Rock Springs, also known as the Colony, is located on Farm Road 1637 in south central Bosque County near the McLennancounty line. It was founded by James B. Sadler, a former slave from Tennessee who was brought to Bosque County shortly after the Civil War. A self-educated teacher and preacher, he founded a church, a school, and a lodge on part of the 545 acres he purchased in 1878. The church, erected in 1890, was the focal point of one of the first free African-American communities in the state. The church was originally a one-room structure, thirty by twenty-one feet, overlooking a spring which runs through the Sadler property. It had a steeple with a huge bell that could be heard throughout the area. In the late 1980s the church still stood in its original form, except that it had lost its steeple, and a choir room had been added. A cemetery located near the church contained the graves of many of the founding pioneers of the Rock Springs settlement. An annual homecoming, organized in 1950, was celebrated on each first Sunday in November. At this celebration, funds were provided for the continual upkeep of the church property and cemetery. The church was the only structure in the community listed on maps in the late 1980s. The Colony was the only African-American community in Bosque County.
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