Family and Early Life
Harvey Dow Gibson was born on March 12, 1882 at North Conway, New Hampshire, the son of James Lewis Gibson and Addie Dow. His father was telegraph operator for the Portland & Ogdensburg Railroad. He attended Fryeburg Academy
Fryeburg Academy, founded 1792, is one of the oldest private schools in the United States. It is located in Fryeburg, Maine. One of the first headmasters was Daniel Webster, who taught at the school for a year....
, graduating in 1898.
From Fryeburg, he went on to Bowdoin College
Bowdoin College , founded in 1794, is an elite private liberal arts college located in the coastal Maine town of Brunswick, Maine. As of 2011, U.S. News and World Report ranks Bowdoin 6th among liberal arts colleges in the United States. At times, it was ranked as high as 4th in the country. It is...
in Brunswick, Maine
Brunswick is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, United States. The population was 20,278 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Portland-South Portland-Biddeford metropolitan area. Brunswick is home to Bowdoin College, the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum, , and the...
, graduating in 1902.
Gibson began his career with the American Express Company, then later with Liberty National Bank, where he became president in 1916. As a result of the merger between Liberty National Bank and New York Trust Company, he became president of the latter. In December, 1930, as part of a plan by the New York Clearing House and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to stem bank runs, Gibson headed a group of investors which purchased the controlling interest in the Manufacturers Trust Company from Goldman Sachs
The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. is an American multinational bulge bracket investment banking and securities firm that engages in global investment banking, securities, investment management, and other financial services primarily with institutional clients...
, and he became president of the bank on January 5, 1931.
Gibson was active with the American Red Cross, serving as its Commissioner in France during World War I, and as Commissioner to Great Britain during World War II.
He notably founded the Cranmore Mountain Resort
Cranmore Mountain Resort is located in North Conway, New Hampshire. Currently, it is one of New Hampshire's most successful ski resorts.It was founded in 1937 by a group of businessmen, led by Harvey Dow Gibson a native son of North Conway and president of the Manufacturers Trust Company, who...
in 1937, importing Austrian ski instructor Hannes Schneider
Johann "Hannes" Schneider was an Austrian Ski instructor of the first half of the twentieth century.He was born in the town of Stuben am Arlberg in Austria as a son of a cheese maker. In 1907 he became a ski guide at the Hotel Post in St. Anton, Austria where he began work on what became known as...
to teach guests how to ski. He bought the Eastern Slope Inn
Eastern Slope Inn is a historic inn on Main Street in North Conway, New Hampshire.The Colonial Revival building was built in 1926 by H.E. Mason and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982....
in the same year, and served on the executive board of the New York World's Fair
The 1939–40 New York World's Fair, which covered the of Flushing Meadows-Corona Park , was the second largest American world's fair of all time, exceeded only by St. Louis's Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904. Many countries around the world participated in it, and over 44 million people...
in 1939 and 1940.