The City of Bendigo in Victoria Australia is 90 miles northwest of Melbourne.
We have read various theories about how the name Bendigo made its way there. We have now discovered the truth about the matter.
Bendigo Creek was founded as a sheep run in 1840. Then gold was discovered in 1851 which brought rapid growth to the area. This created the impressive city that still stands today, with fine examples of Victorian architecture and tree-lined streets. Gold mining ceased in 1955.
Bendigo became a city in 1871, although the official name was Sandhurst until 1891. A poll of the residents decided to revert to the original name of Bendigo, to ‘honour a local prize-fighter who compared his own prowess to that of the famous English pugilist known as Bendigo’. The name of this prize-fighter was unknown in most historical text.
The National Library of Australia holds two watercolour paintings of Macpherson’s Store in Bendigo.
The modern location in Bendigo is now called Charing Cross.
They were created in 1853 and show Bendigo Creek at the time of the early gold rush.
On the 21st April 1878 the Australian Town and Country Journal published an article titled:
ORIGIN OF THE NAME ‘BENDIGO’
The origin of the name ‘Bendigo’ has, time after time, led to much controversy. Now the origin of the name is thus accounted for.
On this quotation says the Independent we have been shown an extract from a letter to Dr Pounds from Mr Grice which should put the matter at rest.
Mr Grice writes:
“Tell your friends who want to know the origin of Bendigo, that it was named by Tom Myers, Heap and Grice’s overseer in 1841. Tom himself was a bit of a dab with his fists and a great admirer of the boxer Bendigo: hence the name.”
From ‘Tom Myers’, those well known localities ‘Myers Flat’ and ‘Myers Creek’ take their name.
Image of the actual article in the Australian Town and Country Journal of 1878
Thanks to Google for the image of Bendigo with Myers Street standing proud.
‘Bendigo Creek’ in August 1852, painted by the artist S.T. Gill.