The Susquehannah Company set up several townships in 1769 for the 200 settlers in the Wyoming Valley. These townships were Plymouth, Hanover, Wilkes-Barre, Kingston and Pittston.
Philip Goss IV and his sons Nathaniel and Comfort appear in the list for the 200 settlers. I have written about their involvement in a past post titled Philip Goss IV sets his eyes on the Wyoming Valley published Nov. 26, 2017.
Please be advised that each history book, of the area, has their own version of the number of settlers. I am using Mr. Harvey’s History of Wilkes-Barre.
We know that William Walsworth, a proprietor in the Susquehannah Company, gave Philip Goss IV one right in the Company in April of 1770 for land in the Wyoming Valley. On 11 June 1771, Philip Goss sold Lot #56 in Becket, in the Berkshires, to a Benjamin Chamberlin of Colchester. He also received a letter of dismissal from the Becket Church in this same year. So Philip was closing up business in the Berkshires and also establishing himself by becoming involved with the business of the settlers and the Susquehannah Company by collecting taxes, helping to build roads and he and sons were trying to get a government established in the area.
In June of 1770 there was a list of 283 names of which Philip and Nathaniel Goss were included.
Among the original early Wyoming documents now in the possession of the Wyoming Historical and Geological Society is “A List of the Proprietors of the Five Townships, 17th June, 1770.” This list of 283 names, which was prepared at Wilkes-Barre on or about the date indicated, is presumed to comprise the names of all the proprietors of The Susquehanna Company then on the ground here. The following is a copy of the same, and it is now printed for the first time. (In the original the word “Comtee” is affixed to the names of those who composed the “Committee of Settlers,” mentioned on pg. 652.) (Vol. II, pgs. 658 and 659)
Goss, Nathaniel (no Seward or Scott)
According to Mr. Harvey there is another document in 1771 that is a list of the names of 65 adventurers and Philip Goss was included.
From an original unpublished document entitled “List of Settlers, 1771– from 15 July to August 19th,” partly in the handwriting of Maj. Ezekiel Peirce, and party in that of Captain Butler and now preserved (Wyom H&G) we learn the names of the Yankee adventurers and their associates who arrived here on July 8th. They numbered sixty-five, and were as follows: Goss, Philip. (Volume II, page 694)
Nathaniel Goss was at Fort Durkee, Wilkes-Barre, in May, 1770 (see page 649), and in the list of Susquehanna proprietors made up in June 1770 (see page 658), the names of Philip and Nathaniel appear. Philip Goss was a member of the party commanded by Capt. Zebulon Butler which came to Wilkes-Barre in July, 1771, to besiege the Pennamites in Fort Wyoming. Nathaniel Goss joined the party a few weeks later. (See pages 694 and 702.) Prior to March, 1772, Philip Goss had become a proprietor in the township of Plymouth, and was a member of the “Settlers Committee” for that township. In March or April, 1772, he was sent express to Connecticut on business for the settlers—as is shown by an original paper now in the possession of The Wyoming Historical and Geological Society.* From 1772 till 1776 Philip Goss, Sr., and his family resided in the township of Plymouth. (Page 999 Vol. II.)
Source: A History of Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, from its first beginnings to the present time including chapters of newly discovered early Wyoming Valley history, together with many biographical sketches and much Genealogical Material, Begun by Oscar Jewell Harvey, A.M. and completed by Ernest Gray Smith. These volumes are online at Internet Archive for viewing and downloading.
After 1772 things settled down in the Wyoming Valley and the Pennamites withdrew. The land squabbles were not solved; however, and things would erupt again between the Connecticut Settlers and the Pennsylvanians over the land in the area. Because the conflict is so complicated, I suggest that you seek out articles about the Yankee-Pennamite wars online like at say, Wikipedia or in the history books I cite.
This fighting over the land meant that the settlers had to go back and forth from the Wyoming Valley when things got tough and difficult and then return to their former homes wherever that might be, such as Connecticut or even New York.
The Susquehannah Company voted at meetings on many occasions to demand the proprietors honor their shares and protect their lands. The company was determined to settle the area and needed the settlers to be “on the ground,” actually be there farming their land.
In 1773, Col. Zebulon Butler made a list of those in the Plymouth District:
By an enrollment of the resident inhabitants of the valley, made in 1773, in the handwriting of Col. Zebulon Butler, the following persons are known to have been settlers in Plymouth: Noah Allen, Peter Ayres, Capt. Prince Alden, John Baker, Isaac Bennett, Daniel Brown, Naniad Coleman, Aaron Dean, Stephen Fuller, Joseph Gaylord, Nathaniel Goss, Comfort Goss, Timothy Hopkins, William Leonard, Jesse Leonard, Samuel Marvin, Nicholas Manville, Joseph Morse, James Nesbitt, Abel Pierce, Timothy Pierce, Jabez Roberts, Samuel Sweet, John Shaw, David Whittlesey and Nathaniel Watson.
Source: History of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania with Biographical Selections, H.C. Bradsby, Editor, S.B. Nelson & Co. 1893, pg 634 to 641 and page 635. Available at Internet archive for viewing and downloading. Mr. Bradsby has a list of the first 200 or more settlers. I will refer to his book in later posts.
Plymouth Township – This is one of the original five townships formed by the Susquehannah Company….”By an enrollment of the resident inhabitants of the valley, made in 1773, in the handwriting of Col. Zebulon Butler, the following persons are known to have been settlers in Plymouth: …Nathaniel Goss, Comfort Goss.
Source: History of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties, PA. with Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of Some of their Prominent Men and Pioneers, W.W. Munsell & Co., 1880, page 348. This is at Internet Archive for viewing and downloading.
On the day before Christmas 24 December 1773, the settlers sent, one of many, Petitions to the General Assembly in Hartford in the Colony of Connecticut about their distressed circumstances and asked that a county be erected. This is called the (194) Petition of the Inhabitants of Kingston. It was signed by many of the settlers including Philip, Nathaniel and Solomon Goss. Source: Vol. V Susquehannah Papers, 1772-1774, Edited by Robert J. Taylor, pg. 215.
Finally in January of 1774 the Connecticut Assembly granted local government and created the Town of Westmoreland. It was attached to Litchfield Co., Connecticut and it encompassed all of the Delaware Co. lands. The town boundary extended only 15 miles from Wilkesbarre. It did not include the West Branch Twps. By 1775 the township was made into a probate district using the name Westmoreland. The militia of the township was formed into the 24th regiment of the Connecticut militia. In 1776 it was enacted that the town of Westmoreland, lying on the west side of the river Delaware in this State, should be a distinct county.
If you do any research in the area, you will learn that the documents are under Westmoreland Twp./Co. and connected to Litchfield Co. in Connecticut. A lot of information is at the Connecticut State Library and the Connecticut Historical Society.
*The Wyoming Historical and Geological Society is now the Luzerne County Historical Society in Wilkes-Barre, PA.