Wheelock was chartered on June 14, 1785 to John Wheelock and the trustees of Dartmouth College in Hanover, N.H. The town was named for Wheelock, who was the college’s second president, as well as his father Eleazar Wheelock, the college's founder. Until the late 1800s, Dartmouth received a large percentage of its permanent funding from money paid by the Wheelock residents who rented their property from the trustees. As a result of the Dartmouth connections, qualifying residents of Wheelock can attend the college for free.
Wheelock is the only Vermont town to be chartered to an organization that is located completely out of the state. This historical little town is situated alongside Millers Run stream, which empties into the Passumpsic River. The general surface of the town is uneven.
One range of the Green Mountains runs through the west part of the town, and roads cross the summits in several places. The land upon the mountains is well timbered and susceptible to cultivation. The eastern part of town is more level and good for farming.
In 1796, the town voted to build its first meeting house. It was a large, two story edifice, and, like others of its kind, was never finished. Two mineral springs in town were reputed to have medicinal value. Historically, large quantities of hay, oats, and lumber were transported from Wheelock to Lyndon and St. Johnsbury, and large quantities of maple syrup were also manufactured here.
The village is located along Millers Run while much of the rest of the town is located along the South Wheelock branch of the Passumpsic River. Chandler Pond and Flagg Pond lie on the eastern and western sides of the town, respectively. The town is heavily wooded with several dirt roads and surrounded by the towns of Sutton, Sheffield, Greensboro, Walden, Danville and Lyndon.