Population data. – The population of Estonia at the time of the first census (1922) amounted to 1,110,000 residents, a figure that did not increase much in 1930 (1,114,861). As for the different nationalities, for 1922 we have the following figures: 970,000 (87.7%) Estonians, 91,000 (8.2%) Russians, 18,000 (1.7%) Germans, 7800 (0.7%) Swedes, 4,600 (0.4%) Jews and 14,500 (1.3%) others. Those belonging to minorities are settled in different groups: the Swedes mostly in the West, and the Russians in the Estonia The Germans mostly live in the two cultural centers of the state, Tallinn and Tartu; at one time many of them were also landowners and lived in the countryside. At the Russian time the German element was much greater: in the year 1820 about 43% of the residents of Tallinn were German, and in Tartu in 1881 the Germans were still more than 35%. Today they are reduced to 5.6% and 6.4% respectively. The movement of the population appears to be unfavorable, as the birth rate in 1929 was 17% and the death rate was 18.1. Estonia is in this respect the state of Europe that is in the worst condition. However, it must be borne in mind that the war and post-war years have naturally influenced the decreasing number of births. The highest percentages of the birth rate occur in the territories inhabited by the Russians, where it reaches 35%. However, it must be borne in mind that the war and post-war years have naturally influenced the decreasing number of births. The highest percentages of the birth rate occur in the territories inhabited by the Russians, where it reaches 35%. However, it must be borne in mind that the war and post-war years have naturally influenced the decreasing number of births. The highest percentages of the birth rate occur in the territories inhabited by the Russians, where it reaches 35%.
As for culture, the country is distinguished by the relatively low number of illiterate people. Already at the beginning of the century. XX the territory of present-day Estonia belonged to an area with about 5-20% illiterate people, while the remaining Russia reached about 60%. In 1922 (the year of the last census) the number of illiterates in the Estonian population over ten years old was 5.6-5.3%. The first number refers to those who can neither read nor write, the second to those who can only read. The highest percentages of illiterates are found among the Russians and the “Setukesi”, where the number exceeds 10%.
In the historical reconstruction of Estonia, we find that since the century. XIII Estonian countries are more or less the same as today, except that borders have often changed. There are 11 districts in Estonia: Viru, Järva, Harju, Lääne, Saare, Pärnu, Viljandi, Tartu, Valga, Võru, Petseri.
Distribution of the population. – The population of Estonia is far from dense as it barely reaches 23 residents per sq. km. In fact, the numerous marshes and muddy soils in the plains of Pärnu and northern Peipus are uninhabited. The highest densities are noted in the SE. of the country, which is inhabited by the Russians (Petseri district, with about 32 residents per sq. km.) and towards the NW. A relatively dense population is also noticeable in the capital district (39 residents Per sq. Km.). The population is predominantly rural; only 24.2% is in the cities and 3.2% in the hamlets. The capital of the state is Tallinn (121 thousand residents on 31 January 1931), while the intellectual center of the republic is the old university city of Tartu (70 thousand residents), on the Ema jõgi. Narva (pop. 26,400) is an important industrial city near the Russian border; Pärnu; with 21,600 residents, it is the second port of the west; Baltiski (or Paldiski) with 1200 residents is today a quiet town with a small port to the West of the capital; Valga (Walk) with 12,700 residents on the Latvian border, important for its traffic, is a border station on the Riga-Tartu-Tallinn line; Viljandi (with 12,800 residents) In the southern part of the country is the best known agricultural center.
Among the other smaller cities that are located in the southeast corner of the state, the commercial city of Petseri, with 4400 residents, is still worthy of mention.
Data on internal emigration are scarce; we therefore limit ourselves to mentioning that during the short decade of state autonomy an influx of population occurred only towards the fertile regions of the south-east; this also results from the population increase of the city of Petseri, which in 1922 hosted only z000 residents, while in 1930, as mentioned, it already counted 4400. Emigration abroad is around 3000 people. year.