Wellington was first settled in March of 1818 by Ephraim Wilcox, Charles Sweet, William T. Welling, John Clifford, and Joseph Wilson. They came from Massachusetts and New York states. The township was officially organized in 1821. The name was to be selected using the traditional method of the time. There was a tree chopping contest and whoever cut down the most trees was the winner and won the right to name the settlement. Charles Sweet was the winner of the contest and named the township Charlemont. This name was unacceptable to many settlers and Charlemont was renamed Wellington. This name had a dual purpose: it allowed the honor of one of the original settlers and showed the people's admiration of the "Iron Duke," the Duke of Wellington.
The Village of Wellington was incorporated on August 6, 1855. The charter election was held December 3rd and resulted in the election of John Swift as the village's first mayor. The first regular election was held in April 1856 and Edward Tripp was elected mayor.