Kaluga Oblast is a federal subject of Russia (an oblast). Its administrative center is the city of Kaluga. Population: 1,010,930 (2010 Census).
Established in 1944, Kaluga Oblast is located in the heart of the European part of Russia. It has well-developed transportation and utility infrastructure. The oblast has been demonstrating high economic growth rates, has substantial human reserves, and is one of the largest cultural, educational and scientific centers of Russia. The territory of Kaluga Oblast has been inhabited since ancient times. The oldest human sites discovered by archeologists date back to the Mesolithic period (10,000–6,000 BC). The first mentions of Kaluga’s towns are associated with events in the 12th century.
In the 14th century, Kaluga lands were the place for constant confrontations between Lithuania and Moscow. In 1371, Olgerd, grand duke of Lithuania, wrote to Philotheos, patriarch of Constantinople, to complain about Alexei, metropolitan of Kiev and all Russia, who seized some of his cities, including Kaluga, which in that letter is mentioned for the first time. Traditionally, it is considered that Kaluga was established as a frontier to protect the Moscow principality from Lithuania’s attacks.
In the 16th and 17th centuries, with active development of trade and crafts, Kaluga became more than a military outpost. Sources indicate that the rich city was advanced in the arts of wood carving and jewelry. After the reunification of Russia and the Ukraine in 1654, Kaluga's role as a trade intermediary between Moscow and the Ukraine contributed even more to its economic development.
During the rule of Paul I, in 1795 Kaluga Viceroyalty was transformed into a governorate.
The end of the 18th century and the first three decades of the 19th century were a period of economic stability. Kaluga continued to act as an intermediary, trading with Moscow, Petersburg, Ukraine, Siberia, Poland and German cities.