Milton was chartered by Governor Benning Wentworth of New Hampshire on June 8, 1763. In February 1782, the town was first settled by William Irish, Leonard Owen, Amos Mansfield, Absalom Taylor, and Thomas Dewey. There were approximately 300 settlers living in Milton by 1795. It was necessary to build a new meeting place, as meeting in private homes would no longer suffice. The Town House was built in 1849. In 1878, it was destroyed by a fire. Early settlers in Milton made most of their income from lumber and potash until 1840 when dairy became popular and butter and cheese were sold. Eventually, milk was also shipped to Boston and New York. Milton was home of the Catamount Speedway, which operated until 1988. Many racers who have gone through there went on to NASCAR fame, including Shelburne native Kevin Lepage.
Milton is located in northern Chittenden County, bordered by Franklin County to the north and Grand Isle County to the northwest, across an arm of Lake Champlain. The town includes the community of Milton in the east, as well as the communities of Cozy Corner, West View, Checkerberry Village, and West Milton from east to west across the center of the town. The Lamoille River flows from northeast to southwest across the town, entering Lake Champlain at the town's southwest corner. U.S. Route 2 crosses the east arm of Lake Champlain to Grand Isle from Sand Point, just north of the Lamoille River delta. Sand Bar State Park is located along Route 2.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town of Milton has a total area of 60.9 square miles (157.7 km2), of which 51.4 square miles (133.1 km2) is land and 9.5 square miles (24.6 km2), or 15.62%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 9,479 people, 3,333 households, and 2,609 families residing in the town. The population density was 184.2 people per square mile (71.1/km2). There were 3,505 housing units at an average density of 68.1 per square mile (26.3/km2). There were 3,333 households. Of these, 41.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.7% were non-families. 15.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.84 and the average family size was 3.17.
In the town, the population was spread out with 28.7% under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 35.8% from 25 to 44, 22.6% from 45 to 64, and 5.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 100.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.8 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $49,379, and the median income for a family was $50,972. Males had a median income of $36,149 versus $27,256 for females. The per capita income for the town was $20,048. About 4.2% of families and 5.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.0% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.
In March 2013, a group of students and teachers from the elementary school were invited to the White House to join First Lady Michelle Obama in planting the kitchen garden in early April. This was, in part, related to the initiatives the school food service director Steve Marinelli implemented that support Let's Move!, as well as his blog.
The Theatre Company produces a musical in the fall and a one-act play in the spring. The one-act is presented at the regional level. Milton's has been chosen to advance to the state level multiple times where it then competes to be selected as one of two schools to represent Vermont at the New England Drama Festival showcase. Milton has done so in 2002 (The Drowned and the Saved), 2004 (Women and Wallace), 2011 (MacBeth), 2012 (A Midsummer Night's Dream), 2014 (Oedipus Rex), and 2015 (Beowulf).
Milton hosted the New England Drama Festival in 2003.
In 2016, Milton seniors won first (Meredith Holbrook) and third (Ryan Racicot) place in U.S. SenatorBernie Sanders' annual State of the Union essay contest. Two other Milton seniors (Megan Bromley and Sara Manfredi) were top twenty finalists. Essays of the winners and finalists will be entered into the Congressional Record.