Meringandan is a rural town 15 km north of central Toowoomba. The name is believed to derive from an Aboriginal expression describing fire clay or red soil.
Meringandan was part of the Gowrie pastoral station (taken up 1841), but came under closer-settlement in the 1870s. Many of the settlers were of German extraction. A school was opened in 1876, and about this time Lutheran, Anglican and Congregational churches were built.
The railway line from Toowoomba to Crows Nest via Meringandan was opened in 1883, and the town developed as a district centre. The post office directory (1904) recorded three stores, the Ellendean, Criterion and Farmers Arms Hotels, a butcher, a baker and a blacksmith, along with 70 farmers. Several carpenters were also in trade. The town's prosperity suffered a setback when another northern line was built in 1910 for Goombungee and Haden, running more efficiently than the steeply-graded Crows Nest line. (The Crows Nest line was closed in 1961, and Meringandan's railway station and yards are now a park)
Most farming around Meringandan was dairying, which contracted during the 1970s-90s. Like other settlements on Toowoomba's fringe, the town has experienced substantial growth in recent years as a consequence of urban expansion and residential subdivision development, with residents commuting to Toowoomba for work.
Meringandan has a hotel, a general store, a produce store and a school. The main recreational venue is the Cooby Creek dam, north of the town, which is Toowoomba's principal water supply.
Meringandan's census populations have been:
From tall timbers: a folk history of Crows Nest Shire 1988, Crows Nest, Crows Nest & District Tourist & Progress Association, 1988