Gibbs Brothers and Company, Huntsville, a family partnership concerned primarily with land-owning and investments, is reputedly the oldest continuous business in Texas still on its original site and under the same ownership. It began when Thomas Gibbs moved to Texas in 1841 and opened a general mercantile store and was in 1847 joined by his brother, Sandford St. John Gibbs, to form the original partnership. The firm built the first brick building in Walker County, located on the main Huntsville square, which was commemorated by a Texas historical marker in 1963. Thomas Gibbs was the first-named executor in the will of Sam Houston, who was a regular customer of the firm. Gibbs Brothers and Company's private bank became the Gibbs National Bank in 1890 and the First National Bank in 1922. Also in 1922 the mercantile business was discontinued, and the firm thereafter concentrated on acquiring land and making other forms of investment. Throughout the twentieth century the company continued to be a family-owned operation that dealt mainly in land and timber investments. In 1992 the old store building was restored.
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D'Anne McAdams Crews, ed., Huntsville and Walker County, Texas: A Bicentennial History (Huntsville, Texas: Sam Houston State University, 1976). Texas Bankers Record, March 1926. Marker Files, Texas Historical Commission, Austin. Clarence R. Wharton, ed., Texas under Many Flags (5 vols., Chicago: American Historical Society, 1930).
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
J. Philip Gibbs, Jr.,
“Gibbs Brothers and Company,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed July 01, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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