- Humphrey Gibbs
The Right Honourable
Sir Humphrey Gibbs
GCVO KCMG OBE
29th Governor of Southern Rhodesia In office
28 December 1959 – 24 June 1969
Preceded by Sir Peveril William-Powlett Succeeded by Lord Soames Personal details Born 22 November 1902
Died 5 November 1990(aged 87)
Spouse(s) Dame Molly Gibbs, DBE Alma mater Trinity College
Sir Humphrey Vicary Gibbs, GCVO, KCMG, OBE (22 November 1902 – 5 November 1990) was the penultimate Governor of the colony of Southern Rhodesia (1959–1970) who served through, and opposed, the Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI) in 1965.
Gibbs was born on 22 November 1902 in England, the third son of the first Baron Hunsdon. He was educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge. He moved to Southern Rhodesia in 1928, buying a farm at Nyamandhlovu near Bulawayo. Gibbs became active in farming administration and helped found the National Farmers Union. He was elected to the Legislative Assembly in the 1948 as a United Party member; he served one term, standing down in 1954.
As Governor of Rhodesia
In 1959, Queen Elizabeth II appointed Gibbs Governor of Southern Rhodesia and appointed him a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George (KCMG) in 1960. The Unilateral Declaration of Independence by the Rhodesian Front Government (under Prime Minister Ian Smith) in November 1965 placed Gibbs in a very difficult position: He was intensely loyal to Rhodesia – and was a close friend of Ian Smith, but while understanding what had made Smith's government declare the UDI, he was also equally loyal to his office as the Queen's viceroy. Deciding that final legality rested in the Crown and not Prime Minister Smith, he declared that by its action of the UDI, the Rhodesian Government had established itself as an outlaw regime.
So when Ian Smith and Deputy Prime Minister Clifford Dupont called on Gibbs after the UDI was signed, he formally dismissed Smith and his cabinet from office (though the Rhodesian Government simply ignored the dismissal, justifying this on the grounds that the UDI and new constitution made Gibbs' position redundant).
Several high-ranking officers of the Rhodesian Military did go to Gibbs earlier in the day and made a statement of loyalty to him, asking Gibbs to issue a warrant so that they could arrest Smith and Dupont, but Gibbs knew that bulk of the Officer Corps, as well as the rank and file of the Rhodesian military were solidly behind Smith's government and that such a move would lead to a coup d'état. Gibbs announced that despite the UDI, he had no intention of resigning his office or leaving Rhodesia, and that therefore, he would remain in Government House as the sole legal representative of Queen Elizabeth II (thus making Dupont's appointment by Smith as the Officer Administering the Government baseless in international law).
According to Gibbs' biographer (Alan J. Megahey), this action led to four years of harassment and petty afflictions by the Rhodesian Government, resulting in making Gibbs and his wife virtually prisoners in Government House. Megahey further stated that the Smith regime attempted to compel Gibbs to leave several times and isolated him from the people. However, with the assistance of a small staff, led by Sir John Pestell, he managed to remain defiant. In June 1969, Gibbs resigned after Smith's government ran and passed a referendum that year making Rhodesia a republic.
Gibbs resigned since as white voters had solidly supported the move towards Rhodesia becoming a republic, he felt that there was no further point in continuing to represent the Queen at that point. He left Government House and shortly afterwards travelled to take formal leave of the Queen in Britain.
He returned to Southern Rhodesia and lived the rest of his life on his farm (1970–1983) and latterly in Salisbury/Harare (1983–1990). He was appointed to the Privy Council and was made a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO) by Queen Elizabeth II.
Gibbs' wife, Molly Gibbs, née Peel Nelson, was awarded the DBE in 1969.
- According to Ian Smith's memoir Bitter Harvest, Smith had left instructions immediately after the UDI that Gibbs was not to be harassed or to be forced out of Government House. Smith – in the same memoir – made no mention of Gibbs giving either him or any member of his cabinet a dismissal notice. Indeed, he stated that Gibbs had intended to leave Government House and return to his farm, but the day after the UDI, decided to stay at his post after London instructed him to do so.
- Clifford Dupont's recollection of meeting Gibbs on 11 November 1965 was that he noticed that Gibbs was 'visibly distressed' and said "Gentlemen, you realize that I cannot agree or condone your decision". Dupont went on to fill Gibbs' position (in the eyes of the Rhodesian Government) as Officer Administering the Government, then later when Rhodesia was declared a republic, the first President.
- Gibbs accompanied Smith and his entourage in the 1966 and 1968 Gibraltar conferences at the invitation of British Prime Minister Harold Wilson. According to Bitter Harvest, Gibbs was broadly supportive of Smith's stance in those negotiations.
- Megahey, Alan J (Introduction by Robert Mugabe; Foreword by Robert Blake). Humphrey Gibbs, beleaguered Governor: Southern Rhodesia, 1929–69 (St. Martin's Press, New York, 1998).
- Smith, Ian Douglas (introduction by Professor J.R.T. Wood). Bitter Harvest: The Great Betrayal and the Dreadful Aftermath (Blake Publishing, 2001).
- Wood, J.R.T. (Foreword by Lord Deedes). So far and no further! Rhodesia's bid for independence during the retreat from empire 1959–1965 (Trafford Publishing, Victoria, 2005).
- Encyclopaedia Rhodesia (The College Press, Salisbury, 1973).
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Gibbs — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Sommaire 1 Univers de fiction 2 En sciences 2.1 … Wikipédia en Français
Gibbs — may refer to:People*Cecil Armstrong Gibbs, composer *Cory Gibbs, soccer player *Frederic A. Gibbs, neurologist *George Gibbs (mineralogist), (1776 1833) *George Gibbs (geologist), (1815 1873) *Herschelle Gibbs, South African cricketer *Humphrey… … Wikipedia
Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford — Humphrey VIII de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford (1276 ndash; March 16, 1321/1322) was a member of a powerful Anglo Norman family of the Welsh Marches and was one of the Ordainers who opposed Edward II s excesses.Family background Humphrey de Bohun s … Wikipedia
Humphrey de Bohun, IV conde de Hereford — Sello de Humphrey de Bohun, IV conde de Hereford Humphrey VIII de Bohun, IV conde de Hereford (1276 16 de marzo de 1322) era miembro de una poderosa famlia anglonormanda establecida en las Marcas Galesas y uno de los defensores de las Ordenanzas… … Wikipedia Español
Herbert Gibbs, 1st Baron Hunsdon of Hunsdon — Herbert Cokayne Gibbs, 1st Baron Hunsdon of Hunsdon (14 May 1854 22 May 1935), was a British businessman.Hunsdon was the fourth son of Hucks Gibbs, 1st Baron Aldenham, and Louisa Anne Adams, and was educated at Winchester and Trinity College,… … Wikipedia
William Gibbs McAdoo — This article is about the Secretary of the Treasury and U.S. Senator from California. For the Representative from New Jersey and New York City Police Commissioner, see William McAdoo (New Jersey). William Gibbs McAdoo 46th United States Secretary … Wikipedia
Charles Gibbs — This article is about American pirate. For Canadian politician, see Charles Gibbs (Alberta politician). Charles Gibbs (November 5, 1798 – April 22, 1831) was an American pirate (real name James D. Jeffers) who was one of the last active in the… … Wikipedia
George Magoffin Humphrey — (* 8. März 1890 in Cheboygan County (Michigan); † 20. Januar 1970 in Cleveland (Ohio)) war ein US amerikanischer Geschäftsmann, Politiker sowie Finanzminister … Deutsch Wikipedia
Vicary Gibbs, 6th Baron Aldenham — Vicary Tyser Gibbs, 6th Baron Aldenham (9 June 1948) is a British peer, the son of Anthony Durant Gibbs, 5th Baron Aldenham. He succeeded to the titles 4th Baron Hunsdon, and 6th Baron Aldenham on 25 January 1986.He married Josephine Nicola Fell … Wikipedia
Anthony Gibbs, 5th Baron Aldenham — Anthony Durant Gibbs, 5th Baron Aldenham (18 May 1922 25 January 1986) was a British peer, the son of Walter Durant Gibbs, 4th Baron Aldenham. He succeeded to the titles 3rd Baron Hunsdon, and 5th Baron Aldenham on 30 May 1969.He married Mary… … Wikipedia