Antioch Colony was a rural farming community formed during Reconstruction by a group of formerly enslaved African Americans. Although freed from slavery after the Civil War, African Americans still found it difficult to purchase land. In 1859, Anglo businessman Joseph F. Rowley purchased 490 acres in north Hays County, along Onion Creek. He began selling parcels to former slaves in 1870 at $5.00 per acre. Rowley, perhaps in an effort to protect the new landowners from losing their property, indicated in many of the deeds that the African American owners could not sell the property without Rowley's consent. After moving to Missouri, Rowley rescinded the stipulation in 1893, but the document was not filed in Hays County until 1913.
Community residents Elias and Clarisa Bunton donated property for a community school and church in 1874, and the building served as the school until 1939. The following year, the school was relocated to Black Colony Road and served Antioch until students were integrated into the Buda school system in 1961. A Baptist church and a Methodist church were organized in the community, and there was also an active Masonic Lodge and Order of the Eastern Star chapter in Antioch.
Antioch remained an active farm community through the 1930s and 1940s. By the 1950s, many residents had moved away in search of better employment opportunities and the community was virtually abandoned. Beginning in the 1970s former residents and their descendants began returning to Antioch, some purchasing the land that their ancestors had previously owned, and the community continues to grow.