The first actual settler on the site of Wakefield was James Gilbert, who came in 1858. The town site for Wakefield was selected and laid out by Rev. Richard Wake, John Wormald, Alexander Maitland and Col. Loomis on August 26, 1869. The colonel named the town Wakefield, partly in honor of Rev. Richard Wake and partly because Wakefield, England was the former home of John Wormald.