Foreword – The history of Sumter County here presented is in response to a long-expressed desire of many citizens who are interested in the background of the home community of themselves and their ancestors. For years there had been talk of encouraging some qualified person to undertake the preparation of such an historical record, but nothing came of it until this Library Board was created by legislative enactment. After mature consideration, the Board decided that the sponsorship of a history of the county fell within the scope of its responsibility and authority.
This decision having been reached, the next step was to find a person qualified by experience in historical research, and to enlist the interest of that person in the undertaking. The choice fell upon Dr. Anne K Gregorie, a curator of the South Carolina Historical Society, who had taught history at the University of South Carolina, Arkansas College and Alabama College. Trained in methods of historical research, she was selected because as author of the only full-length, factual biography of General Thomas Sumter, based upon several years work, chiefly in unpublished records, it was felt that she had already acquired good experience for work on the history of the county. At the invitation of the Board, she came to Sumter for a discussion of the project, and accepted the commission to prepare a history of the county, with no definite time set for completion of the task. The only instructions given her by the Board were that the history of the county should be an authoritative, verifiable account of the life and times of the people of Sumter County, disregarding traditions and current legends not susceptible of proof.
This goal has been achieved, in the opinion of the Library Board, who now submit to the public the well-told story of what has happened in Sumter County during the two hundred and fifty years since John Lawson passed through on his journey from Charleston to the North Carolina settlements. We are confident that it is also a valuable contribution to the history of South Carolina.
Library Board of Sumter County – H.G. Ostee, chairman; Francis M Moise, secretary; J.A. Raffield, treasurer; James D. Blanding, I.L. Sanders, Robert Palmer, Mrs. T.D. Keels.
Copyright 1954, Library Board of Sumter County, Printed in U.S.A. Osteen-Davis Printing Company, Sumter SC
1974 First Reprint, By Permission, Sumter County Library, Sumter SC
2018 Second Reprint, By Permission, Sumter County Genealogical Society, Sumter SC