Tennessee was the site of the first recorded manned flight in history. In 1878, a man named George Washington Pearcy flew a steam-powered aircraft over a field in Shelbyville, Tennessee.
Sumner County, Tennessee, has a rich history that stretches back to the Native American settlements that existed long before the arrival of European colonizers. The area was home to the Cherokee, Shawnee, and Chickasaw tribes, who utilized the fertile land along the Cumberland River for agriculture and hunting. European exploration and settlement began in the late 1700s, with early explorers like Daniel Boone and John Donelson venturing into the region.

In 1786, Sumner County was officially established, becoming one of the first counties in Tennessee. The county was named after Revolutionary War hero, General Jethro Sumner. The early settlers faced many challenges, including conflicts with Native Americans and the harsh wilderness. However, they persevered, and by the early 1800s, Sumner County had become a thriving agricultural community, known for its production of tobacco, corn, and livestock.

During the Civil War, Sumner County played a significant role as a strategic location between the Union and Confederate forces. Several skirmishes and battles took place in the area, including the Battle of Hartsville and the Battle of Gallatin. The war brought destruction and hardship to the county, but it also led to the emancipation of enslaved individuals and brought about social and economic changes.

In the decades that followed, Sumner County experienced growth and transformation. The expansion of railroads and the development of industries such as lumber, textiles, and manufacturing spurred economic prosperity. Today, Sumner County is known for its historical significance, beautiful landscapes, and a thriving community that blends the charm of the past with modern amenities and opportunities.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Sumner County, Tennessee.

  • 1786 - Sumner County is established as one of Tennessee's original counties.
  • 1794 - Gallatin becomes the county seat of Sumner County.
  • 1812 - The County Courthouse in Gallatin is destroyed by fire.
  • 1820 - A new County Courthouse is constructed in Gallatin.
  • 1862 - During the American Civil War, Union and Confederate forces clash near Gallatin.
  • 1901 - The Tennessee Central Railway is completed, connecting Sumner County to Nashville and other major cities.
  • 1974 - The county experiences significant damage from an F3 tornado.
  • 2010 - The population of Sumner County surpasses 160,000 residents.