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Meridian City

Bosque County, Texas

Meridian City Hall is located at 111 North Main Street, Meridian, TX 76665.
Phone: 254‑435‑6470.


Beginnings [1]

The name of Meridian was suggested by Jasper N. Mabray, most likely for the predominant local land features, Meridian Creek and Meridian Knobs. The town and these land features are all located close to the ninety-eighth meridian which touches the northwestern corner of the county.

A sale of town lots was held on July 4, 1854 and by the fall of that year William McCurry had built a one-room log courthouse. A square was set aside as the future location of a courthouse and businesses were being built around it. The log courthouse was used until 1859 when a three-room courthouse was built on the northeast corner of the square.

The first sermon preached in Meridian was in the log house built by J. N. Mabry in 1854. The first county post office in Meridian was established by Postmaster Joseph W. Smith in 1856. The first jail was a log structure built in winter of 1856-1857. During the Civil War the first newspaper was published.

With the onset of the Civil War a number of men from Bosque enlisted but most of them chose to serve in the Frontier Regiment which patrolled the west and northwest area. Times were hard on the people during the war and the subsequent period of military rule which lasted for ten years.

The three-room courthouse was destroyed by fire in 1871. The people built a room for the county and district clerks in 1872 but five years elapsed before a new courthouse was built. In 1875 a two story rock courthouse was built in the middle of the square.

The town continued to grow and had become the location of many businesses. In 1874 the town of Meridian was officially incorporated. In 1881 the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railroad was laid through Bosque County, coming within about one and one half miles (east) of the town. Even though it was inconvenient the town did not, like many others, move to the railroad.

The town and the county continued to grow and in 1886 the citizens voted to establish a mayor-council form of government for Meridian. In that year the citizens also voted to establish their own school district. Meridian College was also opened and continued until 1937 — from 1913-1927 operating as a junior college.

The present courthouse was built in 1886. It served as it was built until 1932 when, because of identified structural weaknesses, the clock tower and the cupolas were removed. The courthouse remained this way until 2004 when a grant application for a total restoration was approved.

One of the most significant early residents of Bosque County and of Meridian was John A. Lomax. Mr. Lomax came to Bosque County at the age of two (1869), grew up on the family farm, went to college then became a teacher. Always with a burning desire to improve himself, Mr. Lomax continued his education and in 1906 he had the opportunity to study American folklore. This inspired him and in 1907 he resurrected his childhood passion for collecting cowboy songs and ballads. In 1910 his first collection was published. He continued his collections and through his efforts he became a nationally known figure and preserved much of the cowboy culture. John Lomax's greatest achievement may have been the collection of more than ten thousand recordings for the Archive of American Folk Song at the Library of Congress.

  1. Meridian Economic Development Corporation, Community Profile, City of Meridian, Texas, 2011, www.meridiantxedc.org, accessed June, 2011.