It is situated in the glacial valley of the river Spree north of the Rauen Hills, about 60 km (37 mi) east of Berlin and 30 km (19 mi) west of Frankfurt (Oder) and the border with Poland. The district capital Beeskow is about 25 km (16 mi) to the southeast. In the north, the municipal area comprises the village of Trebus. The town is located on the western rim of historic Lubusz Land.
Furstenwalde in the Margraviate of Brandenburg was first mentioned in a 1272 deed, founded in the course of the German Ostsiedlung migration at a ford across the Spree River, probably near the site of a former Slavic settlement. The town's importance rose as a staple port and terminal of the transportation of goods on the river.
The last Catholic bishop was Georg von Blumenthal (1490-1550), who was besieged in his palace by Reformist robbers led by Nickel von Minkwitz. The Bishop had to escape through a window in disguise. The bishopric was secularized during the Reformation in 1555, and was completely disbanded at the ascension of Joachim Frederick as Margrave of Brandenburg in 1598.
Development of Population since 1875 within the Current Boundaries (Blue Line: Population; Dotted Line: Comparison to Population Development of Brandenburg state; Grey Background: Time of Nazi rule; Red Background: Time of Communist rule)
Recent Population Development (Blue Line) and Forecasts
Population development within the current boundaries (2013)