RepositoryJesuits in Britain Archives
Ref NoABSI/SJ/175
TitleFr Basil Fitzgibbon SJ (1896-1980)
LevelSub fonds
DescriptionThis collection contains research material, correspondence, spiritual notes, and material for Fr Fitzgibbon's obituary.
Admin_HistoryFr Basil Fitzgibbon SJ was born 17 May 1896 and was brought up in Leeds. He entered the Novitiate at Manresa House, Roehampton, 7 September 1913, age 17. Having completed his juniorate there and philosophy at St Mary’s Hall, he was chosen to go to Campion Hall, Oxford to study history. He taught at Wimbledon for two years and began his Theology at St Beuno’s in 1925, going with the first generation to Heythrop in 1926. He was ordained there 8 September 1928 and returned to St Beuno’s for his tertianship in 1929. He taught for 4 years at Stonyhurst. Final vows were taken on 2 February 1931.

In 1934, Fr Fitzgibbon was assigned to the Curia in Rome to work on the library and the archives where he also collaborated with the Bibliotheca Scriptorium. In 1936, he was recalled to the English province as a writer to work on the cause of the English and Welsh martyrs. During the Second World War he was appointed army chaplain and was caught up in the retreat to Dunkirk. Later in the War, he was posted as an army chaplain in Burma, to the Sixth Independent British brigade of 2nd Division. He was promoted to Senior Roman Catholic Chaplain in 1944.

After being demobilised in 1945, he briefly taught at Campion House, Osterley, then was several years on the Wardour mission at Tisbury, Wiltshire. He was later appointed to Campion Hall to be a spiritual father. He continued his research work on recusant history and the cause of the martyrs, spending all holidays at Farm Street. In 1951, he returned to Farm Street and worked with Fr Leo Hicks SJ on a history of the province in Elizabethan and Stuart England. In 1959, he returned to Campion Hall and remained there until 1971. On ceasing to be a spiritual father he became a dedicated librarian. He joined the Council of the Catholic Record Society. He died on 29 January 1980. His requiem mass was held at St Mary’s Harborne on 4 February 1980.
Related MaterialFor photographs see:

For archive see:
SJ/142/3/3 - letters in Fr Francis Woodlock SJ's papers
Box 46/5/7-13 contains offprints annotated by Fitzgibbon (seems to have been incorrectly identified as Leo Hicks' annotations but handwriting is better match for Fitzgibbon)

929 Annotated copy of 'The Gunpowder Plot' by Hugh Ross Williamson - with Archivist
AccessConditionsThe papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to archive material in the Jesuits in Britain Archives.

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