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often been usurped. The usual objection to | is no theory of government or constitutional the initiative and referendum is that crude, | principle which will allow the people or their ill digested, and conflicting measures may agents to exercise enlightened discretion for thus be adopted; to which the obvious the public welfare, but will forbid them to answer is that genuine popular govern- work public ill. Popular government is nothment includes the legal right to legislate ing occult, it is in the last resort only the crudely and ill advisedly. recognition of the principle that the body of people in a state acting through a majority of those physically and morally qualified, and having therefore an actual predominance of will, knows better what it wants and is more likely to secure it than any small body of persons who may be selected for them by any process known to man.
Constitutional Limitations on Popular Government. How far do the limitations of modern constitutions in general interfere with popular governments? So far as they require elections at stated periods for named officials with a fixed term of tenure, the popular will is restrained from making changes during the time | limit of such regulations; though in the latter days a system of recall (see) has been instituted in some states, whereby the terms may be cut short. The recall, however, is only an extension of the system of short terms and rotation in office which was long obtained in the United States. The people bind themselves also by their constitutions to acknowledge authority exercised by various officials and parts of the government upon the relations of human life. Thus the governor vetoes and pardons; the courts hear and decide causes and pass on the validity and meaning of legislation; the legislatures lay taxes, but not on certain kinds of property nor above a certain proportion to the assessed valuation. The people are bound by these gifts and withdrawals of power, so long as the constitution lasts; and inasmuch as the Federal Constitution is very difficult of amendment, popular government seems to be specially restricted by its provisions.
In the states the people have what has become the swift and easy remedy of changing a constitution; and the present tendency is to decrease the powers of the legislature while increasing to the people the opportunities of reviewing the action of the government through the agency of the initiative, the referendum and the recall.
See BALLOT; BUREAUCRACY;
References: J. Bryce, Am. Commonwealth (4th ed., 1910), II, chs. lxxvi-lxxxvii; W. E. H. Lecky, Democracy and Liberty (1896); Sir H. S. Maine, Popular Government (1886); M. Ostrogorski, Democracy and the Organization of Pol. Parties (1902); Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America (Reeve's trans., 1835; Bowen's trans., 1863); C. W. Eliot, Am. Contributions to Civilization (1897); J. S. Mill, Essay on Liberty (3d ed., 1864); Edmond Kelly, Government or Human Evolution (1900); Elisha Mulford, The Nation (1871); C. E. Merriam, Hist. of Am. Pol. Theories (1903); A. B. Hart, National Ideals Historically Traced (1907); Hugo Münsterberg, The
ALBERT BUSHNELL HART.
POPULAR SOVEREIGNTY. During the period from 1789 to 1861, two distinct policies prevailed with respect to the government of the territories belonging to the United States. Until the Mexican War, Congress acted upon the theory that it possessed full constitutional power to govern them. The status of all the territory of the United States with respect to slavery had been fixed prior to the Mexican War.
Success of Popular Government. In the long | Americans (1904). run popular government tends to recover its own balance. The things that are done in a decade in any state are in general the things desired by the majority of the voters who put their minds on public affairs. One proof of this success is the large number of voters, especially among the richest and most highly educated part of the community, who do not vote or much exert themselves in government, the reason being that on the whole they think their interests sufficiently conserved by the government of the people who do vote. In the In anticipation of the acquisition of long run, what agency, individuals or combina- territory by that war, the issue was raised tion of individuals within the United States whether slavery should exist therein. This could furnish a better government than the issue Lewis Cass (see) sought to solve by people themselves? The essence of free gov- evolving the theory afterward designated as ernment, like the theory of salvation, is free the doctrine of popular sovereignty. He arwill; but free will is not shut in to the gued that the Constitution nowhere clearly right to choose righteously, it includes the grants Congress general legislative authority right to choose evil if one so prefers. There over the territories. Its control should there
POPULAR VOTE FOR PRESIDENT-POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES
fore be limited to the necessary minimum of organizing territorial governments, leaving to the inhabitants the regulation of their domes tic affairs.
sas was the logical result. The career of the doctrine of popular sovereignty was terminated by the decision in the Dred Scott case (see) which upheld the right of slavery to enter all the territories.
See CASS, LEWIS; COMPROMISE OF 1820; COMPROMISE OF 1850; DRED SCOTT CASE; KANSAS-NEBRASKA BILL; KANSAS STRUGGLE; SLAVERY CONTROVERSY.
References: J. F. Rhodes, Hist. of U. S. from the Compromise of 1850 (1893), I, II; A. C. McLaughlin, Lewis Cass (1891); G. P. Garrison, Westward Extension (1906); T. C. Smith, Parties and Slavery (1906); J. B. McMaster, Hist. of the People of the U. S., VII (1910), VIII (1913); A. Johnson, Stephen A. MILO M. QUAIFE.
This doctrine constituted Cass's chief political asset in the election of 1848. It was again advocated in the compromise debates of 1850, but failed of acceptance, since Congress avoided all reference to slavery in the Utah and New Mexico territorial acts. Notwithstanding this, in 1854 Douglas made the assertion that in 1850 Congress had consciously substituted the principle of popular sovereignty for the old policy of congressional control of the territories, the pretext for repealing the Missouri Compromise (see COMPROMISE OF 1820) restriction. By the Nebraska bill, Con- | Douglas (1908). gress formally committed itself to the new territorial policy. The bill, however, contained two vital defects. It ignored the deep interest of the nation in the result of the contest over Kansas; and it was equivocal in not stating clearly when the privilege of local determina- QUESTIONS. tion should become operative. Bleeding Kan-ISLATIVE QUESTIONS.
POPULAR VOTE FOR PRESIDENT. See VOTE, POPULAR.
POPULAR VOTES ON LEGISLATIVE
POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES
Rapid Growth.-The increase of the popula- It is true that the rate of increase is detion of the United States is a phenomenon | creasing a fact which makes calculations as such as has never before been recorded in any to future increase purely speculative; but that country. As recorded by the decennial censuses, this population has doubled three times since 1790, when the first census was taken; in 1820, again in 1850, and again in 1880, each period being 30 years. At the present rate of growth, the population will double for the fourth time at the census of 1920. The actual rate of growth has been much more rapid than this, however, as is shown by estimating the population for each year, on the assumption that the yearly increase is equal to one-tenth of the increase in ten years shown by the decennial census. On that basis the population of the United States has already doubled four times, will probably double for the fifth time about 1934, and for the sixth time about 1987, as may be indicated by the following table:
The periods within which the population has doubled, by this method of calculation, and is likely to continue to double, are as follows: 1st, 23 years; 2d, 25 years; 3d, 24 years; 4th, 30 years; 5th, 42 years; 6th, 53 years.
the population of continental United States will approximate 300,000,000 by the end of the twentieth century seems probable. So that the pressure of population upon the means of subsistence is destined in time to create a problem similar to that which already exists in England, India, and some other countries. This question of overpopulation has not as yet become important. The population per square mile of the continental area of the United States in 1910 was 30.09. The most densely populated state was Rhode Island, with 508 per square mile, while in the entire mountain division, no state exceeded a population of 7.7 per square mile. The density of population in the United States, as above stated, may be compared with that of England, 559 per square mile, Belgium, 563.7, British India, 223.8, and China, 225.6.
Before 1790.-There was no complete enumeration of the population of what is now the United States prior to the first federal census of 1790. A number of enumerations were made of different colonies at the instance of the British board of trade, all of them fragmentary and imperfect. A full account of them and their results appears in A Century of Population Growth by William S. Rossiter, published by the Census Office in 1909. Estimates of the population of the colonies have been made by Prof. F. B. Dexter, George Bancroft, the historian, and J. B. D. De Bow,
POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES
superintendent of the seventh census (1850) | Louisiana purchase, the annexation of Texas,
Comparative Population and Rate of Growth.
This table includes only the population of what is known as continental United States,-Nevertheless it remains a greater rate of exclusive of all outlying possessions, such as Alaska, Hawaii, etc. In 1910, the total population under the Federal Government was about 101,100,000, including 64,356 in Alaska; 191,909 in Hawaii; 1,118,012 in Porto Rico; 55,608 in military and naval service abroad; 7,635,426 in the Philippine Islands (as returned by the census taken by the War Department in 1903); and estimates of the population of the islands of Guam and Samoa, and of the Panama Canal Zone.
Diminishing Rate.-The rate of increase in population by decades must be measured by the increase in land area occurring at intervals, the most important of which were the
increase than that of any other country of like civilization, with the single exception of Argentina. The present rate of increase is probably double the average rate of increase in Europe, and exceeds by one-sixth that of Mexico and by one-tenth that of Australia. It has been, prior to 1910, nearly double that of Canada. The only three nations having a larger population than that of the United States are the Chinese Empire, the British Empire, and the Russian Empire. The following table indicates the population and percentage of population increase of the principal foreign countries, as compared with that of the United States:
TABLE III.-INTERNATIONAL COMPARISON
Per cent of
POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES Hübner's Geographisch-Statistiche Tabellen | Nebraska shows the smallest rate of increase, for 1901 contains an interesting diagram rep-0.3 per cent, Kansas follows with 3.0 per cent, resenting graphically the population increase and the three New England states of Vermont, of the United States and of the leading Euro- Maine and New Hampshire follow. The greatpean countries in the nineteenth century; it in- est increase, 120.4 per cent, was in Washing. dicates that at the beginning of the century, ton, followed by Oklahoma, 109.7 per cent, and Great Britain, Russia, France, Germany, Aus- Idaho, 101.3 per cent. The states which show tria, Spain, and Turkey had larger populations an increase exceeding 30 per cent, with the than the United States; while at the close of exception of Florida and New Jersey, are all the century this country had outstripped all located in the west, and make up a solid belt but Russia, and was increasing at a more rapid including one-third of the area of the United rate than the latter.
States. The rate of increase, 1900–1910, was
Geographical Divisions. In addition to the greater than during the previous decade in division by states, the United States census twenty-six of the forty-eight states, fifteen of now divides the population by nine geographi-them being west of the Mississippi River. It cal divisions. The table on the following pages was less than during the previous decade in indicates the population of each division and twenty-three states, sixteen of which are east state at the last three censuses, the increase of the Mississippi. from 1890 to 1910, with per cent of increase, The rates of increase in the northern and the rank of each in population, 1900–1910, and southern states during the past thirty years the population of each state per square mile were practically the same-in marked contrast at the last two censuses.
with the record of previous censuses. But the This table is an instructive exhibit of the character of the growth differs widely in the incidence of the population changes now in two sections, there being a relatively uniform progress. The middle Atlantic, the west south growth in the South, equalizing a balance in central, the mountain, and the Pacific, are the North between a lower rate of rural the only four of the nine geographical divi- growth and a higher rate of urban growth. sions which show an increase in 1910 equal to The fact that the rate of increase for the or in excess of the average rate of population country as a whole was greater from 1900 to increase in continental United States. The 1910 than during the previous decade was due east north central and the west north central, wholly to the increase in immigration, as will comprising the prairie states, where the growth appear when the full reports of the thirteenth was most rapid thirty years ago, show an census are available. It was further due to increase of but 14.2 and 12.5 respectively, and the increased rate of growth in the middle one state, Iowa, shows a decrease of 0.3 per Atlantic, mountain, and Pacific divisions, the cent—the only state in the Union where this increase in the remaining six divisions being occurred. It is largely explained by the emi- less than at the prior census. Thus immigragration of agricultural population to the new tion into the country, and migration within farming districts of the Canadian Northwest. the country, are the two significant factors.
TABLE IV.-POPULATION OF CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, BY STATES AND GEOGRAPHICAL DIVISIONS, 1890-1910, WITH NUMBER AND PER
CENT OF INCREASE, 1890-1900 AND 1900-1910, AND RANKING OF THE STATES IN 1910 AND 1900
POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES
Continental United States
New England Division
Middle Atlantic Division
East North Central Division
West North Central Division
11,637,921 10,347,423 8,932,112
South Atlantic Division
District of Columbia