Originally known as Indian Village, Romeo was platted in 1830 on the former winter campgrounds of a band of Chippewa Indians. Nathaniel Taylor, Ashael Bailey, and a Major Larned laid out the village, which was incorporated in 1838. Named Romeo by Taylor's wife, Laura, the village became an agricultural and mercantile center. Many of its early settlers were from New England and upstate New York. In 1835 the Romeo Academy was established, and in the 1840s the Romeo Branch of the University of Michigan
opened in the village. The many examples of nineteenth-century architecture that remain in the village led Michigan and the federal government to list Romeo as a historic district in 1970.