First settled in 1872, Ferndale was given its name because of the ferns that once grew around the original school house. Ferndale was originally called Jam because the town was located next to a log jam on the Nooksack River. The original schoolteacher decided it needed a more picturesque name. Ferndale was officially incorporated on March 19, 1907.
Ferndale is located at 48°50?48?N 122°35?23?W / 48.84667°N 122.58972°W / 48.84667; -122.58972 (48.846670, -122.589720).