The Historical Museum of Antioch, managed and managed by the Historical Society of Antioch, has been part of the landscape of Antioch since the opening of the museum in the 1970s. Their mission, as stated on their website, is to “preserve, protect and present the history of Antioch”. Located in the old Riverview Union High School building from 1910, the museum is home to one of Antioch’s most comprehensive collections of antiques. A visit to the museum will be a warm reminder of the importance of Antioch to the development of the Eastern County and offers a myriad of ways to enjoy the space.
A history worth preserving
The history of Antioch is often overlooked in the development of the San Francisco Bay Area. However, the rich history has been what propelled much of the development throughout Contra Costa County, due to the ease and accessibility of the waters of the delta.
In 1850 Antioch was first settled by Captain Kimball, who also divided the city into blocks. The first real development of houses was completed on what we know today to be the historic corridor, encompassing Second Street, Third Street and F Street. The town itself was given the name of Antioch, by vote popular with residents.
Over the years, the riverside has been used as a means of transportation and communication. With the addition of the railway in 1870, many businesses in Antioch flourished. The earliest businesses included brick kilns, coal mines, copper smelters, a paper mill, and a distillery. Antioch was incorporated in 1872, which brought more organization, a fire department and a police department. The people of Antioch prospered.
What to expect
Like much of the history of small towns, stories disappear over time. However, thanks to the hard work of the guides, board and volunteers of the Historical Museum of Antioch, many of the stories that brought Antioch to life have been preserved.
The museum is divided into different exhibits which tell the stories of Antioch in a very interesting and engaging way. First, visitors can visit the Fire station, which is dedicated to Antioch Fire Department and shares the stories of all who have served in the fire department over the decades. the Delta Room is another interesting enclave of the museum that learns about the indigenous peoples of the Delta, explores the beginnings of Antioch industry, and also provides insight into the native wildlife of the region. the School hall is another popular exhibit that provides a glimpse into what schools in Antioch have looked like over the years and what students can expect. the Library room can contain most of the Antioch stories, as this exhibit houses books, reference materials, and all kinds of historical documents that truly detail the history of Antioch.
Other interesting exhibits include the McCoy Kitchen House, the main entrance of the Delta King, the military room, the room of the town hall, the room of the ladies, the room of the bride and a room of the children. A saloon exhibit, a family room, a sports legends exhibit, the Beede Hall, the lower level theater are all exhibits that will not only spark your interest, but detail the lives of the people who founded the wonderful city of ‘Antioch through first-hand artefacts.
How to enjoy the museum
There are many ways to enjoy the Antioch Historical Museum. First, plan a visit. The museum is open Wednesday and Saturday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.. School trips are an option for educators. In addition, the Historical Society of Antioch organizes events at the museum throughout the year. Some of the most popular events include a car show and a murder mystery dinner! The museum is also available for booking for your own event!
Support the Historical Museum of Antioch
Just as there are many ways to enjoy the museum, there are also many ways to support the Antioch Historical Museum and the Antioch Historical Society. First of all, visit the museum! Another great way to show your support is to become a member of the Antioch Historical Society. You can also volunteer or sit on the board to help the museum continue to grow and prosper. To learn more about the Historical Museum of Antioch or how you can get involved, visit their website or call 925-757-1326 today.
Location: 1500 W. Fourth Street
Antioch, California, 94509