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Chilhowie, Virginia facts for kids

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Town of Chilhowie, Virginia
Chilhowie Historic District.jpg
Official seal of Town of Chilhowie, Virginia
Valley of Many Deer
Country United States
State Virginia
County Smyth
 • Total 2.6 sq mi (6.7 km2)
 • Land 2.6 sq mi (6.7 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
1,952 ft (595 m)
 • Total 1,827
 • Density 704/sq mi (272.0/km2)
  U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 Population Estimates
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 276
FIPS code 51-16480
GNIS feature ID 1464850

Chilhowie is a town in Smyth County, Virginia, United States. The population was 1,781 at the 2010 census. The name Chilhowie is said to come from a Cherokee word meaning “valley of many deer”.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.7 km²), all of it land.

The Chilhowie Baptist Church on U.S. Route 11 in Chilhowie, Virginia.


Chilhowie was often the starting point of longhunter expeditions in the 1700s. It also sustained severe damage from an EF-2 tornado during the April 25–28, 2011 tornado outbreak.

A.C. Beatie House, H.L. Bonham House, Chilhowie Methodist Episcopal Church, and the Downtown Chilhowie Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 572
1930 712 24.5%
1940 889 24.9%
1950 1,022 15.0%
1960 1,169 14.4%
1970 1,317 12.7%
1980 1,265 −3.9%
1990 1,960 54.9%
2000 1,827 −6.8%
2010 1,781 −2.5%
2015 (est.) 1,741 −2.2%

As of the 2000 census, there were 1,827 people, 708 households, and 462 families residing in the town. The population density was 704.6 people per square mile (272.4/km²). There were 775 housing units at an average density of 298.9 per square mile (115.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 94.47% White, 3.07% African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.05% Asian, 1.48% from other races, and 0.60% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.13% of the population.

Out of a total of 708 households, 24.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.2% were married couples living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.7% were non-families. 31.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 15.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 2.76.

In the town, the population was spread out with 17.2% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 24.2% from 25 to 44, 24.4% from 45 to 64, and 28.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females there were 78.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 76.0 males.

The median income for a household in the town was US$28,266, and the median income for a family was US$34,375. Males had a median income of US$24,306 compared with US$18,080 for females. The per capita income for the town was US$16,657. About 10.3% of families and 13.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.5% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.


The climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, and there is adequate rainfall year-round. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Chilhowie has a marine west coast climate, abbreviated "Cfb" on climate maps.

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