Chillicothe, Missouri

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Chillicothe is a city in and the county seat of Livingston County, Missouri, United States.[3] The population was 8,968 at the 2000 census. The name "Chillicothe" is Shawnee for "big town", and was named after their Chillicothe, located since 1774 about a mile from the present-day city.

Chillicothe is one of only two cities named in the world-famous song "Hooray for Hollywood" that opens the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Awards (The Oscars).

The 1937 song (lyrics by Johnny Mercer and music by Richard A. Whiting) contains in the second verse: "Hooray for Hollywood! That phony, super Coney, Hollywood. They come from Chilicothes and Padukahs..." Both cities were misspelled in the original lyrics. The correct spellings are "Chillicothe" and "Paducah".


History of Chillicothe and Livingston County

This territory was originally settled by indigenous peoples of the Americas. The Osage and Missouri were in the territory at the time of earliest European contact, which was mostly by French explorers and traders. By 1800 the Shawnee and Iowa had migrated here. The Shawnee came from the Ohio Country, where they had been under pressure before the American Revolution from aggressive Iroquois and later encroaching European Americans. Displacing the Osage, the Shawnee had a major village known as Chillicothe about a mile from the present-day city. Chillicothe was also the name of a major band of the tribe. Other Native American tribes in the area were the Sac and Fox, and Pottawatomi, all of whom hunted in the area.[4]

In the early 19th century, European-American migration to Missouri increased. The original survey of Chillicothe by United States citizens was filed for record August 31, 1837, and a resurvey of the same was filed August 5, 1859.[5] Chillicothe was incorporated as a city by an act of the General Assembly, approved March 1, 1855. It was selected as the County seat by commissioners and the first term of the county court began on May 7, 1838. In August of that year an order was made to erect the first Court House, to cost not to exceed $5,000, in the Public Square; The first circuit court for the trial of civil and criminal causes was held on the 3d of July 1887.[6]

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