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Sumter County

Date Built1959
Architecture StyleModern
DesignerE. Oren Smith
Seat InformationThe act creating Sumter County named Martin G. Mims, Hiram D. Youngblood, Lovet B. Smith, Samuel Faust, and Joseph Jackson as commissioners with authority to designate the site for holding elections and court sessions until the county was organized (Ga. Laws 1831, p. 76). Until such temporary site was designated, the legislation directed that Sumter County inferior and superior courts be held at the house of John Kimmy, in the twenty seventh district of the new county. The five commissioners were further directed to select a site for the county seat, have the site divided into town lots, and sell the lots, with the proceeds to fund construction of a courthouse and jail. In July 1832, the commissioners purchased lot 156 in the 27th district (which was located near the geographic center of the new county) and had a town square individual lots laid out. Reportedly, the new county seat was named for Italian navigator Amerigo Vespucci (1451-1512), though it also may have reflected the Latinized masculine form of America. On Dec. 22, 1832, the General Assembly formally designated Americus as county seat and incorporated it as a town (Ga. Laws 1832, p. 1919).
Courthouse DetailsThe Dec. 26, 1831 legislation creating Sumter County designated the house of John Kimmy, in the twenty seventh district, as the temporary courthouse of the new county. How long this served as courthouse is not known. Reportedly, John R. Moore was paid $950 in 1834 to build a new courthouse but in July 1834 fled the county with the money. In 1839, a two-story, wood-frame courthouse was completed in the center of the town square. In 1853, this structure was moved to the west side of Jackson St., and a new brick courthouse built in its place. In 1883, the General Assembly authorized a referendum to be held in Sumter County to allow the county to borrow up to $30,000 to construct a new courthouse (Ga. Laws 1882-83, p. 656). The results of the referendum, which required approval of two-thirds of those voting, are not known, but in 1887 work began on a new courthouse at the corner of Forsyth and Lee streets. This building, designed by Atlanta architects Bruce & Morgan, was completed in May 1888 and served until May 1959, when the present courthouse was completed. Subsequently, the former courthouse was torn down.
County Data
Population 200033,200
Population Growth-1.1
County SeatAmericus
County Area492.6 Square Miles
Location MapSumter County Location Map

Sumter County was created from Lee County on Dec. 26, 1831, by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1831, p. 76). In 1857, portions of Sumter County were used to create Schley County (Ga. Laws 1857, p. 42).

Georgia’s 80th county was named Gen. Thomas Sumter (1734-1832), who at the time of the county’s creation was 97 years of age and the last surviving general officer of the American Revolution.

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Legal OrganAmericus Times-Recorder
Chamber of Commerce Web SiteVisit Web Site
Historical Population
2010 32,819
2000 33,200
1990 30,228
1980 29,360
1970 26,931
1960 24,652
1950 24,208
1940 24,502
1930 26,800
1920 29,640
1910 29,092
1900 26,212
1890 22,107
1880 18,239
1870 16,559
1860 9,428
1850 10,322
1840 5,759