Kaluga city (1990 pop. 313,000), capital of Kaluzhskaya oblast, central European Russia, on the Oka River. It is a river port, railway junction, and an industrial center producing railroad and electrical equipment and turbines. In 1941 it was captured by German forces.
First mentioned in 1371 in the deed of Lithuanian prince Olgerd. It was appeared as a frontier fortress in south-west borders of Moscovy. Kaluga was annexed my Moscovy since XV century. Since 1796 it is the center of Kaluga Region.
K.E.Tsiolkovsky (1857 - 1935) lived the most part of his life in Kaluga. He buried there. Tsiolkovsky is a Russian rocket pioneer who is generally regarded as the father of space travel. His memorial museum was opened in September 19, 1936. This memorial located in the building where Tsiolkovsky lived more than 29 years. Now, there is a branch of the Astronatics History Museum which is foumded in Kaluga in 1967.
Discovered natural deposits in Kaluga include brown coal, peat, phosphorites, gypsum, chalk; glass, moulding and construction sand, and clay, as well as a large stocks of mineral waters. Another natural resource is wood: the total forested area of the oblast is 1.28 million hectares, and timber reserves are estimated at 191 million cubic meters of primarily deciduous breeds.
Major industries include:
- Machinery and metallurgy
- Wood and paper
- Electrical engineering
Agriculture is one of the most significant sectors of Kaluga economy, and it contributes up to 30% of the regional product. There are 1.3 million hectares of agricultural land in Kaluga, of which 78% is arable. The climate favors growing winter and spring crops, as well as potato and other vegetables. However, the leading branch of agribusiness is cattle-breeding, which accounts for 60% of the oblast's agricultural output. The oblast administration places a high priority on development of the oblast's agricultural sector. In particular, the oblast wishes to develop its flax industry, which sustains 6 flax-processing plants in the region.
Among the monuments to the past there are: the stone building by Korobovy (1697), the churches of the XVII - XVIII centuries, the stone bridge (1777-1778), the building of the XVII-XIX centuries.