Chillicothe, a city of Ohio, capital of Ross county, on the right bank of the Scioto river, 45 m. in a direct line, or 70 m. following the windings, above its junction with the Ohio, and 3 m. above the mouth of Paint creek, 45 m. S. of Columbus, and 96 m. N. E. of Cincinnati; pop. in 1870, 8,920. The Marietta and Cincinnati railroad renders accessible the rich coal and iron mines of southern Ohio. The Ohio and Erie canal extends from Portsmouth, at the mouth of the Scioto, through this city, to Columbus and Cleveland. Chillicothe is the centre of nearly all the trade of the rich farming country bordering on the Scioto, one of the finest agricultural districts of the United States. It is beautifully situated, 30 ft. above the river, on a plain which forms the bottom of a valley, enclosed by two ranges of cultivated hills 500 ft. high. The principal avenues follow the course of the stream, and are intersected at right angles by others, all lighted with gas, and regularly planned. The two main streets, which cross each other in the centre of the city, are each 99 ft. wide; Water street, facing the river, is 82 1/2 ft. wide; and the width of the others is 66 ft.
A supply of water is obtained from works erected at a cost of $75,000. There are many handsome public buildings, including 13 churches, 4 brick school houses, and a stone court house, which cost over $100,000. The manufacturing industry is important, embracing 7 carriage and wagon factories, 3 flour mills, 5 bakeries, a machine shop, a saw mill, a distillery, a manufactory of agricultural implements and edge tools, a planing mill, a paper mill, a pork-packing establishment, a book-bindery, an iron foundery, and a manufactory of mattresses. There are 11 hotels, an insurance company, and 3 national banks with an aggregate capital of $400,000. The city is divided into four wards, and is governed by a mayor and a common council of two members from each ward. It contains 36 public schools, including a high school, which in 1871 had 42 teachers and an average attendance of 1,857. There are also two Catholic parochial schools, with an average attendance of 692, a commercial college, a select school for girls, and three newspapers.
Chillicothe was founded by emigrants from Virginia in 1796, and from 1800 to 1810 was the seat of the state government.