ALLAN MACDONALD, Factor for The Mackintosh, Inverness (39)—examined.
43517. The Chairman.
—Have you got a statement to read?
—I have two statements. The first is a short one connected with the statement by Sir George Grant, and the other is a longer one connected with the subject of club farms.
Forests on The Mackintosh Estates.
—1. South Kinrara, Inchreoch.
—This forest extends to about 3500 acres, about 2300 acres of which are under wood, planted and natural grown. The soil is admirably adapted for planting, and in the year 1869 about 800 acres of hill pasture were enclosed and to a great extent planted. Ample compensation was made to the tenants of the farms from which this land was detached, the rents being indeed reduced by about one half, that is from £150 to about £75. No person was removed. Formerly the shooting rental was £100, but afterwards as a grouse moor fetched £200. In consequence of planting and enclosing, deer began to come in from the neighbouring forests of Rothiemurchus, and it now brings in a yearly rent of £500, and a considerably larger rent has been afforded for it. Although the ground has thus become a forest, it was with no intention of foresting it that the hill land was first enclosed and planted.
—This forest, extending to about 6000 acres, is, I have been told, mentioned in old charters and Acts of Parliament as one of the ancient forests of Scotland. It is surrounded by other forest lands of much greater extent belonging to Sir George Macpherson Grant, Bart. It never was a place of cultivation in any proper sense, being described in the titles as the " Summer Shealing of Dalnavert." About 700 acres is under a crop of natural-grown timber, and the whole property is better fitted for a forest than for any other way of occupation. Isolated as it is from other parts of The Mackintosh estates, and surrounded by forest lands, it would be difficult to treat it in any other way, probably impossible to obtain the same return from it. Formerly the rent was small; it is now £800, and the rates are correspondingly relieved.' It was first my intention not to make any statement except that which I have just read, and to present myself for examination on any further points upon which the Commission might desire information; but yesterday it was suggested to me that as a good deal has been said about club farms, I should prepare a statement, and accordingly I have done so regarding club farms on The Mackintosh estates in Brae Lochaber :
—' The Mackintosh estates, extending to about 121,000 acres, lie in seven different parishes in the county of Inverness. They are tenanted by about 170 individuals, including joint tenants and crofters, of whom only two pay above £100 sterling of rent, and only ten upwards of £100 sterling rent. The majority of the farms—exclusive of the club farms to be immediately referred to—yield rents of from £ 10 to £80, occupied for the most part by an industrious and thriving tenantry. In Brae Lochaber, in the parish of Kilmonivaig, The Mackintosh estates extend to 32,000 acres, with a population according to the last census of 191 souls. In addition to other holdings, there are here three club farms, the nature and management of which I propose briefly to describe. Two of these—Bohuntin and Gaelmore—resemble each other, in having large common sheep stocks. The third farm—Inveroy—has no sheep stock.
1st, The farm of Bohuntin extends to upwards of 6000 acres, of which less than 100 acres are arable. It is at present occupied by twenty-four tenants or crofters, who have each about four acres of arable land, and as a rule about three cattle above one year of age and two under. These are the separate property of the individual crofters, and every two crofters have a horse between them. The farm also carries about 3000 sheep as a common stock, in which all the crofters have an interest. It may be mentioned that the arable land on this farm is still to a great extent worked on the runrig system—a very bad system, but which it has not yet been found possible to get rid of altogether. The number of crofters on the farm is, as already stated, twenty-four, and the number of persons habitually residing on the farm sixty-eight. The average rent of each share of the farm is about £19 sterling.
2nd, Gaelmore contains about 7500 acres, of which 100 are arable. It is tenanted by eighteen crofters, who, as in the case of Bohuntin, have separate arable land and cattle, and a common stock numbering at present about 2000. Of the eighteen tenants fourteen have, nominally, full shares in the farm and four half shares. With the exception of two, all the crofters have a horse of their own, and the cattle estimated to be kept, and in most cases actually kept, is five above one year of age and two under. The extent of arable land held by a crofter with a full share is about seven acres, which in this case forms a separate and distinct holding. The number of persons habitually residing on this farm is 87. The average rent of each share of the farm is £21, 17s. 6d.
3rd, Inveroy.—Until about twelve years ago, a number of crofters in Lochaber were sub-tenants of the tacksman of the farm of Keppoch. About the time mentioned, their crofts were detached from Keppoch, and formed into the club farm of Inveroy, holding directly under the proprietor. It extends altogether to about 1200 acres, of which considerably upwards of 200 are arable. The crofters number thirty-one, and the crofts vary in extent from one and a half to fourteen acres of arable land. These crofts are distinctly defined, and each has a dwelling house and usually a barn and byre upon it. The majority of the crofters have a horse and two cows, although some of the smaller ones have no horse and only one cow. There is no sheep stock upon this farm, but after the crops have been gathered sheep are taken in to winter. Last year about 800 sheep were wintered in this way. The number of persons habitually residing on this farm is 125. The rents run from £1 to £30. With reference to the management of these farms, I may mention that the crofters elect certain managers from their own number who transact with the proprietor, and are responsible to him for the rent. The proprietor himself does not interfere with the internal arrangements of the farm beyond seeing that the stipulations of the respective leases, which are few and simple, are observed. As might be expected, the managers do not always give satisfaction to the other tenants, nor even upon all occasions to each other. In the event of a croft becoming vacant in Inveroy, where there is no common stock, it falls to be filled up again by the proprietor, and where at all practicable it is usually added to an adjoining croft or divided between two adjoining crofts. In rare cases, an outsider has been taken in, but the other tenants as a rule do not like this, even although they themselves are not able to take up the vacant croft. In Bohuntin and Gaelmore, on the other hand, any vacant share is divided among the remaining tenants who object to the admission of a stranger, or even of its being given to any one of themselves willing and able to take it. To depart from this rule would create general discontent among the partners in each farm. Yet they themselves at times blame it for the difficulties into which some of them have fallen, and to which I shall have further on to refer. I am strongly in favour of the principle of adding crofts together as they fall vacant up to a certain limit; but what I have stated shows that this in club farms is attended with certain difficulties which do not apply when the holdings are separate and independent. The mode of succeediug to a croft on the death of the tenant is somewhat irregular and uncertain. The members of the family have as a rule to go out into the world to support themselves, while one probably remains at home to assist the parents in looking after the croft. Not unusually this one continues to carry on the croft after the parents have died irrespective of age or sex, and without making any arrangement with the other numbers of the family. Occasionally in this way the occupant of the croft is really only a remote connection by marriage of the real heir, and family claims and disagreements are in consequence not unknown. In addition to working their crofts, some of the tenants add to their incomes by engaging in other occupations, such as carting, labouring on the estate or elsewhere, and shepherding, while others of them go out in the season as gillies, water-bailiffs, &c, while others go still further from home in search of occupation. The rents which are collected from the crofters by the managers —who, as I have already stated, are responsible to the proprietor —are as a rule paid with regularity; and although occasionally the whole sum may not be collected by the managers by the rent day, it is not allowed to remain long outstanding, and at present I am glad to say there are no arrears. I fear, however, this cannot be taken as a sign that the crofters are possessed of much wealth : on the contrary, and according to their own statements, many of them are very poor indeed, and these statements are confirmed by the fact that the proprietor has recently had to come to their assistance with a very large sum of money, under the following circumstances. Some of the tenants of Bohuntin and Gaelmore began to incur accounts to a merchant in Fort William a good many years ago, and paid them by bill instead of cash. When the bill fell due it was renewed interest, and the price of additional purchases being added to the renewal. Credit was in this way given as long as the merchant believed the value of the debtors' interest in the common sheep stock was sufficient to cover the debt. In this way some accounts were allowed to run up to nearly £200. Last year, however, the creditor began to press for payment of his debts, and finding the crofters unable to pay, raised actions and obtained decrees against about a dozen, and took out " cessio " against four or five. Whatever the immediate effect of these proceedings might have been, the ultimate result could only be that the debtors' share in the sheep stock must be realised, and that the crofters themselves would have to leave their holdings, and probably the country altogether. Under these circumstances, the proprietor came forward and offered to advance a sum sufficient to pay the debts referred to, on condition of the whole sheep stock on the farms being mortgaged to him in security for the sum advanced. It was considered necessary that the whole stock should be so mortgaged, so as to give the proprietor the entire control of it; but he undertook to keep the solvent tenants free from any loss, in consequence of having become parties to the transaction. Notwithstanding this, considerable difficulty was experienced in obtaining the consent of the solvent tenants to the arrangement. This was, however, ultimately managed, and the debts were paid. From my experience of this matter, I do not believe such an arrangement could have been carried out with any one but a proprietor, or that the solvent tenants would have agreed to concur in the mortgage to any other person than him. I mention these facts, partly because I have seen something said lately about a system of mortgaging sheep stock, and to show that in the case of club farms, at any rate, such a system would be accompanied by more difficulties than some people seem to have contemplated. It is worth while drawing attention to the fact that it was crofters with a sheep stock at their back who almost ruined themselves by obtaining credit and running up accounts; while the tenants of Inveroy who have no sheep stock, and thus no security to offer, got no credit and kept out of debt. Some of the buildings on these crofts are still of an inferior character, but these are being rapidly replaced by better ones. Since the accession of the late Mackintosh in 1868, who succeeded after a long minority, during which few improvements could take place, a great number of stone and lime houses, many of them slated, have been erected, and at this moment seven or nine additional ones are in course of erection. The principle on which these buildings are erected is that of helping those who are willing to help themselves. Thus, wood and lime are given free, and occasionally a sum of money in addition, provided the tenant does the carriages and workmanship. Slates are also given where desired, upon payment of interest on their value. Tenants are not always very ready even upon these terms to erect new houses, but latterly they are, I think, beginning to see more clearly the reasonableness of meeting the proprietor halfway, and doing something for themselves. Subletting is strictly prohibited, and all crofters are required to live on their crofts. Large sums are spent yearly on improvements on the property, —fencing, planting, draining, etc, and the tenants themselves are employed as much as possible in carrying out these improvements. I observe that for the five years, from 1809 to 1874, there was an average expenditure of £1500 a year on the Lochaber property, and the expenditure for the last fifteen years is about £12,000, or an average of about £800 a-year. If in the course of this statement I have alluded to what seemed to me to be disadvantages in the club farm system, my object has been, by stating facts to show that there are two sides to the question, and that although no doubt club farms may be useful in some localities, and under certain conditions, they are yet attended by drawbacks, which render them unsuited to other conditions and many parts of the country. I should be sorry to leave this subject without bearing my cordial testimony to the many good qualities of the Lochaber tenantry as individuals. In disposition, as in physique, they are second to none I know.
43548. Mr Fraser-Mackintosh.
—The population of The Mackintosh estate in Lochaber is abnormally large?
—It is, compared with the acreage.
43549. They are nearly all old Catholics, are they not?
—I think there only two Protestants upon the estate, apart from some of the officials.
43550. Is it not exceptional in the whole county that there is a company of volunteers raised and officered from one estate?
—I have never heard of another case.
43551. And they are a fine, strong body of men?
43552. And altogether a credit to their proprietor and to the district?
—I think so.
43553. And I think it may be stated of The Mackintosh and his predecessors that in that particular locality the people of the crofting class have been allowed to remain from time immemorial upon the estate?
43554. You say they pay their rents fairly well?
—Yes, with more than average regularity.
43555. With regard to the forests you refer to in Badenoch, I suppose you concur very much with what Sir George Macpherson-Grant has stated?
43556. And the two small forests belonging to The Mackintosh are strictly adapted to forests more than to any other purpose?
—I am not much of a sportsman, but that is my opinion.
43557. Are there any complaints upon the part of the persons living in South Kinrara?
—I have never heard of a single complaint.
43558. You have several tenants on the south side of the Spey?
—Yes, I have never heard of a single complaint.
43559. Sir Kenneth Mackenzie.
—You mentioned that the tenants of Inveroy were sometimes not able to take up an additional croft when it became vacant?
—Sometimes they are not able.
43560. But on the other two townships they were always able to take them up?
—I did not say they were always able to do it.
43561. You never take in a stranger?
—We never take in a stranger.
43562. Then, I presume, they are always able to take them up?
have to pay their share of the sheep stock, but where they get the money
to do it I don't know.
43563. Is it frequent at Inveroy that tenants are not able to take up an
—No; when a croft is out of lease, as a rule the adjoining tenant is only too glad to get it.
43564. Are these club farms let upon lease?
43565. Has each individual a separate lease?
—No, there is just one lease.
43566. In whose name is the lease made out?
—It is a minute of agreement, containing a schedule with the names of all the tenants, and in the body of the lease it is stated that the managers are responsible to the proprietor for the rent.
43567. If one tenant falls into arrear are the whole tenants jointly responsible for that rent?
—I should think so.
43568. Has it ever happened that the other tenants have had to make good the default of a single tenant?
—I cannot tell you. The rents are always paid in a slump sum. The managers come to me with a cheque on the day.
43569. Do the managers have the sole control of the sheep stock?
—The entire control.
43570. Is that sheep stock well managed, in your opinion? Is the utmost profit made out of the land that might be made out of it by an individual farmer?
—I should think not.
43571. You think the interference of the neighbours rather tends to prevent the good management of the stock?
—I don't know very much about it. I am not a practical sheep farmer, so I should not like to say very much about it, but I have asked the managers themselves, and they tell me that in the hands of one man or so, greater returns would be got from the farms.
43572. The Chairman.
—You spoke of the disinclination on the part of crofters of certain townships to take a stranger in among them?
43573. Is that founded on a desire to consolidate or increase their holdings, or is there any religious feeling connected with it? I understand they are almost all Roman Catholics?
—I don't think there is very much religious feeling in it. They would not care about taking in a Protestant, but I don't think the religious feeling operates very greatly.
43574. Are there any single Protestants here and there scattered among these townships?
—I just know one Protestant in Inveroy.
43575. What is the name of The Mackintosh estates?
—They are just called The Mackintosh estates.
43576. Then you appear on behalf of the whole of them?
43577. You say these estates are in the hands, in a great measure, of the crofting class, and generally in the hands of small farmers?
—That is so.
43578. How many tenants are there on the estates below the £30 line?
—Seventy or eighty, I think.
43579. What is the total number on the estate?
—One hundred and seventy.
43580. Of which seventy or eighty are below £30?
—I am wrong. There are about eighty in Lochaber, and probably ten more altogether. There are fully ninety under £30.
43581. So rather more than half the tenants are what we call crofters?
43582. Now, are these ninety smaller tenants living, as it were, generally in crofts or townships, or are there many of them scattered about among the larger tenantry as independent small farmers?
—The great majority reside on these three club farms of which I have spoken. There is another little community at the head of Strath Dearn, where there are nine or ten crofters.
43583. Do these ninety hold under lease?
—Those Lochaber ones hold under lease. The tenants at the head of Strath Dearn have never got a
lease. It is tacit relocation. There has been never a lease since the old one expired.
43584. Do all the tenants hold under written leases?
—No; a good many of them have not written leases.
43585. What is the rule of the estate? Is it to hold under leases or not?
—To hold under leases. These leases are not always extended. Usually there is a missive and acceptance.
43586. But I include missives among leases?
—Then the majority hold under leases.
43587. The majority hold under written agreements?
—The rule of the estate is so.
43588. But still there are many exceptions?
—If you include simple letters, there are not.
43589. By far the greater number hold under written engagements, and, I understand, missive engagements are as binding as written documents?
—Yes, I hold they are.
43590. Can you give me the rental of the estate thirty years ago?
43591. Or the rental fifteen years ago?
—If I am not mistaken, it was about £8000.
43592. What is it at present ?
43593. How has that rise in rental been effected?
—Well, before my time, in the time of some of my predecessors, there was a very large expenditure in erecting shooting lodges and improving the property generally. But at that time there was a large increase in the rental of farms.
43594. I should like to get a general impression of how this rise of £7000 in fifteen years is accounted for. Is it chiefly an increase in sporting rents?
43595. But you cannot give details?
—I should think at least £5000 of it is an addition of sporting rents, or the increase of the former sporting rents.
43596. So that would leave an addition of £2000 on agricultural rents?
43597. Can you tell me whether this increase of agricultural rental has been equally upon the small tenants and on the large, or whether it is chiefly on the large farms that it has accrued?
—There has been very little increase in my time. Any increase there has been in my time has been
pretty evenly spread over the property.
43598. Small and large?
—Small and large.
43599. Have you got any sheep farms out of lease at the present time?
—There are two sheep farms out of lease at the present time.
43600. Have they been advertised?
43601. Has there been great difficulty experienced in finding a tenant?
—-We have not found a tenant.
43602. Were there any offers?
43603. At a great reduction of rental?
—At a considerable reduction of rent.
43604. How much compared with the old rentals?
—We were offered £500 for a farm which formerly let at £600.
43605. You did not accept that?
—There were other reasons which entered into the matter.
43606. I want to arrive at a notion of the depreciation of sheep farms?
—Well, there are only the two. In the one case, as I said, there were other considerations that entered, and the other farm we got no offer for at all.
43607. You said there were other considerations in reference to one of the sheep farms. Was there any idea of letting the sheep farm as a forest?
—None at all. It was a purely personal reason.
43608. Would either of these farms be available for forest purposes?
—One of them is going to form part of a forest.
43609. Which is that?
—The smaller one.
43610. What was the rental of that before?
—£200. It could be added to a very large extent of land to form part of a forest. At the head of Strath Dearn there is a large extent of land, extending to about 40,000 acres, mostly occupied as summer grazings. Another part of that is this farm which I have referred to, and it is now out of lease; and the remainder is occupied by these nine tenants whom I have referred to. They occupy about 10,000 acres, and they are not to be disturbed in any way. The rest of the land consists of summer grazings, the rent of which has within the last year or two fallen from £540 to £195. In these circumstances, and the land being well adapted for forest, it is intended to form part into a forest.
43611. There is a large area of ground which you say you occupy chiefly as summer grazings, the rent of which was at one time £540; who used these grazings?
—Sheep farmers in the low country sent their sheep up there in summer.
43612. Sheep farmers not of the crofting class?
43613. Then in consolidating these summer grazings as a forest, nothing is withdrawn from the crofting class?
—Nothing whatever. They are left exactly as they were.
43611. Then the grazing rent for these places fell from £540 to £195. What was the reason of that decline in value?
—Well, the grazing, although very good, is very high. The sheep cannot remain there for a very long time, I believe, and the tenants refused to continue their holdings except at this great reduction of rent; and, in fact, they did not thank us for giving it to them at the reduction. They would just as soon give it up.
43615. What is the aggregate area of the summer grazings and farms which are now to be consolidated as a forest?
—Close upon 30,000 acres.
43616. Then on The Mackintosh's property there are 30,000 acres, a block, as it were, which has been hitherto used in one form or other for grazing purposes, and which is going to be made into a deer forest?
43617. And that will be let?
—As soon as formed.
43618. In affecting this operation of consolidation and afforestment, has any class of resident persons been disturbed in their holdings or houses in any way?
—Not to the slightest extent.
43619. Are you about to erect a shooting lodge?
—I presume there will be a lodge of some kind erected. There is a small lodge on the ground at present.
43620. I want to arrive at what compensation, as it were, the world is going to get in the form of labour and of buildings in connection with this afforestment. You say there will be a shooting lodge erected?
—There will certainly be a shooting lodge of some kind.
43621. In fact this is a new forest, and is not to be added to another existing forest, but is to be let as a separate subject?
—Yes, let as a separate subject.
43622. Is it in a good situation for making a shooting lodge or a gentleman's residence?
—It is very far out of the way, but there is an excellent site for making a good lodge.
43623. Is it a beautiful and attractive place?
—Yes, very pretty.
43624. Likely to attract a good tenant7
—Yes, in fact, some years ago, when we thought of afforesting it, we were offered a rent of £2000 if a suitable lodge were put up.
43625. What would be the aggregate sheep rental for the same subjects at this moment? There are two farms and the summer grazing. How much rent, if it were let for sheep, would it fetch?
—Even supposing we could get £200 for the farm, which we could not, that would give us £350.
43626. You think the aggregate rental at this moment would be £350, and you hope to be getting how much?
—To that £350 I must add £300 which we at present get.
43627. That would be about £650 ?
43628. Besides that, you will have to expend a considerable sum on building a shooting lodge?
—Yes, say £1000.
43629. I think you might call it £2000 before it is done?
—That depends very much on the size of the lodge. It would cost £2000 for a new house, but there is one there already, and it would not cost so much. However, say £2000.
43630. The interest on which we may take at 7 per cent.; and that represents £140 a year more. That would be £790 which you sacrifice, as it were. Well, you get £2000. The operation will involve a profit to the proprietor, it is hoped, of about £1200 a year?
—I trust it may.
43631. Is there any sacrifice of arable area in that at all?
—There might be about seventy-eight acres.
43632. Seventy-eight acres would be absorbed, but perhaps in connection with the shooting lodge there might be something like a home farm or cows' pasture?
—There would be a forester's house, and the keepers will probably live upon this farm.
43633. So there is not a real sacrifice to wild forest of these seventyeight acres?
—No, not necessarily.
43634. Then according to your theory, there is to be the formation of a new considerable forest with a gain to the proprietor of £1200 a year and a sacrifice to nobody?
—A sacrifice to nobody.
43635. Except whatever amount of meat was raised, in which the general public are concerned?
43636. And that you cannot estimate?
43637. You say that in this operation nobody is disturbed, nobody is deprived of common pasture, or anything of that kind. There is no human local interest injured at all ?
—Not a soul. There is one gentleman who will be disturbed—one of the former witnesses, who said he usually grazed his stock upon this land.
4363S. I hope you will fence that witness's ground?
—There is going to be a very large extent of fencing.
43639. I understand the common grazing of this township will not be included in the area of the forest?
43640. Mr Cameron.
—You mention, in this paper, that these small tenants in Lochaber had got into difficulties of late years?
43641. Do you know how those difficulties arose?
—They paid their accounts by bills and took credit, instead of paying cash, and the interest was added to these accounts.
43642. But how was it that they had not the cash to pay; how did their poorer circumstances arise?
—That I cannot tell. I don't believe they were in poor circumstances, because the poorest township of all has not got into debt. These two that got into debt were the two richest townships.
43643. Do you think it was in any degree by the mismanagement of their sheep stock by those whom they appointed managers?
—No. I believe that, to a certain extent, they went in for greater luxury and extravagance.
43644. You mean they spent more money on themselves?
43645. But it was not owing to any mismanagement or want of skill on the part of those deputed to manage the common stock for the crofters ?
—No, I don't say that.
43646. How do you find the buying and selling in these joint stocks and club farms? Is the buying and selling done pretty well ?
—They come down to the wool market here.
43647. But is the man who comes down on their behalf as well qualified to buy and sell as the ordinary farmer is who manages his own affairs?
—They usually get very good prices.
43648. What I mean to ask you is whether you think there is any want of skill or power of bargaining which appertains to the farmer who manages his business, and does not appertain to the manager of a club farm. Is he as sharp in his bargains as the farmer who works for himself?
—I cannot say he is not.
43649. Have these crofters obtained as good prices for their wool as the market rates would justify?
—Very much about the same —perhaps a little below the price.
43650. And have they sold their lambs as well?
—They sold them last year just a little below the prices that others were getting for blackfaced lambs
of the same kind.
43651. But you have never heard that their affairs were not managed properly by those managers?
—I say they do complain, and that is one of the drawbacks, that the managers don't manage well, and that they don't pull well together.
43652. But you do not attribute the loss of those townships to that?
43653. Do you attribute it in any way to the price of the wool?
—Yes, undoubtedly. They were not getting such profits as they formerly did. They themselves say the sheep stock was giving a very small return indeed. Some years, when sheep and wool were high, they must have got large returns, and probably got into the habit of spending these returns.
43654. Did their difficulties begin before the price of wool fell, or after?
—They have increased very much lately.
43655. Do I understand clearly that you mean to give us the impression that 30,000 acres of land is now only worth for grazing purposes, exclusive of shooting rents, £350 a year?
—That is what we actually get for it.
43656. £350 is the actual value to the public and the community of the amount of mutton or whatever it may be that could be raised or fed upon this land by farmers?
—The farmers I mentioned really don't care about keeping on these summer sheilings unless they can get them for nothing at all.
43657. I know all about that. I only -want to be sure you are accurate about the 30,000 acres and £350, because it seems very small?
—It is quite correct.
43658. Mr Fraser-Mackintosh.
—With regard to the management, are the managers in these townships freely elected by the whole body?
43659. Is it not to be presumed, therefore, that they select the wisest men among them for that purpose?
—I suppose they think so at the time, but they may discover afterwards that they have made a mistake. There is a natural jealousy sometimes.
43660. With regard to the new forest that is proposed, in old times, before forests were let, was not this particular district well known and famous for its red deer?
—Yes, and it has always been frequented by red deer.
43661. And it is commonly called Monadhliath?
43662. Has the matter, as it were, been forced upon the present proprietor?
—Entirely. That is the only way to make anything out of this enormous tract of land. It has come to a crisis now.