Collinsville was part of the Montezuma Township when purchased by C. J. Collins around 1859. S. C. Bradshaw later purchased the land and renamed it Newport. He tried to sell pieces of the land to people on the East Coast telling them that it was going to be a big railroad town. The land was later sold to E. I. Upham who returned the name Collinsville back to the town.
At one point, one of the passenger railroad lines between Sacramento and San Francisco passed through Collinsville (before the bridges were built). The train would unbuckle at Collinsville, and be pulled across the Delta by barge (requiring several trips), and then be rebuckled together on the other side, and resume its trip to San Francisco.
On July 4, 2014, nearly half the town was lost due to a fire.