The first settlers in the area were freed Negro slaves who formed the Pierpoint Settlement, named after Richard Pierpoint. Pierpoint was a native of Bondon, Africa. Richard Pierpoint was one the first recorded United Empire Loyalists in Upper Canada.
The settlement of "Little Falls" was founded in 1833, by the Hon. Adam Ferguson and Mr. James Webster. The pair of Ferguson and Webster purchased 7000 acres of land in the township of Nichol, and later renamed the settlement to "The Village of Fergus" Ferguson was not only a founder of Fergus but, also the founder the Agricultural Board of Ontario, and served as president of the Agricultural Association of Upper Canada. Ferguson was also "Chair of Agriculture" at the University of Toronto, and was later elected to the Executive Council of Upper Canada.
Webster was the key member in the development of Fergus. Bringing the Fergus Mills and the actual clearing of farmland. Alexander Dingwall Fordyce joined the Webster-Ferguson partnership. The three controlled all industry in Fergus until 1855. By 1858 Fergus was incorporated as the "Village of Fergus".