Chatham is home to Chatham High School and Hargrave Military Academy, the country's top rated military preparatory boarding school, which includes a special Colin Powell leadership program. . It is also home to Chatham Hall (Official site), an all-female boarding high school. It is the county seat of Pittsylvania County.
Chatham did not see any battle action during the Civil War although it is between Richmond, the capital of the Confederacy, and Danville, which contained Confederate prisons for captured Union soldiers. On Confederate Memorial Day each year, the local chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy places flowers at the statue of a Confederate soldier which is prominent in the front of the historic Pittsylvania County Court House. There is a walking tour of this downtown historic district and a brochure for this is available at the Town Hall, or at the Historical Society building next to Town Hall. There are several bed & breakfast establishments located on Main Street in historic Greek Revival homes.