A small gold discovery was made in 1852. The small settlement on the Narracan Creek was a stopover en route to the Walhalla goldfields further north. A Post Office opened on 17 March 1862.
In 1878 the Shire of Narracan was proclaimed, and the railway arrived from Morwell. Moe railway station was a key station, with a roundhouse, and connections to the now-closed Walhalla, Thorpdale, and Yallourn lines. The town was surveyed in 1879. Moe was declared a city in 1963.
A major local industry is based around the brown coal deposits in the Latrobe Valley east of Moe and electricity generation. The area is also noted for its dairy industry.
Moe High School opened in 1953, with the Official opening in November of the same year.. The school was closed and merged into Lowanna Secondary College in 1994, with the previous Moe High School location becoming a housing estate.
On the night of the 2011 census there were 15,292 residing in the Moe urban centre; 51.7% female and 48.3% male. At the time Moe had an indigenous (Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander) population of 1.4%, whilst 79.8% of the overall population were born in Australia. The other main countries of origin were: England (4%), Netherlands (1.5%), Scotland (1.2%), Germany (1.1%) and Malta (1.1%).
Moe Railway Precinct Revitalisation Project: A clock tower was constructed in 2012 incorporating two bronze clocks that chime on the hour. The clocks were manufactured in Moe by local clockmaker Alan Cox. Electricity supply lines on George Street (one of Moe's main streets that intersects with Moore Street from Saviges Road to Anzac Road) have recently been placed underground at a cost of over $2 million. The undergrounding included the installation of new street lighting and two 66KV distribution boxes which will be used to place the remaining supply lines in the CBD underground in the future.
Moe currently has three large urban housing developments underway or in final planning.
Mitchell Grove (off Mitchells Road) is a 2 kilometre walk west of the CBD of Moe and has two residential housing stages on sale now (Mitchell Grove Stage 1 & Mitchell Views) next to a newly completed artificial wetland. The first entrance street to the new development has been named Discovery Boulevarde. Mitchells Grove development is likely to exceed 1,000 residences.
Monash Views is a 221 lot development in final implementation off Monash Road and Coach road in the suburb of Newborough approximately 5 kilometres from the Moe CBD. The development plan includes a partial redevelopment of the Yallourn Golf Club which borders the estate to the north by Ogilvy-Clayton. The final size of Monash Views development through to Haunted Hills Road may exceed 1,000 residences.
Another large scale development is in final planning stage near Lake Narracan, a few kilometers from the Moe CBD. The development will be bordered by Thompsons Road, Moe Golf Club, Hayes Road and the south shore of Lake Narracan - then extending to Becks Bridge Road to the west. The first developed section is in an area planned to have around 1,000 homes - of a total of approximately 4,000.
Moe is serviced by a number of primary schools including:Moe (Albert Street) Primary School
Moe (South Street) Primary School
Moe (Elizabeth street) Primary School
St Kieran's Primary School (Catholic)
Barringa Special School (Day Special School)
St Mary's Primary School (Catholic)
Newborough Primary (Murray Road)
Newborough East Primary
Moe is also serviced by two secondary colleges:Lowanna Secondary College, a single campus year 7–12 state secondary college located in nearby Newborough, and
Lavalla Catholic College, a multi campus Catholic secondary college with its year 7–9 Presentation campus located in Newborough.
Tertiary education is offered through GippsTAFE (Yallourn, Warragul, Leongatha, Morwell). Federation University also has its Gippsland campus at nearby Churchill.
The economy is primarily driven by primary industry, natural resources and secondary industry including coal mining, processing and fossil-fuel power generation for the National Electricity Market.
The local agriculture industry is involved in the production of wool and dairy products, as well as vegetable growing.
Moe has a varied and wide range of sporting facilities available for use.
Australian Football & Cricket
Ted Summerton Reserve in the west end of Vale Street, Moe is used for Australian Football and Cricket and is a short walk south along Fowler Street to Vale Street (approximately 900 metres) from the Moe V/line train station and CBD. The reserve is undergoing development and has recently had an upgrading of its facilities including an upgrade to the players facilities, preparation of the surrounds of the playing surface for spectator stands to be constructed, spectator terracing, new South Street entrance gate, upgraded scoreboard, and the development of a shared community facility called Moe P.L.A.C.E on the property borderline between the reserve and the adjacent South Street Primary School, far enough back from the eastern wing of the playing surface for a future spectator stand.
The Moe P.L.A.C.E. facility is accessible from both Summerton Reserve and South Street Primary School and was completed in 2011. The facility is part of the Moe Southside Community Precinct and includes a sports hall with side music room and stage at its northern end, community facilities and an Early Learning Centre at its southern end. The development is part of the Moe Southside Precinct development. Moe has an Australian Rules Football team competing in the Gippsland League, the Moe Lions, whose home ground is Summerton Reserve. The reserve is owned by government, administered by Latrobe City Council and has a permanently elliptical surface.
Olympic Park in Moe is located next to the outdoor pool at the east end of Vale Street and is used for soccer. It has two rectangular pitches, one north-south and one east-west. It is the home ground for Moe United Soccer Club who compete in the Gippsland Soccer League. A new community sports building is on the east side at Olympic Park. The reserve is owned by government, administered by Latrobe City Council.
The Olympic Pool in Moe is at the east end of Vale Street next to the Olympic Park Reserve. The Moe Outdoor Pool features a 50m Pool, Children's Pool, Diving Pool, Kiosk & Electric BBQs, Beach Volleyball Court, Change Facilities, Ample grass & shade shelters. The pool has recently undergone a multimillion-dollar upgrade. It boasts a separate diving pool, a 50-metre pool and a newly constructed children's pool with an interactive splashpad.
The reconstruction works were carried out by local businesses and administered by Latrobe City Council.
The local leisure centre consists of a 25-metre, 6-lane indoor heated pool, a unisex spa at one end of the complex and sauna at the other, gymnasium with both electronic and state-of-the-art pin-loaded equipment (including rowers, treadmills, exercise bikes and steppers), squash court, 400 m all-weather athletics track and grass field with asphalt cycling track around the perimeter, night lighting for the athletics track and indoor sports halls featuring four full-sized indoor basketball courts that are utilised by local basketball, netball, volleyball and badminton associations. The complex also has ample parkland around it and the Newborough Football Ground is also adjacent to the complex.
Lake Narracan is located immediately to the north of Moe. Lake Narracan is increasingly being used for recreational purposes, including water-skiing, jet skiing and recreational fishing and has a small caravan park and water-ski club.
There are two golf course, the Moe Golf Club on Thompsons Road, Newborough and the Yallourn Golf Club in Monash Road, Newborough.
Moe has a horse racing club, the Moe Racing Club, which schedules around fifteen race meetings a year including the Moe Cup meeting in October. The racecourse is in Waterloo Road within walking distance of the centre of Moe.
Yallourn Bowling Club is on the corner of Monash Road and Coach Road in Newborough and is host of the TRUenergy Classic Singles tournament.
Moe Bowling Club is on the corner of Saviges Road and Waterloo Road in Moe, a very short walk from the Moe Train Station & CBD.
Moe Tennis Club is on Botanic Drive in the Moe Botanic Gardens a short distance from the Moe CBD. The facility features 15 outdoor synpave courts with 7 under lights for night tennis and a club house. The club is affiliated with Latrobe Valley Tennis Association Junior Competition and Loy Yang Yinnar & District Association Senior Competition.
A short distance away (over the Moe-Yallourn Rail Trail to the North of the Botanic Gardens) is the Latrobe Indoor Tennis Centre in Haigh Street, Moe featuring five indoor courts.
Nearby Mount Baw Baw and Mount St Gwinear are popular destinations for snow sports, with Mount Baw Baw having a small ski resort and Mount St Gwinear used for cross country skiing.
V/Line runs a passenger rail service to Moe station as part of the Traralgon and Gippsland V/Line rail services which runs to Melbourne's major stations Southern Cross Station and Flinders Street Station. Currently services that run to the Latrobe Valley are listed as Traralgon services. Moe is approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes from the CBD of Melbourne by train. The V/Line rail line to the Latrobe Valley has recently been upgraded by the State Government of Victoria for fast rail, future express services from Melbournes CBD to the Latrobe Valley could cut the travel time to Moe to 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Latrobe Valley Buslines provides local services around Moe and other cities in the Latrobe Valley.
Moe is an approximate hour and forty minutes from the centre of Melbourne via the Princes Freeway.
Latrobe Valley Airport is approximately a twenty-minute drive.
Moe is serviced by the Latrobe Valley Express newspaper, which used to include a weekly insert called the Moe Narracan News. The Latrobe Valley Express is delivered free to residences in the Latrobe Valley region and has a current circulation of approximately 34,128 (CAB). The Warragul & Drouin Gazette is also available for purchase.
Warragul commercial radio stations Star FM and 3GG service this region along with all five ABC radio networks and several community and narrowcast stations.
Commercial Melbourne based television networks such as the Seven, Nine and Ten networks are all re-broadcast in the Latrobe Valley by their regional affiliates, which are Prime7, WIN Television and Southern Cross Ten respectively. All three channels have local commercials placed on their broadcasts and WIN TV also broadcasts a local news bulletin from Monday to Friday at 6.30pm.
New channels broadcast by the commercial networks in addition to the ones listed above are available on the digital service called Freeview (Australia) to viewers in Moe and the Gippsland Latrobe Valley region. These channels include One HD, Eleven, 7Two, 7mate, GEM and GO!.
Most Melbourne channels (Seven Network, Channel Nine, Channel Ten) digital in Moe with a suitable roof-top antenna. Both national public broadcasters, Australian Broadcasting Corporation including channels ABC1, ABC2, ABC3, ABC News 24 and Special Broadcasting Service including SBS One and SBS Two, are broadcast to the Latrobe Valley from the TV tower at Mount Tassie, as well as from the Dandenong Ranges transmitters located east of Melbourne.Jason Bright (V8 Supercars Driver)
Ted Hopkins (VFL Player, member of Carlton's 1970 premiership team)
Troy Makepeace (AFL Player)
Barry Rowlings (VFL Player, premiership winner with Hawthorn in 1976 and Richmond in 1980)
John Somerville (VFL Player, member of Essendon's 1962 premiership team)
Peter Somerville (AFL Player, member of Essendon's 1993 premiership team)
Peter Dunkley (Emeritus Professor School of Biomedical Sciences and Pharmacy, Faculty of Health and Medicine, University of Newcastle, NSW)