Chillicothe was settled around 1830 as Native Americans were leaving.  The original town was laid out in 1834 with the businesses located along Front Street so that goods could be hand carried from the river boats to shops.

Chillicothe was an important river shipping point with farming as the main industry.  Grain was shipped from two elevators by the river.  The prime location on the Illinois River made market hunting and commercial fishing important industries.

In 1854 the Rock Island Railroad arrived and caused movement of the business district to Second Street, a location midway between the railroad depot and the riverfront.  This was also the year the first newspaper was printed.  Public schools opened the next year, a bank in 1868 and a food cannery in 1883.  The Santa Fe Railroad arrived in 1887 and soon started a gravel mine north of town.

The Peoria Automobile Club began in 1913 and built a clubhouse for travelers from Peoria.  Now called Shore Acres Park Clubhouse, it is on the National Registry of Historic Places and the focal point of the Chillicothe Park District.


Chillicothe is located north of Peoria and is part of the Tri-County area.  Chillicothe offers the advantages of a small community such as low taxes, low crime rates, and an excellent school district.


Chillicothe consists of many businesses including restaurants, printers, graphic design studios, contractors, architects, real estate agents, attorneys, accountants, insurance agents and financial services.



Illinois Valley School District #321 provides education services to the Chillicothe and Mossville areas.  Schools within the district include:  www.ivcschools.com

Parks & Attractions

The Chillicothe Park District maintains five parks in the community.  An aquatic park, swimming, tennis, Frisbee golf, and scenic beauty are some of the amenities provided at the various parks.

Other attractions include docks for boat launching on the Illinois River, a recreational area offering camping, swimming and fishing, two historical museums, a community center for health and fitness, a country club golf course and a specialty park dedicated to educating the public on historical farm living and agriculture.

Shopping, Restaurants, and Lodging

Shopping in the Historic Downtown area, the stores on Fourth Street or any of the other locations in town provide a variety of specialty shops rich with atmosphere and gifts from around the globe.  All offer the friendliness you expect to find in a quaint small town.  An abundance of antiques and art are offered at several locations.

Coffee, pizza, prime rib, tacos or anything in between is available throughout the city.

There are two hotels in town, both of which offer comfortable accommodations and moderate room rates.

Information obtained from City of Chillicothe Marketing and Tourism.  For more information about Chillicothe visit the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce at www.chillicothechamber.com