Judah Church and Moses “Samuel” Munson first settled the village in the early 1820s. Munson went on to build a sawmill in the town in 1825 and planted the first orchard shortly after. The actions of these men would sprout the roots to what is now known as the Village of Lake Orion.
Jesse Decker was another original pioneer, arriving from upstate New York with his wife in 1825. Decker proved to be energetic and became “everything to everybody”, so that the place soon became known as “Decker’s Settlement”, and the town was called “Canandaigua”, after Canandaigua, New York, where the settlers originated. In 1828, a power dam was built uniting several small lakes and forming the mile wide Lake Canandaigua, just west of the village. In 1830, Jesse Decker raised the first frame barn in the area with the help of local Indians. The settlement grew into a bustling commercial center with a sawmill, tavern, post office, general store, blacksmith shop, school and cemetery.
In 1835, the community’s name was changed from Canandaigua to Orion, and as a result, Lake Canandaigua would be renamed Lake Orion. That same year, the Michigan Territorial government formally approved the Township of Orion. Jesse Decker became the first Supervisor of Orion. After that, Decker was elected to the first Michigan House of Representatives in 1837 and also served as justice of the peace for the Orion area.