The club was founded in 1888 as Walsall Town Swifts, an amalgamation of Walsall Town F.C. and Walsall Swifts F.C. The club was one of the founder members of the Second Division in 1892, but have spent their entire existence outside English football's top division; their highest league finish was fourteenth in Division Two in 1961–62. Their first match at Wembley Stadium was the 2015 Football League Trophy Final, which they lost to Bristol City.
Walsall moved into their Bescot Stadium in 1990, having previously played at nearby Fellows Park for almost a century. The team play in a red and white kit and their club crest features a swift. The club's nickname, "The Saddlers", reflects Walsall's status as a traditional centre for saddle manufacture.