Sumter, Thomas (1734–1832), an American military leader and statesman. Sumter, known as the “Carolina Gamecock” for his courage and fighting spirit, distinguished himself as a brigadier general of South Carolina militia during the Revolutionary War. The daring guerrilla attacks he led against British forces contributed greatly to their defeat in the South.
Sumter was born near Charlottesville, Virginia. He fought in the French and Indian War and against the Cherokees on the frontier. After the Revolutionary War, he served in both the U.S. House of Representatives (1789–93; 1797–1801) and the U.S. Senate (1801–10).