History of Kulva

Kulva is a very old settlement. However, there is not much written knowledge about Kulva. It was first mentioned in written sources in the New Prussian Chronicle in 1382. Therefore, next year Kulva will celebrate its 640th anniversary.

Later, the Crusaders mention Kulva and Kulva region, describing their routes to Kernave, Vilnius and Trakai. It is told that there was a wooden castle in Kulva, which is mentioned in the list of Lithuanian wooden castles. When the Crusaders began to attack our land, such settlements became a kind of defensive outposts with small wooden castles, where people hid when the enemy approached.

More knowledge about Kulva can be found in the 16th century documents. These documents state that there used to be a manor here that belonged to the nobleman named Gedgaudas. Later it belonged to the Adaiciai noblemen family. The Upper and Lower Kulvas are mentioned in the written documents. In Upper Kulva, some of the buildings of Daigučiai manor, which have survived to this day, were built in the 19th century. Daigučiai manor house (and its farm building), built in
1840, has not been ruined up to this day.

Coat of arms

of the community of Kulva

Abraomas Kulvietis – XVI a.

Pioneer of Lithuania writing, founder of the first Lithuania higher education institution, first Protestant in Lithuania.

Probably, Abraomas Kulvietis was the one, who spread the fame of Kulva most. A. Kulvietis is thought to have been born around the year 1510 in the noblemen Adaičiai family (later named Kulvietis according to the tradition of that time) in Kulva. The nobles Adaičiai were not famous for their wealth. The fact that the Adaičiai were not rich is probably most clearly illustrated in Kulva Manor Inventory Act of 1594.
The main shingled building of the manor had two sitting rooms, several barns, a sauna, granaries, a kitchen-bakery, threshing-floor and a small garden. Not only does the act list buildings, but also old and new clothes, copper utensils, animals, etc.

However, poverty did not prevent Mr. Kulvietis from pursuing his studies in Krakow, Leipzig, Louvain, Wittenberg, Königsberg, Siena and obtaining a doctor’s degree in law and becoming a professor of Greek and Hebrew languages. Under the auspices of Queen Bona, he established a first college school in Vilnius.

A. Kulvietis was the greatest erudite of that time. He maintained contacts with the world-famous scientists and did a lot for the benefit of the Reformation and Lithuanian history. The letter that has remained present up to this day, written by Sigismund the Old, king: “one Lithuanian, so called Abraomas from Kulva, our subordinate, separates himself from the Holy Roman Catholic Church, and calls the others to make the same mistake…”
He wrote anthems in Lithuanian when Lithuanians did not yet have their books, and some of his writings were published in the Mažvydas catechism. A. Kulvietis died in 1545 in Kulva.

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Historical Facts


First mentioned

Kulva was first mentioned in written sources in the New Prussian Chronicle in 1382. In 2021, Kulva celebrated its 640th anniversary.


Abraomas Kulvietis was born

A. Kulvietis was born around 1510. Kulva in the Adaičiai family of nobles (later surrendered according to the tradition of Kulviečiai at that time).


High school

Under the auspices of Queen Bonn, with like-minded people, A. Kulvietis established the first higher school in Vilnius, where about 60 young people studied.


Abraomas Kulvietis died

A. Kulvietis died in 1545 in Kulva.

Past and present

An obelisk was built in the highest place of the region to commemorate the memory of Kulvietis. Every year the people of Jonava, organize the March 11 run to mark the restoration of Lithuania’s independence. A monument was unveiled in Kulva Park, and the Kulva School was named after A. Kulvietis.

Kulva – a church village. The first Roman Catholic wooden chapel here was built in the beginning of the 16th century. It was probably built on a beautiful hill on the site where previously a castle used to be located. The stone chapel was built under Jonas Parcevskis’ funding and care. It was later passed on to the Catholics in 1647. The chapel was under redecoration until the year 1710. In 1782, they added a church-porch. Kulva Church then was a branch of Skaruliai Parish.

Through the efforts of manors and pro-polish priests, Kulva surroundings were converted into a Polish culture zone. Later, at the end of 19th century and beginning of the 20th century a Lithuanian national revival began to manifest itself in Lithuania. On the initiative of Priest Julijonas Norkevicius, a parish library was established. In 1909, Kulva parish was established. During the years 1909–1914, there was a branch of the Lithuanian Catholic Sobriety Society in Kulva.

On September 1, 1901, Kulva Folk School was established.
During the years 1924–1928 Kulva Primary School head was Stasys Tijunaitis,
He was also the editor of the children’s newspaper “Zvaigzdute” (Eng. “Star”) here.
This is what S. Tijunaitis wrote about Kulva in 1925 in the newspaper “Vienybe” (Eng. “Unity“):
Residents. Church festivals. Rains.
Kulva (Kaunas County). The site of Kulva is quite old, i.e. about three centuries old. At the beginning there used to be just a small oratory, where a priest would come seldom to celebrate the mess. Later on, when it was enlarged and a priest would have where to live, it belonged to Skaruliai church. Moreover, all of a sudden it is called a Parish. In addition, there emerged a centre – a church with rectory and school, one farmer, one seller and two clambakes to be liquidated in the manor. The parish is present between Lapes and Vandziogala, Zeimiai and Jonava, and Skaruliai. The residents of this whole county are the odd people. They are quite pro-polished and fooled. The pro-pro-polishing is somehow invisibly fostered and felt. They have little national, economic and political command. There is plenty of illiteracy. They live in villages and do not reveal themselves if to talk to a single village. There are present smoky cabins. There are lots of the unemployed, however, it is of great difficulty to find a worker. The employed want to earn a year salary. There are present lots of alcoholics.
No 39 UNITY 311
No 39 25th September, 1925. Year XVII

Following the initiative of the mayor, Ramūnas Gudonavicius a memorial plaque was unveiled in Kulva to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Lithuania’s statehood. This memorial was dedicated to the volunteers of the Lithuanian Armed Forces of Kulva Region, which contributed to the creation, and preservation of Lithuania as an independent state.

Kulva also has its own coat of arms legalized by the Presidential Decree of 2014. A white swan is presented on a blue background.
People that are more famous originated from Kulva region or used to live and work here. These people have made not only this region, but also Lithuania famous for their works.
These people belong to the family of folk artists Maciuliai (whose paintings and carvings still adorn Kulva Church); poet Audra Stasiukonyte; poet, play writer and priest Juozapas Katinas; folk artist and wood carver Janina Listvina; pedagogue Jonas Kartanas, etc.



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The project “Ways of Jonava Region Writing” is dedicated to the preservation and nurturing of famous people of Jonava region who have contributed to the basics of the history of Lithuanian writing: Abraomas Kulvietis, Petras Vaičiūnas, Justinas Vareikis.

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