Back to former Vermont governors
Ernest William Gibson

Gov. Ernest William Gibson

  • January 9, 1947 - January 16, 1950
  • Republican
  • March 6, 1901
  • November 4, 1969
  • Vermont
  • Norwich University, George Washington University Law School
  • Married twice--Dorothy P. Switzer (four children), Ann H. Haag
  • Resigned
  • Senator
  • Army
  • Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart, War Department Citation


ERNEST W. GIBSON was born in Brattleboro, Vermont. He graduated from Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont in 1923 and from the George Washington University Law School in Washington, DC in 1927. While studying law at night, he also taught at the New York Military Academy in Cornwall, New York and worked as a computer operator in the Coast and Geodetic Survey. He served as State’s Attorney for Windham County from 1929 to 1933, assistant secretary to the state Senate from 1931 to 1933, secretary to the state Senate from 1933 to 1940, and a member of the Vermont Railroad Tax Commission in 1939 and 1940. In 1940 he was appointed to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the death of his father. However, his service as a Senator was interrupted by World War II. Having been commissioned as a Captain in the Army Reserve, he was called to active duty and ended his service with the rank of Colonel and numerous commendations. He never sought election to the Senate in his own right, instead defeating incumbent Mortimer R. Proctor for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. Going on to win the general election and reelection two years later, Gibson proposed numerous social and economic reforms in the areas of health, welfare, and education. During his second term, he accepted appointment as U.S. District Judge for the District of Vermont, a position that he held until his death.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 4. Westport, CT: Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Vol. H.  New York: James T. White & Company.

Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

List of Vermont Governors

Vermont Primary and General Election Results

Gubernatorial Inaugural and Farewell Addresses

Gubernatorial Vetoes


Recent Vermont Governors