The Premier Historical Museum & Research Center in Ohio's First Capital
Whether you are a life-long resident or visiting the Chillicothe area for the first time, a stop at the Ross County Heritage Center offers an excellent opportunity to understand how the community came to be and how it developed over two and a quarter centuries into what it is today. The Heritage Center connects the Ross County Historical Society's main museum and McKell Library creating one large facility with many stories to tell. From the lobby, you may tour exhibits focusing on the history of the Northwest Territory and founding of the state of Ohio; how and why Chillicothe became Ohio's first capital; the prehistoric cultures of the Scioto River Valley; Ross County’s involvement in the Civil War; Camp Sherman & World War I; historical toys & dolls; early Ohio decorative arts, folk art, fine art & portraiture; and historical vehicles & transportation. The tour includes the Knoles Log House, which features artifacts and décor that will help you visualize what life was like in early Ross County. From there you have the option to tour the Franklin House – our outstanding early 20th-century house museum designed by noted Ohio architect Frank Packard.
If historical research is your thing, explore the amazing holdings of the McKell Library – our research center and repository for thousands of rare books, journals, manuscripts, historical documents, and photographs.
Before leaving, we invite you to visit our gift shop where books, maps, and reproduction artifacts related to our museum collections may be purchased.
The Ross County Heritage Center is fully ADA accessible from the main entrance through all public areas including second floor exhibit galleries. Off-street parking for automobiles and buses is also ADA compliant and but a short distance from the front entrance.
Knoles Log House
January - March:
By Appointment Only
April - December:
Tuesday - Saturday
Closed on Major Holidays