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Chillicothe is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and the county seat of Ross County. The municipality is located in southern Ohio along the Scioto River. The name comes from the Shawnee name Chalahgawtha, meaning "principal town." It was the first and third capital of Ohio.
The population was 21,796 at the 2000 census. According to the US Census 2006 estimate, Chillicothe has a population of 22,216, while the Columbus-Marion-Chillicothe, OH Combined Statistical Area has 1,953,575 people. The city is the largest in Ross County, and the center of the Chillicothe Micropolitan Statistical Area (as defined by the United States Census Bureau in 2003).
Chillicothe served as the capital of Ohio from the beginning of statehood in 1803 until 1810 when Zanesville became the capital for two years. The capital moved to Zanesville as part of a deal to get a bill passed in the House of Representatives and the Senate. In 1812 the capital moved back to Chillicothe until 1816 when the capital moved to Columbus. Columbus became the capital because of the desire to have the capital near the geographic center of the state.