Solomon Goss his ministry…

While visiting in the Marietta area in 2011, I went to the courthouse for a variety of reasons and one in particular was to determine if there was a court document on file giving a ministers license to Solomon Goss.  Unfortunately, none was found.  I also contacted the United Methodist Historical Society who have their archives at the Ohio Wesleyan University campus in Delaware, Ohio, but they told me they only kept records of ministers who were licensed or ordained and not of lay ministers.  Solomon Goss could have gotten a license while he was in Pennsylvania or Virginia, but I have not investigated that at this time. Perhaps a check of records would be in order.

First meeting House in Ohio

First meeting House in Ohio

Paul H. Goss and Flora Montanye Osborn believed that Solomon was a minister and there seems to be some evidence that he did preach, maybe marry couples and helped other ministers.

Solomon Goss converted from the Congregational Church (First Church of Christ, Becket, MA) to the Methodist faith when he was en route to Ohio.

…”In his first tour he (Robert Manley) visited each settlement in the county–found a Presbyterian, a Congregational, and a Baptist minister; but many new and small, but growing neighbourhoods, were totally destitute of all sanctuary opportunities. In the most of those settlements, he found open doors for his reception. He also found Solomon Goss, and two members of his family, who had experienced the blessed effects of Methodism in their own hearts. This family, when on their way from the east to Ohio, stopped a season in West Liberty, where they were awakened and converted to God by the instrumentality of T. Fleming. If others opened their doors through vain curiosity, to hear what the babbler could say, this family opened theirs from the noblest and best feelings of their hearts. As their attachments to the church were early in their beginning, so they have been deep and constant to the present time…”

A little about T. Fleming:  As early as 1801, the Erie circuit existed, which embraced the first religious organizations of the Methodists in this county, and for a long time afterwards the whole or a considerable part of the county. It was in the Pittsburgh district, which was within the bounds of the Baltimore Conference. The presiding elder of the district was Thornton Fleming; and the preacher of the Erie circuit was James Quinn. It is said that Mr. Quinn’s circuit, when formed, contained twenty appointments, requiring him to travel four hundred miles every four weeks. The first class he formed was near a place called Lexington, in Springfield township, Erie county, Pa. In 1804 the district took the name of Monongahela, and Thornton Fleming was continued presiding elder until the meeting of the Baltimore Conference in May, 1810, when Jacob Gruber was appointed presiding elder, and Joshua Monroe, preacher of Erie circuit; and the year following, James Watts and James Ewing..”

Source: Methodist Magazine and Quarterly Review, Vol. XII. New Series, Vol. 1, 1830 Article title: Methodism in Washington Co., Ohio, by the Rev. Samuel Hamilton, J. Emory & B. Waugh, J. Collard, Printer, 1830. Chapter XXIV, pg. 407 (404 to 411). Copy available at Google Books.

The above quotation from the Methodist Magazine is very important. It places Solomon Goss and family probably in West Liberty in Virginia en route to Ohio. According to my Geo Locator there are 16 West Liberty towns. I lean toward the one in what is now West Virginia. It is  near Wheeling, VA. where many pioneers went through to the West.

This may be why Daniel Goss, the son, says he was born in Virginia. It also tells us that Solomon Goss was a man of faith.

In a letter from Flora to Paul on February 3, 1941, Flora writes the following:

You sure can keep the pamphlet I sent you ___Solomon Goss was a minister and performed the marriage Ceremony of those couples I mentioned so States the Authority I quoted. He might not have been what we now call a regular pastor, but one authority says he carried on a series of revival meetings at Marietta, Ohio at one time. His son was a local preacher here in Lenawee Co., Mich. (She is referring to his son Levi.)

Source: Letter of Flora Osborn to Paul H. Goss, February 3, 1941, New England Historic and Genealogical Society, Goss Collection, Special Collections. 

Unfortunately, Flora does not give the “authorities” she mentions.  I do have letters that they wrote to each other but probably not a complete set and the attachments were not copied (too expensive back then) but returned to the original person.

So I turned to the histories of the time and let’s see what we find.

Source: 1788-1881 n the History of Washington County, Ohio with Illustrations and Biographical Sketches, The Washington County Historical Society, H.O. Williams & Bros. Publishers, 1881, reprinted 1976. We find the following on several of the pages:

pages 382-383: 2nd column – “The Methodist Episcopal Church – Rev. Robert Manley was sent to this section as a missionary in June 1799, preached the first Methodist sermon in Marietta. On Duck Creek he found SOLOMON GOSS, 2 members of his family were Methodist.

pg. 383 1st column …A number of small classes were founded, and a circuit was organized in 1800. The members were Henry Fearing of Harmon, Elijah Francis & wife, Jones Johnson & wife, SOLOMON GOSS & Wife.”

pg. 519: Belpre Twp. – During the fall and winter of 1820-21 a soc. was organized (Meth Episcopal), there being the first class books thirteen names, as follows: Daniel GOSS and his wife Lydia, Samuel Hooper, Clarissa Ackley, William P. Howe, A. Gridley, Eliz. Howe, Leroy Gridley, Susan Oaks, Susan O’Brien, Chester and Caroline Gridley and Louis Bradford. Daniel Goss, who was one of the most energetic of the early Methodists, was appointed class leader. Among his papers there were found the old subscription paper for the building of the church: – in this list Daniel gave $40.00 in a long list and Solomon Goss gave $2.00.

page 587-588 – “Methodist meetings were held in the neighborhood from time immemorial to the oldest inhabitants. The earliest remembered preacher was a local exhorter known as Father GOSS, who lived in the Chapman settlement, in Fearing township and came to the Salem settlement to preach every two weeks. These meetings were held in the house of some settler, often at the residence of Amos and Simon Porter.”

On pg 680 — “Thus the little baby’s short life was marked only by its birth and death. The funeral was preached at the house of Levi Daines by a Mr. GOSS, who was the first Methodist preacher ever in the county. Only the Daines and Duttons attended the funeral; there were as yet no other settlers in the township.” [about 1809.]

Some very interesting entries are found in the Old Northwest Genealogical Quarterly Magazine, and they have a Solomon Goss performing marriages.

1815, November 5. William Mead and Cynthia Harris (Washington Co., Ohio); Solomon Goss.

1815, November 9, William Cook and Nancy Barton, (Washington County, Ohio; Solomon Goss.

1818, Jan. 18, Amlin, Salley D. and Patrick Campbell by Solomon Goss, Washington Co.

Source: Ohio Marriages Extracted from the Old Northwest Genealogical Quarterly, Edited by Marjorie Smith, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. 1986. This book is at under Ohio Marriages, 1789-1898. You can search or browse the collection. Becareful, you need the location to make sure you have the correct Solomon Goss who is listed as performing the marriage.  

In the following Solomon Goss was mentioned as giving money to a minister who was in distress.

pg. 185 – Jacob Young was traveling the Marietta Circuit in 1805. Gave this account of his situation. He was without money. “…I was at a loss to know what to do. But man’s distress is God’s opportunity. A strange lady came at the right time and handed me a dollar. Solomon Goss gave me four or five dollars…”

Source: History of Methodism: a study in social science, Experience of Itinerants, by John Marshall Barker, Curt & Jennings, 1898. page 185. This book is at Internet Archive. 

I am happy to state that I found another source that gives a little more information about Solomon Goss. This is Rev. Jacob Young’s actual autobiography.

The next Sabbath, I tried to preach again. My strength was greatly increased, and the Lord gave me great freedom of speech. Next Sabbath was my quarterly meeting. The trustees of the academy kindly offered me their house to hold our meeting. I went down, Saturday, at 11 o’clock, but found no presiding elder, and received no information of the reason of his absence, which, however, I supposed,was either the inclemency of the weather or the great distance of Marietta from his abode. The congregation gathered, and I tried to preach. In the evening, Rev. Solomon Goss preached to a crowded house. He was all the help I had.

I preached several times, held love-feast, and had an excellent quarterly meeting for that place at that time. Meeting over, and my health being a little improved, I began to think about taking my circuit. On examining my clothing, I found that my shoes were nearly worn out; they would not keep my feet warm nor dry. My old cloak was too thin for that very cold winter. Having got but little quarterage the preceding year, my money was exhausted. I was at a loss to know what to do. But man’s distress is God’s opportunity. A strange lady came at the right time, and handed me a dollar. Solomon Goss gave me four or five dollars. Some other friends, unknown to me, sent a few dollars more….

Source: Autobiography of a Pioneer; or, the Nativity, Experience, Travels and Ministerial Labors of Rev. Jacob Young, Jacob Young 1776-1859, pages 151-152, published 1857, Crantson and Curs, New York. This copy I found at My Heritage. This seems to be a more complete version of Solomon Goss and his involvement with the Rev. Jacob Young.

The great news is that Solomon Goss was there when Methodism was being established in the state of Ohio. He knew the ministers that came to Marietta, like Mr. Manley and Rev. Young. One other observation is that it mentions Solomon Goss and wife.  This means that wife, Olive was alive in 1800 to 1805.

The photo of the cabin above was found in: Ohio History Journal, 165, Introduction of Methodism in Ohio, by Rev. I.F. King. D.D. Publications of the Ohio History Connection.

Notes: Paul H. Goss and Flora Montanye Osborn are past researchers of the Goss family history and I will be quoting them a lot in future posts.  If you would like to know more about them, go to the top of this blog and hover your mouse over the main menu of PAGES and make your selection. You will find them under Researchers of the Past.  I am adding information and short biographies of the researchers who have led the way on our family history.  Check back occasionally for I will be adding over time.
Posted in Belpre, Flora Montanye Osborn 1869 to 1951, Marietta, Ohio Research trips 2011 and 2007, Olive Scott Goss, The Wife, Paul H. Goss 1890 to 1963, Solomon Goss, Washington County, Washington County Courthouse | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Solomon Goss in 1820…

Fearing Township 2012

Fearing Township 2012

Solomon Goss appears in the 1820 U.S. Federal Census in Fearing Twp., Washington Co., Ohio. This U.S. Census was enumerated on August 7, 1820. I have included it in my Census and Tax Study covering Solomon Goss and his family in the last post.  In this post I want to examine it further because it is the last census that Solomon Goss appears in.

I thought it would be fun to speculate as to what the numbers meant that are listed with Solomon Goss in the 1820 census. U.S. Census from 1791 to 1840 are statistical and only show head of household. Then those in the household are indicated in different categories as either female or male and of in age groupings.

I have added my speculations as to who the individuals listed in the various categories could be:

  • Free White Persons – Males 16 to 25: 1  – could this be John A. Spracklin
  • Free White Persons – Males 45 and over: 1 – could this be Solomon Goss
  • Free White Persons Females under 10 – 1 – could this be Ida Spracklin first daughter of Lydia Goss and John Spracklin.
  • Free White Person Females 16 thru 25 – 2 – could one be Lydia Goss Spracklin. Who is the other female?
  • Free White Females 26 thru 44 – 1  – Could this be sister and daughter Mary Goss about 35 years old.
  • Free White Persons Females – 45 and over – 1  – Unknown????
  • Foreigners not Naturalized – 1  – This is John Spracklin an Englishman. He naturalized in 1859 in Knox County, Ohio.  I wrote about this in a post on this blog.
  • Number of person engaged in agriculture – 2 – John and Solomon
  • Free White Persons – under 16  – 1
  • Free White Persons – Over 25 – 3
  • Total Free White Persons – 7
  • Total All Persons – 7
  • Total All Persons, White, Slaves, Colored, Other – 7

Let’s review the family and see if we can fit the family into the census numbers above. Of course this is all speculation on my part.  You might have another take on the numbers which is fine.  You can find the actual census pages at or Family Search. When you take a look at the census you will see that it might be a challenge to read the columns for it was just a piece of paper with lines and numbers and names written on it.

1820 Fearing Twp., Washington Co., Ohio

1820 Fearing Twp., Washington Co., Ohio

  • Solomon himself would be 66 years old at this time. Olive if she is truly alive would be 63 years old and might be the lady listed 45 and older.  I feel that she died before 1810 because his will did not mention Olive “his loving wife.”  The 1815 deeds of land in Knox Co. to his children did not show Olive releasing her dower? So we have a puzzle as to who the lady at age 45 and over might be?
  • Elizabeth Goss married Andrew Lake in 1798 and she was born 1777 and she would be about 43. Andrew Lake is listed in Union Twp., Washington Co. in Ohio in the records for 1820. So I don’t think it is Elizabeth unless she was visiting.
  • Noah Goss born 1782 – there are only two males listed and Noah would be about 38 years old. I have not found him in the census.
  • Mary born 1785 making her 35 years old.
  • Solomon Goss (Jr.) married Polly Devol in 1812 and he was born 1788 about 32 years old.
  • Daniel Goss married Lydia in 1813 and he was born about 1790 and he is listed in the 1820 Census as living in Belpre, Ohio.
  • Levi is living in Canada at this time, he was born 1793
  • Lydia Goss and John Andrew Spracklin married in 1819 and they have not yet migrated to Knox County, Ohio at this time.
  • Wine Rood and wife Anne Spracklin and family are living in Fearing Twp. in 1820. This is John’s uncle and aunt.
  • John and Lydia were the parents of Alfred and Ida. I do not have much on either.  Ida is buried in Knox Co. with her parents.  The above does not mention a young boy.

I have written posts and published them about all of Solomon and Olive’s children and the others, so you can do more reading and searching on this blog about these individuals. At the top of the blog you will find in the drop down menu PAGES that have table of contents of the posts published by family groupings.

Posted in Daniel Goss & Lydia Ackley, Fearing Township, John Andrews Spracklin & Lydia Goss, Levi Goss and Sophia Rummerfield, Mary Goss, Noah Goss, Olive Scott Goss, The Wife, Solomon Goss, Solomon Goss (Jr.) and Polly Coburn Devol, Washington County, Wine Rood and Anne Andrews Rood | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Solomon Goss: The Census and Tax Records of Washington and Knox Co., Ohio – A Review

In several past posts I wrote about the census and tax records of Washington County and Knox County, Ohio on this blog.  What follows is a review and summary. To understand the census and tax records as they affect Solomon Goss and family, I strongly urge you to read the two published posts identified below.

In the following two posts, I did a study of the census and tax records covering Solomon Goss, his children: Elizabeth, Noah, Mary, Solomon Jr., Daniel, Levi, and David and his daughter Lydia who married John Andrews Spracklin and their migration to Knox Co., Ohio.

The first post I wrote was titled: John and Lydia (Goss) Spracklin Migrate to Knox Co., Ohio!,  and published March 14, 2013.  Because the census stated little about the family, I turned to the tax records to get a fuller picture of their lives. While in Marietta I was at the Genealogical Annex of the Washington County Public Library where they had the Treasurer “Duplicate books.”

Tax Books Washington Co., Ohio

Tax Books Washington Co., Ohio

These are the actual tax records and very amazing. I presented what I found in those books in the posts I wrote.  You can also find these tax records online at Family Search’s website. There are additional books and sources I listed in the posts, such as films and more and I also give examples.

I presented an Excel spreadsheet summarizing the year of the census or tax records, the location and who was listed. It covers Solomon and his children Daniel, Noah, Levi, Mary and Lydia and it goes all the way to 1832 when the son, Solomon Goss, sold the land and left for Hardin Co., Ohio.

I present a PDF of that spreadsheet: censustaxstudywashcoohioearly1800s

The only problem is the PDF does not contain a tax list that I found in the Washington County Historical Society archives Box 27 of their court records:  It is handwritten: A List of Taxables for the Township of Salem and Marietta for the year 1805 in two columns. Solomon Goss is listed with a 40 after his name under Salem Twp.

List of Taxables for Salem and Marietta townships 1805

List of Taxables for Salem and Marietta townships 1805

Solomon Goss is under Salem Twp. 1805

Solomon Goss is under Salem Twp. 1805

I continued in the next post titled: John and Lydia Spracklin’s Life in Knox County Ohio, published March 25, 2013. where I describe the 1825 Tax Duplicate, 1830 U.S. census, 1835 Tax Duplicate record with more of the 1835, 1836 and 1837 tax record. I then show the 1840 U.S. census and the 1850 U.S. Census that covers the Spracklins settling in Knox Co., Ohio.

I suggest that you click the links to these published posts and review them. They will give you a total picture of the Goss family and also of Lydia and John Spracklin.

At the top of this blog are PAGES in a drop down menu that present a table of contents of posts written for each surname and some family groups.  This will help you to focus your search. Solomon Goss and Olive’s children have their own page and posts that have been published.

Posted in Daniel Goss & Lydia Ackley, John Andrews Spracklin & Lydia Goss, Levi Goss and Sophia Rummerfield, Marietta, Mary Goss, Noah Goss, Ohio Research trips 2011 and 2007, Olive Scott Goss, The Wife, Solomon Goss, Solomon Goss (Jr.) and Polly Coburn Devol, Washington County, Washington County Historical Society, Washington County Library Local History and Genealogy Annex | Tagged , | Leave a comment