If good food defines a town, then Chatham is well defined. Chatham restaurants provide breakfast, lunch, and dinner options. Collectively they provide a lot of varity in a small town. Each establishment can be accessed with a short walk down Main Street. Join us, and break bread at the following establishments. 


callands coffee chatham vaCallands Coffee


11 South Main Street, Chatham, VA 24531
For take-out: 434-822-3530.
Small Batch Roaster.
Serving coffee, Monday-Friday 8am-4pm, Saturday 9am-12pm.
Chatham wakes up with Callands! Fresh roasted sustainable coffee. Take-out only. Offering the highest quality specialty coffees from around the world. Donuts and other beverage options available.


el cazador chatham vaEl Cazador III - Chatham

15 South Main Street, Chatham, VA 24531
For dine-in and take-out: 434-432-4288.
Mexican Restaurant.
Open seven days a week serving lunch and dinner. Monday-Thursday 11am-2:30pm, 4:30pm-10pm; Friday, Saturday, Sunday 11am-10pm.
Mexican cooking. Dine-in and take-out service. Catering service. Beer, wine, margaritas, and other mixed drinks. Daily specials. Mexican plates include burritos, chicken, enchiladas, Mexican sausage, Mexican seafood, quesadillas, tacos, and more. Desserts include Fried Ice Cream, Flan, and more.



hunt and companyHunt & Co. Restaurant, Catering, & Venue

24 Reid Street, Chatham, VA 24531
For dine-in, take-out, or delivery: 434-433-2270, order online.
Southern restaurant; regional specialties.
Open five days per week for lunch. Monday-Friday 11am to 2pm.
Known for its BBQ, Hunt & Co. excels at smoked meats using either hickory or applewood logs. Smoked meats include beef, chicken, and pork. When available, additional options include deer, duck, moose, oyster, prime rib, quail, and rabbit. Chicken & Waffles (waffles with two breast tenders with butter and syrup), hamburgers, hot dogs, chili, salads, and soups are also popular. Daily specials. Options for vegetarians, gluten free, and meat restricted Alpha-gal (alpha-galactosidase) diets. Locally sourced ingredients. Always fresh, nothing frozen.
Catering and venue includes full ABC license and a large menu variety. Travelling smokers, rotisserie, and meat slicer. For anniversaries, birthdays, corporate functions, funerals, and weddings. Full catering to at least 1,700 quests. Chatham venue features a full kitchen, a unique atmosphere, and seating for 140 with a maximum capacity of 200. Voted Virginia Living’s Best BBQ for 2017, 2018, and 2019.


J&T's on the Main

33 North Main Street, Chatham, VA 24531
For reservations and take-out: 434-433-2182, through Facebook.
Casual Fine Dining.
Serving dinner, Tuesday to Saturday, 5pm until close.
Fresh steak and seafood deliciously presented by owners John Turner and Travis Stinnett. Dine-in and take-out service. Entrees include boneless pork, catfish, chicken, crab, filets, Portabella mushrooms, ribeyes, ribs, Salmon, shrimp, and Tilapia. Entrees arrive with a choice of sides. A choice of four pasta dishes offered. Hungry for more? Add-Ons available. Please call about the Fish of the Day and specials.

Sooner or later, everyone, in some part of their lives, wonders where they came from. Millions of people are actively engaged in some form of family research. Although in our modern world, Chatham is a small rural town, it is also a County Seat in a region first settled in the mid-1700's. Many of those first residents and their descendants continued on as business opportunities, family, love, or just plain old wanderlust came over them. Thus, a surprisingly large number of folks can trace their family roots through our area.

Although many of you came to this part of this site looking for particular resources, some may be just curious about all the excitement. Kimberly Powell at genealogy.about.com list some common reasons to research your family's history:

  • To satisfy your curiosity about yourself and your roots.
  • To provide your children with a sense of who their ancestors were, where they came from and how they lived their lives.
  • To preserve family cultural and ethnic traditions for future generations.
  • To compile a medical family history to give family members an advantage in the battle against inherited diseases or defects.
  • To qualify for a lineage or heritage society.
  • To assemble and publish a family history book, whether for family members or for profit.
  • To discover facts that others have overlooked and solve the puzzle of a lifetime.

Several local historians and history buffs are in the Chatham area. Pittsylvania Historical Society members are particularly helpful to those search for information on forebearers that may have come through Chatham. Two potentially useful publications are an article entitled "Genealogical Treasures at the Clerk's Office," by Herman Melton and Henry Mitchell, in the November 1991 issue of the Packet, the quarterly journal of the Pittsylvania Historical Society and a brochure entitled A Visitors Guide to Historical Genealogical Research in Chatham, VA, by the same authors, published in 1997 by Chatham First.

Both of these sources will point you to the Pittsylvania County Clerk's Office (3 North Main Street, 432-7887) and the Pittsylvania County Public Library (24 Military Drive, 432-3271), both located within blocks of each other in downtown Chatham.

On the web, the authors of the articles as well as Patricia and Sarah Mitchell have compiled a wonderful list of resources which includes both online resources, contact information for individual researchers, as well as additional information about information physically available (in order words, the old fashioned, non-computerized, type of primary resources that gets the blood of a geneologist pumping) at the County Clerk's Office and the County Public Library .

Chatham, Virginia has a rich history that extends beyond the founding of the United States. It has witnessed the Revolutionary War, the U.S. Civil War, World War I, World War II, and the Cold War. Explorers, historians, and travellers will delight in nuanced bits of history found throughout the Town and Pittsylvania County.

Two walking tours, "A Self-Guided Tour of Chatham" by F.H. Hurt and "A Tour of Historic Chatham, VA" by Herman Melton are available for the historically adventurous.

Non-historical sites are also available to visit and are easily accessible from Chatham. For overnight stays and weekend get-a-ways, please check out the Accommodations and Dining in Chatham pages. All Points of Interest are family friendly.


1813 clerk's office1813 Clerk's Office, Town of Chatham

16 Court Place, Chatham, VA 24531

An appointment is required to visit. Please call 434-432-9515.

Located “in the backyard” of Chatham's Town Hall, the Pittsylvania County Clerk's Office of 1813 remains near the same spring that was designated by court order for its original placement. Currently surrounded by a town park, with a pavilion for picnics, a gazebo for seating and a reconstructed tobacco barn for viewing, the Pittsylvania Historical Society restored this L-shaped brick building with a Virginia Department of Historic Resources grant. Listed in 1981 as a Virginia Historic Landmark and 1982 on the National Register of Historic Places, it is now a museum containing a 1,000 local historical artifacts.

Laid in Flemish bond with dogtooth corbels for cornices with four rows of unmolded brick set at a 45-degree angle, this red brick building looks similar to Virginia's early government structures all the way across the state to the Tidewater section. Three outside entries have heavy wooden bars inside as well as shuttered windows of 18 panes. There are four fireplaces within two rooms, with chair rails, plastered walls and stone floors.

In 2007, the Society placed restrooms nearby to accommodate visitors to the county seat. The Town of Chatham owns the structure.


callands clerk's officeCallands Clerk's Office, Courthouse & "Gaol" (Jail)

Found on the west side of VA 969 - 1/2 mile north of VA 57, Virginia Highway Marker (Q-12a)

An appointment is required to visit. Please call 434-432-9338.

American History was created in Callands when citizens from the area elected a Committee of Safety to stand against King George III in 1775. The Clerk's Office was completed around 1771 and is available for tours with sufficient advance notice. This structure has been restored and is the center for the annual Callands Festival on the first weekend of October.


mars riding arenaMars Riding Arena at Chatham Hall

800 Chatham Hall Circle, Chatham, VA

An appointment is required to visit. Please call 434-432-2941.

Chatham Hall boasts the Mars Riding Arena. The facility works with all levels of riders with a focus on the American Forward System of Riding fundamentals in accordance with modern hunter and equitation styles. Riders gain from mounted and unmounted instruction, a fitness plan, best dietary habits, and sports psychology. In addition to the Arena, Chatham Hall maintains fields, including a permanent hunter trial course.

The Mars Riding Arena supports a competitive Interscholastic Equestrian Team (IEA) team. The team hosts multiple shows on campus each year, travels throughout our region, attends A-rated competitions, and routinely qualifies for Zones and National Finals. Additionally, the team hosts the Southwest Virginia Hunter Jumper Association show on campus.

Chatham Hall was built in 1894 as an all girl's preparatory school. It's beautiful campus provides a sanctuary for academic study and personal achievement. Chatham Hall has remained active since its founding and requires an invitation to tour.


onishi davenport aquatic centerOnishi-Davenport Aquatic Center at Hargrave Military Academy

200 Military Drive, Chatham, VA

An appointment is required to visit. Please call 434-432-2481.

The Onishi-Davenport Aquatic Center brings big city aquatics to Chatham, Pittsylvania County, and most of Southside Virginia. It features eight 50m lanes by 24 25y lanes, providing opportunities to race both the American and Olympic courses. Several U.S. Olympic Trial qualifications have been achieved in a pool designed for speed. It is not uncommon for athletes to earn 80% best times during Hargrave hosted swimming meets. The indoor pool contains almost a million gallons of water and is heated all year.

The Onishi-Davenport Aquatic Center supports two teams, a varsity cadet swimming program and a USA Swimming program. Both have successful racing histories. The USA Swimming program and other structured pool activities are available to the local community. The Onishi-Davenport Aquatic Center is open to the public at scheduled times.

Hargrave Military Academy was built in 1909 as an all boy's preparatory school. Founded as Chatham Training School, its students urged the school to adopt a military structure to support American troops in WW I. The Academy successfully combines academics, leadership training, athletics, and spiritual development into a core Hargrave focus.


pittsylvania county courthousePittsylvania County Courthouse, Pittsylvania County

1 North Main Street, Chatham, VA

Open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. To learn more, please call 434-432-7887.

The Pittsylvania County Courthouse is located at 1 North Main Street in downtown Chatham. It remains an active part of the Pittsylvania County General District Court, which is now a complex extending from the rear of the original structure. Built in 1853, this Greek Revival building remains Pittsylvania County's third courthouse.

The Pittsylvania County Courthouse is listed in the Virginia and National Register of Historic Places due to a landmark court case. In 1878, Judge J.D. Coles, a district judge, was arrested for violating the Civil Rights Act of 1875 by excluding African Americans from the jury selection process for grand juries and trial juries. Coles filed for release from custody on the grounds that his rights as an individual and as an officer of the state had been violated. In Ex parte Virginia, the United States Supreme Court ruled against Coles citing the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. It was one of a small number of civil rights victories during the period.

The clerk's office maintains records dating to the 1770s and also provides in-depth genealogical documents and records. 


Educational and Cultural Center, Pittsylvania County

39 Bank Street, Chatham, VA

The Center is available upon request. To learn more, please call 434-432-7887.
Pittsylvania County's Education and Cultural Center was a part of the County's 2020 COVID-19 response. The center allows expansive meeting space for both county and county school board meetings in addition to a literature multimedia laboratory and classroom. An earth science lab is on hand for local public school students.


simpson funeral museumSimpson Funeral Museum

16 South Main Street, Chatham, VA

Tours are available by appointment. To learn more, call 434-432-1085.

The Simpson Funeral Museum provides a historical view of burial practices, especially in how they bring dignity to the deceased, and closure for the living. The museum is filled with beautiful caskets, embalming tools, forgotten interment practices, and the current state of burial rites. It is an educational journey from the time of the Pharaohs to the present.

True replica caskets for President Kennedy (JFK), Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, and President Ronald Reagan are on display, as well as a selection of antique coffins, caskets, vaults, and an antique embalming room. A fumigator, designed to disinfect homes of infectious diseases, and two award winning hearses showcase.
The museum is located on the original site of Chatham’s first funeral home in the late 1800s. The museum is the passion of Chatham native Bill Simpson and his son, curator Scott Simpson. The Simpson Funeral Museum provides an eternal tribute to an eternal profession.
Admission to the Simpson Funeral Museum is free. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, donations are welcome.
Virginia history includes wine from its earliest beginnings. Captain John Smith observed grapes floating in the water upon his 1607 arrival in Jamestown. He quickly grasped the grape-growing potential of the region. Thomas Jefferson  encouraged his newly liberated countrymen to drink wine with meals and selected Virginia wines for the President's table. At the 1889 Paris World's Fair, a Virginia Claret was proclaimed "one of the World's best wines."
Virginia is the 5th U.S. state with the most wineries. It maintains well over 250. Pittsylvania County is adding to this rich wine making history with an expanding list of growers within the Chatham area.

Touring and Visiting Wineries

  • grape cluster winery highway signMany wineries are small, family-owned operations and may be closed for various reasons. It's always a good idea to call before visiting.
  • If visiting with a group of eight or more, please call ahead and schedule your group.
  • Grape cluster highway signs are posted within a ten-mile radius of each winery. Many of these signs are directional.


2 witches winery and brewing co2 Witches Winery and Brewing Co.

209 Trade Street, Danville, Virginia, 24541
The winery features scheduled events throughout the week, which are both private and public. It is generally open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Live music is often scheduled. Call or visit their website calendar to learn more.
2 Witches Winery and Brewing Co. is the first co-located winery and brewery in Virginia serving under one roof and one label.​ While the 2 Witches Vineyard is located in Pittsylvania County, the winery operates in the heart of Danville, Virginia. The winery is located approximately 25 minutes to Chatham’s south. 2 Witches wines include cabernet sauvignon, muscat blanc, petit verdot, and traminette. Apple trees are also maintained at the 2 Witches Vineyard.


altillo vineyards and wineryAltillo Vineyards and Winery

620 Level Run Road, Hurt, Virginia, 24563
Generally open on Saturdays, but please call before visiting.
Altillo Vineyards and Winery, formerly Altavista Vineyards and Winery, is located about 25 minutes north of Chatham. The family-run vineyard and winery specializes in a limited production of finely crafted wines. The winery specializes in custom crush, custom winemaking, and consulting to winery start-ups. Atillo wines include cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, merlot, shiraz, and viognier. Several of Altillo wines are medalists in the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition and the Virginia Governor’s Cup Competition.


homeplace vineyardThe Homeplace Vineyard

568 Rigney Circle, Chatham, Virginia, 24531
The tasting room is generally open 12:00pm to 5:00pm Thursday to Saturday. Flip Flop Friday events are hosted on the second Friday of each month from May to September. Flip Flop Fridays feature food, live music, and wine. Reservations are strongly encouraged.
Four generations of the Williams family have maintained their farm since 1912. Traditionally a tobacco farm, the family planted their first grapes, traminette, in March 2005. The family now tends approximately 5,600 vines on just over 9 acres. The winery includes a tasting room built from former tobacco barns, and an expansive event facility. The winery is located about 10 minutes outside Chatham near Climax. Homeplace wines include cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, chambourcin, traminette, vidal blanc, and viognier. Several Homeplace wines are medalists in the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition, Virginia Governor’s Cup Competition, and the Wines of the South Regional Wine Competition.


Chatham is a home for creators, innovators, leaders, and thinkers. Throughout its history, notable Chatham residents have made an impact in art, leadership, literature, music, and scholarship. They have an outsized footprint in collective achivement. All notable residents have a well defined connection to Chatham either by birth or residence. Many have advanced their areas of focus while living in or very near Chatham.

The Notable Residents list is not finite. Please contact the Town if you know an individual that meets the requirements to join this list, or if you have an update, correction, or additional information for the current entires.



Emerson, Claudia (1957-2014, birthplace), American poet. 2006 Pulitzer Prize winner for "Late Wife," a poetry collection. Named Poet Laureate of Virginia by Governor Tim Kaine in 2008. 2011 winner Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts, US & Canada.
Fitzgerald, Madalene Vaden, genealogist and historian. Published the booklet, Pittsylvania: Homes and People of the Past (1987). Collaborated with Frances Hallam Hurt for the booklet, Eighteenth Century Landmarks of Pittsylvania County, Virginia (1966).
Robert Prunty (1965 to present, birthplace), Head Football coach, Hampton University. Former Head Post-Graduate coach, Hargrave Military Academy (producing 27 NFL players). 2011, 2012 Scout.com Recruiter of the Year. Stints at East Carolina University, Texas Tech. Four Bowl apprenances.
Dr. Fillmore Hargrave Sanford (1914-1967, birthplace), University of Texas psychology professor. Authored Psychology for Naval Leaders (1949), Authoritarianism and Leadership (1950), and Psychology: A Scientific Study of Man (1961). American Board of Examiners in Professional Psychology past president.
Geyer, Vernon (1921-2001), geologist and sculptor. Known for sculpting mermaids, busts, animals, and children. Collections presented at the Danville Museum of Fine Arts, the Womack Museum, and the private collections of local supporters.  
Laura Hankins Adcock, jazz vocalist
Laura White Alderson, journalist, writer, poet, and publicist, of Raleigh, NC
Norman Amos, woodcarver
Frank Andrews, artist in leaded glass
Jesse Andrews, photographer
Beatrice Baldwin, artist
Laura Bradley, artist
Sara Hunt Briggs, artist
Ann Fox Casada, writer
Dr. Jim Casada, historian, outdoorsman, writer, columnist, and editor
Maud Carter Clement (1879-1969), historian and writer
Kimberly Ryan Clifton, writer and columnist
Joseph F. "Rick" Cline, historian and writer
Nancy Compton, artist
Dr. William B. Crawley, Jr., historian and writer
Carson Davenport, artist
Tim Davis, journalist, writer, editor
Arthur de Ponceau, poet
Elsabee Dixon, ceramic artist
Roger Dodson, historian and writer
Carolyn Thompson Dudley, art psychotherapist
Kaye Jackson Elliott, television and radio writer, producer, graphical artist, and on-screen personality
Ward Elliott, musician and master instrument maker
Bev Emerson, musician
Archer T. Gammon - Army Medal of Honor recipient
Jeff Guenther, artist
Barbara Hall, writer, producer, singer, and songwriter
Karen Hall, writer, producer
William T. Hathaway, naturalist and writer
Charles Hawkins, artist, sculptor, and Chatham's state senator
Dr. Jay Hayes, historian and writer
Wyatt C. Hedrick (1888-1964), architect
Wilson G. Hibble, artist
Chris Hughes, historian and author
Farida Hughes, artist (paintings and works on paper)
Frances Hallam Hurt, writer and dramatist
Henry Hurt, editor and writer
Cary James, architect and writer
Helen James, artist, illuminator, and quilter
Estelle Jefferson, artist
Langhorne Jones, Sr., jurist, historian and writer
Sue Kottwitz, jewelry designer
Kenyon McCann, writer and dramatist
Hugh D. McCormick (1903-1998), historian and writer
Dr. Edgar Melton, historian and writer
Herman Melton, historian and writer
Dr. James Melton, historian and writer
William Melton, filmmaker and administrator
Alice Meyer, artist
Joe Miller, artist and graphic designer
Bobby Mitchell - Professional golfer
Robin Lawrence Mildrum, artist
Henry H. Mitchell, editor, writer, and artist
Patricia B. Mitchell, food history writer
Preston B. Moses (1908-1996), editor, artist
Louise McCormick Motley, artist
Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986), artist
Lucille Mabel Walthall Payne, writer
Tom Royster, photographer
Jack Sanford - Baseball player (first baseman) and coach
R. Nevitt Sanford (1909-1995), psychologist, author
Paul Shelton (1915-1998), master saddlemaker
Ricky Van Shelton, musician and writer
Landon Spradlin, musician and evangelist
Mary Tallent, writer
Ann Taylor, newscaster
Mark Thomas, journalist, writer
Estes Thompson, journalist, editor
Gloria Hall Thompson, artist
L. J. Toler, journalist
Agnes Fulcher Tune, artist
Estelle Ironmonger Tyler, historian and writer
Michiel VanDerSommen, sculptor
Ellen Bryant Voigt, poet
Biff Watson, musician
Jim Watson, musician, and writer
Dr. Thomas L. Watson (1871-1924), geologist and writer
Christine Whitehead, artist and cancer therapist
Harriet Whitehead, research analyst, anthropologist, and writer
John Hurt Whitehead, photographer and writer
Mary Elizabeth Whitehead, musician
James Womack, master saddlemaker
Susan Worley, journalist, writer
Jerry Wyatt, actor, vocalist, and teacher/director/producer
Jonathan Yardley, writer, book critic, columnist
S. Dail Yeatts, educator, historian
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