For almost a century, Gibson Davenport Anderson and its predecessors have provided legal services to clients in Wichita Falls and North Texas. From early beginnings at the turn of the twentieth century, through the dawn of the twenty-first century, the firm has been a vital part of the legal, civic and economic development of the area. The firm continues a long standing tradition of commitment to the legal needs of our clients by appreciating our history while at the same time realizing the need to adapt to the ever changing demands of a modern legal environment. Our knowledge of the area, its people, culture, and resources gives the firm a unique perspective in the delivery of quality legal services. We are committed to continuing this tradition of excellence and service in order to meet the needs of our clients.
One of the pioneer firms in Wichita County was the firm of Charles C. Huff, Joe H. Barwise and Orville Bullington. About 1914, Mr. Huff became general counsel for the Katy Railroad in Dallas and Mr. Barwise took a similar position with the Forth Worth & Denver Railroad in Ft. Worth. Mr. Bullington, left as a solo practitioner, persuaded the young District Attorney from Henrietta, Leslie Humphrey, to join him in the practice of law along with T. R. (Dan) Boone. The firm soon moved into the newly constructed City National Building and has maintained its offices in that location for over 80 years. Through the years, many well known names in the Wichita Falls legal community practiced with the firm, including Congressman Frank Ikard, John Humphrey, John King, Judge P. A. Martin, H. W. Fillmore, Dustin Fillmore, Judge Lucian Parrish, George Verity and A.W. (Budi) Luecke.
Orville Bullington was born in Indian Springs, Missouri, on February 10, 1882. He received his secondary education in a Tennessee academy, then worked his way through Sam Houston Normal Institute ( now Sam Houston State University), graduating in 1901. He taught school for two years before entering the University of Texas Law School in 1903, finishing the three year program in two years. In 1906 he opened a law office in Munday, Texas, serving as county attorney for a term. In June 1909, he moved to Wichita Falls, where he practiced law for the remainder of his life, forming a partnership with Leslie Humphrey in 1914. Bullington was president of the Chamber of Commerce and had interests in several businesses including American National Bank, Kemp Hotel Corporation, Wichita Falls & Southern Railroad, and Kell Enterprises and oil interests in the Wichita Falls area and the Texas panhandle. He served on the Board of Regents at the University of Texas. After 1918 when he left the Democratic party, Mr. Bullington was active in the Republican party and was the Republican nominee for Governor in 1932, waging a vigorous campaign. Though unsuccessful, he polled the largest number of Republican votes garnered by a candidate to that time but was defeated by Mirian “Ma” Ferguson. He served as a delegate to eight Republican conventions and was a member of the Executive Committee of the Republican party. Orville Bullington died in November 1956 at the age of 74.
“Uncle Les” Humphrey received his law degree from the University of Texas in 1909. He was born on June 3, 1884 at Mobeetie, Texas. He grew up in the Texas panhandle and was familiar with the ranching and oil and gas industries. He was admitted to the bar in 1908, and after law school moved to Henrietta where he practiced and served as District Attorney for four or five years until 1914, when he formed the association with Orville Bullington which would last for 40 years. For over half a century, he had a role in virtually every movement of a progressive nature in the Wichita Falls community. He worked behind the scenes for the Democratic party and in local civic affairs along with such leaders as Rhea Howard and J. S. Bridwell. He was a leader in his church and many civic organizations. However, he was most respected as a fine trial lawyer and advisor to many clients. Over the years, clients included the City National Bank, Times Publishing Company, Texas Electric Service Company, Wichita Falls & Southern Railroad, and the M-K-T Railroad. Les Humphrey was involved in the celebrated legal battles with Oklahoma over the right to the oil rich beds of the Red River. He not only represented business interests, but also represented those accused of crimes, including the representation of a socialite from Tulsa accused of murdering her husband. He was admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court in 1925. Uncle Les “retired” from the practice of law in 1963 but continued to come to the office well after his retirement. He died in 1967 at the age of 82.
The firm was continued after the retirement of Leslie Humphrey by John Q. Humphrey, Lee Humphrey and Frank Gibson. Frank Gibson continued the firm after the death of John Humphrey and the departure of Lee Humphrey, and is now the “senior partner” of the firm.
Frank Gibson, a native of Wichita Falls, graduated from the University of Texas School of Law in 1957 and took a job with the Wichita County Attorney’s office. He became the City Attorney for the City of Wichita Falls in 1959, and served in that capacity until 1961 when he left to join the firm.
C.A. "Tony" Hotchkiss joined Mr. Gibson in the practice of law in 1971and they were joined by Erwin Davenport in 1982. In addition to the four partners, the firm has the following associate attorneys, Matt Anderson, Marvin Brown, Todd Davenport and Barbara Gibson .
In 2004, the firm expanded by opening an office in Austin, Texas. The firm is committed to bringing its own brand of quality service and dedication to clients in Central Texas.
The firm continues to represent a wide variety of corporate, institutional, and individual clients. Our practice now extends to Wichita Falls and Austin, as well as the entire North and Central Texas regions. The partners and associates continue the tradition of active participation in the profession and the community. Members of the firm are active in the social, religious, civic and political life of our communities, serving on numerous boards and non profit organizations. We are both proud of and humbled by our wonderful heritage in the practice of law and look forward to continuing the tradition with renewed resolve and enthusiasm in the years to come.