. Nikolskaya Petrovka Gorodishchensky district. Here is what the author says about this fact. “Nikolskaya Petrovka, Gorodishchensky district. This village has long been famous in the province and outside its crystal factory, now owned by Prince A.D. Obolensky. Prince and Princess A.A. Obolenskaya made it a significant cultural center of the Gorodishchensky district; they spend significant funds on setting up educational and charitable institutions for workers and local peasants in Petrovka: their cares are arranged and they are used to keep a hospital, a pharmacy, one of the most populous in the province of primary schools (more than 200 students with 4 teachers), a needlework school for girls, folk library and folk readings with light paintings. This year, a new building was built for the school: according to the beauty of architecture, vastness, convenience of location of all the rooms, its position on the bank of a beautiful pond is the best school building in the province and could serve as an ornament not only for the county, but also for the provincial city together with the outhouse for teachers' apartments extends up to 20 thousand rubles . 2 September took place lighting the building. It is absolutely clear that information about such a school has gone beyond the limits of Gorodishchensky district. The talk of the peasants about the extraordinary school house in Petrovka has already spread far into the villages - we had to hear it not only in many villages of the Gorodishchensky district, but also in the Mokshansky and Saransk counties . The author informs us about the further development of the school. “In view of the fact that the population of Petrovka is not content with the course of the elementary school, the prince and princess Obolensky intend to transform their school from the beginning of the next school year into a two-class department of the Ministry of Public Education” .
This material is the author's article A.F. Selivanova "Charity in the Penza province in 1896 g." The author points out that “The Department of Institutions of the Empress Maria collected information about the charitable institutions of Russia for the Nizhny Novgorod exhibition, and recently published them. From a charitable collection, we extract some information about the Penza province. It included 29 charities and institutions, and was favored by 1146 people. In addition, in a night shelter in Penza, overnight stays of about 45 were used by thousands of people. Of the people being regarded by 1146, there were adult 764 people and 382 children. The charity societies were 3, and they were mainly engaged in issuing benefits to those in need. In addition, these societies contain at their own expense: the almshouse 1, the 1 vocational school and the 1 orphanage. The funds of these societies consist of capital 23 350 p., Private contributions - 1050 p., Miscellaneous income and donations 6300 p. and manuals 675 p. ”. The article also describes the growth dynamics of charities. “The earliest founding of charitable institutions of the province belongs to 1845, and most of all they were founded in the nineties. From all of this brief review, it is clear that the number of charities is not enough. In the past three years (1897-1899) we see that the number of charities in the province is increasing, and they are expanding. 20 and 11 charitable societies of them were opened at educational institutions ... Every year at least 200 thousand rubles are spent on charity in the Penza province. It is impossible not to wish that city precinct guardianships would open in Penza and other cities, as in Moscow, Kharkov, etc. ”.
In 1904, two notes were posted “About donations for military needs, in connection with the beginning of the Russian-Japanese war”, where it was reported that “only a rumor about the start of hostilities in the Far East reached villages and villages, rural societies of the four volosts of Gorodishchensky Voronovskaya, Shugurovskaya, Borytyanevskaya and N. Bornukovskaya counties immediately began collecting gatherings to discuss the funds that they could donate to the needs of the war ... Since over the last three years, almost all rural societies in the second sector have saved their income oval reserve capital, totaling ... extends to 10000 p., donations to the needs of the war, without causing any taxation, did not present difficulties, and expressed themselves in the total amount of 4500 p., in addition, the peasant women of these volosts, wanting to make and 35000 arshin canvas, towels, felt boots, underwear, etc. collected their contribution to the aid of the valiant army. With donations from the Zemstans, the head of the Province, together with the petition of the peasant societies, threw their loyal feelings and readiness to stand up for Tsar-Batyushka and Holy Russia  to the feet of his imperial majesty. In another note, it was reported “Pupils of the Penza 1-th male gymnasium donated to the cash desk of the management of the Russian Red Cross 100 p. to help the wounded and sick soldiers in the Far East, and, moreover, the gymnasium employees agreed on a monthly basis to deduct 1% from the salary to the same Society and to the same needs until the end of the war, and in February 1904 was transferred to Mr. Treasurer Red Cross Society 20 and 21 February, under the receipt for the number 20 and 21 ". Vedomosti also reported that “the ranks of the Penza-Simbirsk administration of Zemsky and state property, as well as the local ranks of the Penza and Simbirsk provinces decided to deduct 2% of the salary received for this war .
The remaining publications of the PGN 1906 were civil in nature, which in no way affects their relevance. In this regard, of great interest is the article "On assistance to the starving in Mokshan". The material tells about the activities of the Mokshansky district committee of the All-German organization for the aid of starving people. This is what is reported: “The county committee of the all-German organization provides assistance to the starving population of the county at 65 points, with the exception of canteens, opened by Mrs. Andreeva, about which there is no information to the committee. Assistance is provided to 4250 persons and mainly children, old people and patients of all ages. In some places, canteens are arranged where they get: soup with butter or corned beef, millet porridge with butter and 1 a pound of bread per eater, in other places, baked bread is distributed from 1,5 to 2 pounds per person per day, and in the third, flour is delivered for 30 pounds for adults and 20 pounds for children for a month ... ”. The provincial charitable committee provided great assistance in this matter. “Since January, the provincial charitable committee has been released on 8000 p. Issued to 6745 p. 23 K. and consists on the face of 1254 p. 77 Q. ”. However, the author of the article warns that despite such significant help, hunger can happen again and on a much larger scale. “Due to large stocks of bread in public stores, generous loans from the treasury and timely assistance of the Zemstvo organization, last year’s crop of bread was not particularly sensitive for the population ... but it’s scary to think what will happen this year. From Easter to the present, there was not a single rain. The scorching sun burned all the grass; the rye has become bent and begins to bloom, and yet it has grown 10 vertices from the ground, and the spring ones, in most cases, have not ascended, and where they have ascended, they are not encouraging. If it does not rain on these days, then we can say with certainty that there will be a terrible famine, both for people and for livestock ”. In this regard, it should be emphasized that the threat of famine in the Penza province remained almost constant.
The publication also published materials informing about quite original facts of charitable activities. For example, the article “Happy Brides” tells about a case when a certain amount was donated to an unknown benefactor for marriage to several girls. Vedomosti reported on this issue: “On June 24 at 11 hours of the day, in the hall of the City Duma, with the Cathedral, a funeral service was performed for an unknown benefactor Ivanov, who donated 20 thousand rubles, to give benefit to poor brides from residents of Penza on leaving the marriage. After this was given the lot for the right to receive benefits 45 girls. According to the draw, this right was obtained: the daughter of the workshop Evdokia Vasilyevna Alekhina 16 years old, the daughter of a peasant Ekaterina Vasilyevna Sirotkina 18 years, the daughter of tradesman Matryona Grigorievna Okorokova 18 years and daughter tradesman Elena Vasilyevna Razekhova 23 years. Truly, an amazing case, when charitable assistance was provided to girls who do not have the means to collect dowry.
The theme of the spread of begging, constantly rising on the pages of the publication, was covered in the article "Penza poor". Regarding the rampant spread of this social phenomenon in the provincial center, the author writes: “In your newspaper, it has been repeatedly said that Penza in recent years has been attacked and besieged by beggars and all beggars who poison the citizens. Not only on Moskovskaya Street, but also on Lermontovsky Square, even on other streets you are constantly stopped, then drunk some, then “retired clerk”, then “administratively expelled” or “escaped from exile”, then simply hooligan-rasshibaylo , around which you will even be afraid to take out your wallet during the day, then the teacher “burned out from Syzran, and now that year has not been able to reach any city, although he lacks a few kopecks.” And here is a well-dressed gentleman, he has, you see, he has bread for bread, but heels are not enough for tea. There are holy fools: either with their crooks, or with their heads tied, or even on their stomachs, crawling along the sidewalks of Moscow Street. Here, with an ax and a saw, an unemployed worker - he needs to “bread and stay” . The author believes that the internal affairs bodies can only partly affect the rectification of the situation. “We are ready to ask, what can the police do with this evil?” Yes, almost nothing. Is that stop too annoying beggar. In fact, imagine that the police will enter into all their rights and one day will detain all beggars at once. That's fine, the philistine will think. But let me, and then what? Police detain, say, a 100 man. In the area they are dismantled. It turns out, for example, that 50 of them are nonresident, and the rest of 50 are Penza commoners. The police will send non-resident groups by stage, at their place of residence, and the local authorities will be sent to the petty-bourgeois government for further orders. By law, the philistine government must watch over the poor and weak members . According to the author, such rampant poverty is related to the fact that “... in our city there is no authority that would specifically manage the cause of fighting begging and would unite in this respect the activities of public and charitable institutions. Meanwhile, the creation of such a body is very necessary ”. The article also criticizes the activities of charitable institutions “... many private charitable societies operate in Penza. Only we do not have such a beautiful in the idea of an institution, as a house of diligence. But the activities of all these societies and institutions are not distinguished by mutual consistency and integrity. Meanwhile, the unification of the activities of all these public and charitable institutions is absolutely necessary. Only by being brought into the system and directed to one common channel, their activity will bear fruit, and will reach its goal ”.
In the article, the author refers to the experience of other cities in the fight against begging. “To combat begging in St. Petersburg and Moscow, there are special committees for the analysis of beggars. The structure of these committees includes representatives of city, district and class institutions, as well as representatives of charitable societies. Police detain all beggars on the street and send them to a committee to review the beggars. There they are really disassembled: those who really cannot work and have nothing, go to the poorhouse or receive monthly allowances, and the parasites are brought to justice, and those who come will certainly be sent to the capital with the prohibition of returning to the capital . The article proposes a number of repressive measures to combat begging. “Of course, there can be no radical struggle with begging until decisive legislative measures are taken in this regard. Most beggars are healthy and able-bodied people who simply do not want to do anything. They chose poverty as their profession not because of need, but as a result of laziness and moral promiscuity ... To fight such beggars, of course, we need not charity, but repression, for which appropriate laws are necessary. It is necessary to subject all able-bodied parasites to imprisonment and forced labor in special workhouses ”. It is received in the article and the society as a whole for being too soft to such a phenomenon as begging. “A big fault in the development of poverty falls on our society, the sober and healthy views still penetrated very weakly into the mass. Instead of them, liberal manilovshchina and the tendencies of false philanthropy, which in reality is cowardice and great evil, reign everywhere . The article is summarized by the following sentence: “Establishing a committee in Penza to review the beggars would improve the situation in this respect, since then the population would know that the committee examines the situation of all the beggars, and those who really need and cannot work get necessary help. And if the population knew, it would be less patronized by vagrancy and would less encourage it, treating it with greater intelligibility than nowadays to the beggars stuck on the street. ”
P.S. Thus, it is obvious that many of the tasks of the past were solved in the same way as today, that is, they are shifted onto the shoulders of the public ... And many of the phenomena in society have not survived for more than 100 years!
1. Penza provincial news. "Overview of the Society for the Charity of the Orphans of the Peasant Class 1 of the Zemstvo District of Penza County, from the founding of the Company from April 30 1895 to January 1 1898." No. 60. 1898. C.3.
5. PGV "On the charitable activities of Prince Obolensky on the improvement of Nikolskaya Petrovka". No. 224. 1898. C.3.
8. Selivanov A.F. "Charity in the Penza province in 1896." PGV No. 218. 1899. C.3.
10. PGV "Donations for military needs, in connection with the beginning of the Russian-Japanese war." No. 54. 1904. C.3.
11. PGV "Donations for military needs, in connection with the beginning of the Russian-Japanese war." No. 54.1904. C.4.
13. PGV "On assistance to the starving in Mokshan". No. 110. 1906. C.2.
16. PGV "Happy Brides". No. 136. 1908. C.3.
17. PGV "Penza poor". No. 145. 1908. C.2.