Meredith is a township by the Coolebarghurk Creek, north-west of Geelong. It was named after Charles Meredith, who came from Tasmania.
The Native Creek No 1 run was taken up in 1837 by the Learmonth brothers from England. The run was located about about 4km south of the future town of Meredith. By 1840 another pair of Englishmen had taken over the run, Robert and Joseph Sutherland. Their partnership was dissolved as of 8 February 1844 when Robert took full control of the Native Creek No 1 run and held it until 1864 when it appears to have been absorbed into Moranghurk (a property north of Native Creek on the other side of the road) and the homestead used as Moranghurk's manager's residence.
Meanwhile, Durdiwarrah pastoral station near Meredith was licensed to Irish immigrant Charles Augustus Von Stieglitz in 1842. He built the first substantial homestead of brick and stone prior to 1854, which later became the Eclipse Hotel and then Darra Homestead. W.T.N. Champ, former Premier of Tasmania, acquired the homestead in 1863. The name Steiglitz was used for the major goldmining centre from 1853 until the early 1900s, located 10km north-west of Anakie on the road to Meredith.
About eight km west of the future Meredith, Brothers Alexander and John Wilson took up the Woodbourne No 2 Pastoral Run in 1844 and built a six-room homestead of pit sawn timber slabs with hip and gable shingle-clad roof. A rubble bluestone addition with slate roof was made by new owner William Reid prior to 1860 and a verandah added.
The gold rushes brought new impetus to the district. A road to the Buninyong goldfields and Ballarat was built through Meredith in 1853. Prospectors, gold, mail and supplies travelled through the small township.
On 10 April 1862 the Ballarat-Geelong railway line opened. Meredith's new station was a finely proportioned and detailed Italianate composition with a distinctive timber verandah. Firewood and wool accounted for the majority of the tonnage consigned by rail.
In 1878 a new Meredith Shire Hall was erected by Thomas Nuttall. Prolific Geelong architects Alexander Davidson and Company designed this single storey, squared, basalt structure with prominent central gabled portico, segmental arched arcade and Corinthian columns.
Meredith was downgraded from town to township by the 1930s.
Today the small township of Meredith is supported by local industries including wool production, dairying and poultry farming.
Blake, L. (1977). Place Names of Victoria.
Australian Heritage Commission website http://www.ahc.gov.au
Parish of Meredith website http://www.parishofmeredith.org.au/meredith_history.htm