Fellows of Senate
The Hon Francis Lewis Shaw Merewether
The Hon Francis Lewis Shaw Merewether was a Fellow of Senate of the University of Sydney from 1850 to 1875. During this period, he was Vice-Chancellor (Vice-Provost) from 1854 to 1862 and Chancellor from 1862 to 1865.
(1811 – 1899)
Fellow of Senate 1850 - 1875, including election by Senate as
Vice-Chancellor (Vice-Provost) 1854 - 1862
Chancellor 1862 - 1865
His early years
Francis Lewis Shaw Merewether, the son of a clergyman, arrived from England in New South Wales in 1838.
He rapidly secured promotion in the government service, first as Immigrant Agent, then as Acting Colonial Treasurer (1841), Deputy Registrar of the Supreme Court at Port Phillip, Clerk of the Councils (1842-51), Postmaster General and member of the Executive Council. He was an Alderman on Sydney’s first Town Council.
His membership of Senate
Merewether was instrumental in the establishment of the University and successfully proposed that the 180-acre Gross Farm be accepted as the alternative site to the inadequate Sydney College. He was a member of the founding Senate of the University. He was elected the second Vice-Provost* in 1854, a position he held until he was elected Chancellor in 1862. As a member of the original Building Committee of the University, he won approval for the construction of the buildings designed by Edmund Blacket.
* Title changed to Vice-Chancellor in 1860
The biographical notes on the Chancellors contain information derived from a variety of sources including: Australia’s First: A History of the University of Sydney; University News; University of Sydney Archives; Lawlink NSW: Law and History