While only incorporated in 1845, the Sumter area was settled and farmed as far back as the 1740s. It’s named for General Thomas Sumter, a.k.a. “The Fighting Gamecock,” one of several guerrilla leaders against the British during the American Revolution.
Born in Virginia, Sumter founded the nearby town of Statesburg in the 1760s. Legend has it that he became an implacable foe of the British when a party of redcoats plundered his home and forced his invalid wife to watch it burn to the ground.
For a long time largely dependent on nearby Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter is a quiet and growing city about 45 miles east of Columbia  that’s gradually turning to retirees and tourism to diversify its economy.
Public policy geeks might be interested to know that in 1912 Sumter was the first city in the U.S. to adopt the council-manager form of government in which an appointed, professional city manager runs day-to-day operations.