Gibbs was born on February 28, 1748, in Newport, Rhode Island. He took up residence in Marblehead, Massachusetts. During the American Revolutionary War, he was a captain in the 14th Massachusetts Regiment from Marblehead. On 12 March 1776, General Washington appointed Captain Gibbs as the commander of the Commander-in-Chief's Guard, with the title of captain commandant. Three years later, in 1779, Gibbs was succeeded as commander by William Colfax. During his command of Washington's "Life Guard" Gibbs was promoted to the rank of Major on July 29, 1778. Gibbs was succeeded by William Colfax as commander of the Life Guard.
On November 6, 1818, Gibbs died in Charlestown, Massachusetts.
- Ward, Harry M. George Washington's Enforcers: Policing the Continental Army (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2006); Chapt. 5 Washington's Life Guard, p.60
- William Nelson (1876). Biographical Sketch of William Colfax, Captain of Washington's Body Guard.