New Summerfield is at the intersection of U.S. Highway 79 and State Highway 110, ten miles east of Jacksonville in northeast Cherokee County. The site was settled by homesteaders in the 1850s and first called Union Chapel. A union church was established there, and G. F. Fullerton deeded three acres to the Methodist Church on July 27, 1887. The McDonald and Dodson cemeteries were begun in the 1850s. There was an early school, probably taught in the church. The town began on July 29, 1895, when Caley Amos Summers gave land for a public school. On November 9, 1895, Summers sold land near the school to F. F. Fullerton and Isaac "Ike" W. Tipton for a mill and gin. Tipton also built a store. A post office was opened in the store, and Tipton was appointed postmaster in 1897. The town was named for its location in Summers's field. Soon general stores were operated by Arthur Dickson, John Sowell, Alex Tipton, and Ed Nicholson, who took over Ike Tipton's store. Clint Trotter and Charlie Connor ran a blacksmith and woodworking ship. Joe Brady had a blacksmith shop. Elmer Cowan operated a drugstore, barbershop, and shingle mill. Doctors Fullerton, Tennison, and Bell practiced medicine. Dr. Bell had a telephone switchboard in his home.
Summerfield developed rapidly because the crossroads led to towns where farm products could be marketed. In 1912 the school was one of the best in the county. By 1925 plant farms became a major industry. Greenhouses replaced open-field plant farms in the 1940s. The post office was discontinued in 1905 but reopened in 1938, when the name was changed to New Summerfield, because Summerfield, Castro County, had opened a post office. New Summerfield was incorporated, and the first town officials were sworn in on August 23, 1963. In 1988 the town had a city hall, a fire station, a post office, a school, several businesses, a Masonic lodge, three cemeteries (McDonald, Dodson, and Union Chapel), and three churches (Methodist, Baptist, and Church of Christ). Greenhouses, Christmas tree farms, and ranches are important to the economy. The population in 1988 was recorded as 314. In 1990 it was 521. The population grew to 998 in 2000.