Prior to becoming Marcus, a settlement was established as the territorial capital in 1824.
Marcus was named for Marcus Oppenheimer who settled in the area in 1863.
Marcus was a supply and transportation base for northward-bound travellers during the Big Bend Gold Rush of the 1860s in the Colony of British Columbia due to its location just above Kettle Falls, a wall to river navigation. In 1865 the steamboat Forty-Nine was built at Marcus to attempt the run to the goldrush boomtown of La Porte at the foot of the infamous Dalles des Morts or "Death Rapids", which were located in the immediate vicinity of the rush and were the upper barrier to river navigation. Regular service from Marcus to La Porte did not begin until 1866 due to difficult winter conditions at the Narrows of the Arrow Lakes on the first attempt in 1865.
Marcus was officially incorporated on October 18, 1910.
In 2010 at the Marcus Cider Fest event, the town celebrated it's 100th birthday as an incorporated town.