People

Garretson W. Gibson’s biography, net worth, fact, career, awards and life story

IntroLiberian politician
Was Politician 
From Liberia 
United States of America 
Type Politics 
Gendermale
Birth 20 May 1832, Baltimore, USA
Death 26 April 1910, Monrovia, Liberia
(aged 77 years)
Star sign Taurus
Politics True Whig Party

Garretson Wilmot Gibson (20 May 1832 – 26 April 1910) was the 14th President of Liberia from 11 December 1900, to 4 January 1904. Born in Maryland, in the United States, his family emigrated to Liberia in 1845. After receiving an education in mission schools, he returned to Maryland to study theology. Ordained a priest, he served as rector of the Episcopalian Trinity Church in Monrovia. He also served as Chaplain of the Liberian Senate. Later, he served as President of the Trustee Board of Liberia College and at one time President of the College.

President Gibson began his political life as a justice of the peace. With the election of William D. Coleman as president in 1896, Gibson was appointed Secretary of the Interior. He was Secretary of State when Coleman resigned in 1900, and since there was no vice-president, Gibson was chosen to succeed him. He won the election that same year, and served until 1904, when his Secretary of the Treasury, Arthur Barclay, succeeded him.

President Gibson died in Monrovia on April 26, 1910. He was the last Liberian president to have been born in the United States.

Presidency (1900–1904)

Prior to attaining the presidency, Gibson had had a long career in government including serving as Secretary of the Interior and Secretary of State.

In 1903, the British forced a concession of Liberian territory to Sierra Leone, but tension along that border remained high.

Whenever the British and French seemed intent on enlarging at Liberia’s expense the neighboring territories they already controlled, periodic appearances by U.S. warships helped discourage encroachment, even though successive American administrations rejected appeals from Monrovia for more forceful support.

Sources

  • Nathaniel R. Richardson, Liberia’s Past and Present. London: The Diplomatic Press and Publishing Company, 1959.