Our History

 

Thank you for visiting our website!  We are excited to share with you all that Meridian's history has to offer!  We would encourage you to come by Meridian City Hall and visit the History Center or pick-up a brochure to take our Historic Walking Tour.  To learn more about that tour please see the links to the left or click on the icon below. 

For an enhanced Historic Meridian Downtown Walking Tour experience, download our mobile app for iPhone or Android to enjoy additional photos, videos and narratives about each property while you walk.

 

 Walking Tour

 

 The original Meridian town site was filed in 1893 on homestead grant land belonging to Eliza Ann Zenger. Her husband, Christian, filed the plat with county officials and called it Meridian. While the Zengers moved from Utah, many other early settlers left their homes in Missouri to come west.  They either traveled by wagon or immigrant railroad car, bringing their lodge and church preferences with them. They established local institutions soon after arriving and filed for homestead lands. In other words, they brought their community with them. Meridian was incorporated as a village in 1903 with a population of approximately 200 and a bustling business center.   

  
 A creamery was built in 1897, and other dairy-related businesses followed, as Meridian established itself as a dairy center for the state. This part of the communitys history is still celebrated annually during Meridian Dairy Days in June. Dairy Days has been observed in one form or another since 1929. 
  
 Around the turn of the century, settlers established fruit orchards and built fruit packing businesses and prune dryers along the railroad tracks. Local orchards produced many varieties of apples and Italian prunes. Production continued through the mid-1940s, when it was no longer profitable and the businesses closed. In 1941, Meridians status changed from a village to a city.  

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Thank you to our Meridian History Center, Historical Society, and Historian Lila Hill for the tireless efforts, countless hours, and effort spent on cataloging our history. Without their time, commitment, and dedication this tour would be unavailable to our residents. The History Center is located in Meridian City Hall and is open Monday through Friday from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Please come by to view these photos or other artifacts in person.