Mornington shire (1871-1994), situated about 45 km south of Melbourne, faced the eastern side of Port Phillip Bay. Its coastline extended from Canadian Bay, Frankston, to Martha Point near Safety Beach. Its area was 91 sq km.
The first local government body in the Mornington district was the Mount Eliza road board (1860) with jurisdiction over an area that included the future municipalities of Frankston and Hastings. Mount Eliza is a prominent rise near Canadian Bay. On 24 November 1871 the road district was changed to Mornington shire.