Until 1880 Ferndale was known as Rum Corner because of a distillery which operated there. The name was changed to Ferndale when the post office was established. In 1880, Ferndale had numerous enterprises including wheelwright and blacksmith shops, several mining shoe factories, and a creamery. The Nockamixon Union Church, once located west of Ferndale, was organized in 1752. The first building to house the church was a log structure built in 1760. This original church, along with its graveyard, has completely disappeared. Presently, St. Luke's Evangelical Church and a large graveyard are located on a hill overlooking the village.
Ferndale still has several commercial uses, including a jeep dealership and a junk yard in the center of the village. There are some attractive, older homes in Ferndale ... A handsome stone inn is located on the edge of the village. Many newer single-family homes have been built in and around the village.