Campbelltown was so named by Lachlan Macquarie, who was the fifth Governor of New South Wales from 1810 to 1821. He was really the first governor to see Australia as a country, rather than a penal settlement. He officially gave the country its name and on his tomb in Scotland the inscription reads, ‘The Father of Australia’.
Under Macquarie’s watch a lot of good things happened – many of Sydney’s fine buildings were erected (the aptly named Macquarie Street has many of them), he was responsible for the crossing of the Blue Mountains and other exploration – Port Macquarie is also named after him – as is Macquarie River and Lachlan River plus many more places, ports, islands and landmarks. For example, near Campbelltown, there is also a suburb called Macquarie Fields.
And what did he have to do with the naming of Campbelltown?
Well, he knew how to keep the little lady happy on the home front. His second wife, Elizabeth, saw her name appear on things, too. There’s Elizabeth Street in Sydney (runs parallel with Macquarie Street for a bit)… there’s also Elizabeth Street in Hobart, Elizabeth Bay in Sydney Harbour and Mrs Macquarie’s Chair (near the Opera House, on Mrs Macquarie’s Point, at the end of Mrs Macquarie’s Road). The NSW town of Appin takes its name from the Scottish town of Appin where Elizabeth was born, the Sydney suburb of Airds takes its name from Elizabeth’s Scottish family estate and she got a whole town after her maiden name of Campbell. So there you go…