The Family of Solomon and Polly Goss!

Solomon Goss (Jr.)  was the 4th child and a second son of Solomon Goss and Olive (Scott) Goss.  He was about 6+ years old when his father left Luzerne County, Pennsylvania and headed west to Ohio.

The use of the junior with his name is only to him to keep him separate from his father Solomon Goss senior.  I have seen it a couple of times in written documents where they are designated in this manner.

Solomon Goss, the son, was born 5 May 1788 in Pennsylvania.   I do not have any bible or birth documents that give proof of these birth dates for Solomon’s children.  In some cases it is due to the destruction of records because of the Revolutionary war and the land squabbles in Pennsylvania.  I have tried to find these types of documents but so far I have not been successful. Instead I have relied on those who have gone before me like Flora Montanye Osborn did back in the 1950’s.  (She is in the list of categories to the right where I have written about her articles.)

He must have made an agreement with his father about 1815 to stay on the land in Washington County, Ohio.  He appears only as a witness on deeds involving his other siblings regarding the land in Knox County, Ohio.

Solomon Goss (Jr.) married on the 19th of November 1812 to Polly Devol (Mary Coburn Devol).

S. Goss and P. Devol Marriage

Polly was the daughter of Gilbert Devol Jr. and Mary Coburn.  Polly was born 5 July 1795 in Marietta, Washington Co., Ohio.  The Devol’s were a very large family and of some importance in the Marietta area.  Polly’s father Gilbert Devol was a son of Gilbert Devol Sr. and Anne.  Her mother was the daughter of Asa Coburn and Rhoda Baker.  I will talk more about the Devol family in a later post and share what I do know and give some ideas for seeking more information.

Marriage Book 1

Source Marriage:  There are several sources for Washington County marriages. 

1) Ohio Marriages, Recorded in County Courts Through  1820: An Index, compiled and published by the Ohio Genealogical Society, 1996. The Goss listings are on pages 405-106.  

 2) Washington County, Ohio Marriages, 1789-1840, by Bernice Graham, Elizabeth S. Cottle and sponsored by the Marietta Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution in Washington County.  Goss names are on pg. 119-120.   This book is also at the FHL #977.198 V2g. 

3)  Washington County Marriage Records, Probate Court of Washington County, V1-3, Marietta, Ohio FHL#0941958.  NOTE: The Courthouse in Washington County has the books in a special room next door to the Probate Office where you get permission to research.  These records are copies of the books not the originals.

Washington County Courthouse, Marrietta, Ohio

The children of Solomon Goss and Polly [Coburn Devol] Goss:

1.  Eliza Goss born 4 Sep 1813  in Washington County, Ohio and died Sept. 1892.  She married a George Sawtell.

Line 32, 657, 686, George Sawtell, 45, M, Farmer, 7000, England, M. Eliza Sawtell, 36, F, born Ohio, M. John Sawtell, 18, M, Farmer, born Virginia, S. William Sawtell, 16, M, Farmer, Virginia, S. George F. Sawtell, 14, M, Virginia, S. Mary Sawtell, 12, F, Virginia, S. Gilbert Sawtell, 10, M, Virginia, S. Samuel Sawtell, 9, M, Virginia, S. Henry Sawtell, 9, M, Virginia, S. Ann Sawtell, 7, F, Virginia, S. Loisa Sawtell, 5, F, Virginia, S.  (next page) James Sawtell, 3, M Virginia.  Ellen Sawtell, 1, F, Virginia.

Source:  1850 U.S. Federal Census, 44th District, Ohio, Virginia, Sept 5, 1850, B. Kelley, NARA Film M432_966; page 46B; Image 99, Note:  This area of the 44th District is now in West Virginia in the county of Ohio.

UPDATE:  August 26, 2012 – A descendant of this family informed the writer of this blog, that Eliza was formerly named “Elizabeth.”  That the name Sawtell had and “e” on the end before it was dropped.  “George Sawtell was from Somersetshire, England and came with his father in 1820 at the age of 16 in a sailing vessell to America.  They were out of sight of land for 7 weeks.”  Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information and I will be happy to connect you.

2.  Wesley Goss 16 March 1815 in Washington County, Ohio and died 10 October 1896 in Spencer, Clay Co., Iowa. He married Elizabeth Evans before 1837.  Elizabeth was born 26 October 1816 very close to the Canadian border or maybe in Vermont?  She died 28 July 1901 in Spencer, Clay Co., Iowa.  Both are buried in the Riverside Cemetery in Clay County, Iowa.  They had 11 children.  Wesley was even more restless than his father moving around Iowa a great deal.  I will discuss him in a separate post.

3.  Harriet Melissa Goss was born 9 March 1817 in Washington County, Ohio and died 12 December 1880 in Henry County, Iowa.  She  married a James W. Maynard.  According to the Iowa Gravestones Project online, Harriett is buried in Burge Cemetery, Henry Co., Iowa. There is a photo of the tombstone.

Line 217, 217 James W. Maynard, 40 M, Physician, 1000, Ohio. Harriett Maynard, 35 F. Emily Maynard, 12, F, Ohio. Olive Maynard, 11, F, Ohio, Marian, M, Iowa, James W., 3, M, Iowa, James M. Hare 1, M, Iowa.

Source:  1850 U.S. Federal Census, New London, Henry Co., Iowa, August 24, 1850 by [D.B. Post], NARA Film M432_184, page 174B, Image 92,

4.  Gilbert Devol Goss  was born 28 September 1820 and died in about October of 1838 in Washington County, Ohio.  He was only 18 when he died.  He didn’t marry.

5. Milton Goss was born 29 December 1823 in Washington County, Ohio.  Date of death unknown.

6.  Solomon Goss (III) was born the 22 of June, 1825.  He was a twin.  Unfortunately he did not survive and died in July 1825.

7.  Olive Goss was born the 22 of June, 1825.  The other twin.  She died in July 1825 as well.

8.  Mary Adaline Goss was born 15 August 1826 in probably Fearing Township, Washington County, Ohio.  She probably died before the 1850 census was enumerated for Henry Co. because her husband and children were living with her father Solomon Goss and family in 1850.  She married a Jacob Hare on 6 October 1846.  They had at least two children:  Solomon B. and James.  Later little James would be living with the sister Harriett in Virginia Iowa – See Harriett’s section above.

This link for the IA GenWeb Project and lists Henry County marriages 1830-1850 and has Harriett’s marriage which would need to be checked with the actual records at the courthouse:

9.  Leroy Swormstedt Goss was born 7 September 1828 in Fearing Township, Washington County, Ohio.  My information has his death in May of 1851 probably in Iowa, however, he is not showing in the Mortality Schedules and in the 1850 census??

10.  Terry Goss was born about 1828 in Ohio according to the 1850 census for Henry Co., Iowa.  Terry is a mystery.  I cannot find him in any census after the 1850?  Could his name “Terry” be a nickname?

Note:  Terry and Daniel Goss are listed as being on the McCully Wagon Train to Oregon in 1853.  Terry would have been 25 years old.  Daniel would be 23, certainly old enough to go on an adventure.   There is a book available for sale at the website link and a list of the members of the wagon train.

11.  Daniel Goss was born 18 November 1830 in Washington County, Ohio and probably in Fearing township because his father was there in the 1830 Census.  He is found in the “History of Henry County” page 653 in New London as a carpenter in 1879.  This history is at Internet Archive.

Daniel is listed in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census for Henry Co. with his father and mother.

I have found in the census for 1860 in Minnesota a Daniel Goss that I think is this Daniel.  I did not have his wife or children in my records so this is an interesting development and when you compare it with the other information it gets more interesting and I get this feeling that if Daniel did go on the wagon train, why is he back in Iowa in 1854?  Did something happen?

Page 231, Line 38, 2015, 1867, Daniel Gofs, 29, M, Carpenter, $300, born Ohio. Mary J. Gofs, 28, F, born Vt. Warren D. Gofs, 7, M, Iowa. pg. 232, L. A. Gofs, 3/12, M, Minnesota.

Source:  1860 U.S. Federal Census for Minneapolis, Hennepin Co., Minnesota, 4th Ward, enumerated [Oct] 7th, 1860,by Wm. L. Chapman, pg. 231 and 232, NARA Film M653_570, pg. 941, Image 498, FHL#803570,

There is a Daniel Goss in the 1854 Iowa State Census for New London, Henry Co., Iowa with 1 male, 2 females in the family, at   The statistic are not quite right but if you compare the other census you begin to see a trend.

In the 1870 U.S. Federal Census for New London Henry County, Iowa

Line 21, 341, 323, Goss, Daniel, 38, M, W, Carpenter, $800, $550, Ohio. Goss, Mary J, 36, F, W, Keeping house, Canada, father of foreign birth, Goss, Warren J, 14, M, W, at. home, Iowa. Goss, Lena, A, 10, F, W, at home, Minnesota. Goss, Nella, 6, 7, W, Iowa.

Source:  1870 U.S. Federal Census, New London, Henry Co., Iowa, pg. 40, P.O. Mt. Pleasant, 27 July 1870 by Mason Bayles, #299. NARA Film M593_395, pg. 299A, Image 603, FHL# 545894,

12.  Homer Goss was born 13 November 1838 (maybe 1837) in Ohio.  Homer’s story is a little sad.  His sister Harriett applied to the court 4 May 1868 requesting that a guardian be appointed for her brother “…a Lunatic.”  As a result a John P. Grantham was appointed his guardian.  Homer appears with his parents in the 1860 census which I will discuss in a later post.  Who is this Mr. Grantham?

Source:  Probate Court, Henry Co., Iowa, Guardianship of Homer Goss, Lunatic, May 4, 1868, Vol. J, pgs. 484, 492, 512 FHL#964926.   

This child is suspect:

13.  Mary Goss was born abt 1842/43 in Iowa. Note:   Polly the mother would be 44 years old so I am doubting this is her child?  She is the last one listed for the family in the 1850 Henry Co., Iowa census for Solomon Goss? I do not know her relationship to the family?   See below.

The Census

The first census that really shows Solomon Goss (Jr.) is the 1830 Federal Census for Fearing, Washington, Ohio.  Even though it is statistical you can try to fit the family members to the census.

        • FWMales Under 5 – 1  (Could be Leroy)
        • FWMales 5-9 – 1   (Probably Wesley but he would be 15 or Gilbert Devol?)
        • FWMales 40-49 – 1  (Solomon)
        • FWFemales under 5 – 1 (Mary A.)
        • FWFemales 10-14 – 1  (Harriett)
        • FWFemales 15-19 – 1  (Eliza)
        • FWFemales 30-39 – 1 (Polly the mother)
        • FWPersons under 20: 5
        • FW Persons 20-49: 7
        • Total 7

Source:  1830 U.S. Federal Census, Fearing, Washington, Ohio, pg. 354, NARA Roll M19-141, FHL #0337952.

Here is the statistics for the 1840 U.S. Federal Census for Hardin County, Ohio for Solomon Goss.  Please notice that he left Washington County, Ohio and moved to Hardin County, Ohio.  This census proved harder to fit the family to the statistics and I am not sure I did a a very good job!

        • FWMales Under 5 – 1  (Homer would be 2 years old.)
        • FWMales 5 thru 9 – 1  (Daniel but I have him at 10 years?)
        • FWMales 10-14 – 1   ( Terry Goss be 12, Leroy would be 12)
        • FWMales 50-59 – 1   (Solomon head of this family)
        • FWFemales 10-14 – 1  (Mary Adaline would be 14 years)
        • FWFemales 15-19 – 1   ????
        • FWFemales 40-59 – 1   (Polly Devol mother and wife)
        • FWPerson under 20 – 5
        • FWPerson 20-49 – 1
        • Total 7

Source: 1840 U.S. Federal Census, Dudley, Hardin County, Ohio, Roll #401, Page 153, FHL#0020167,

The following information from the 1850 U.S. Federal for Solomon Goss.

Line 20, 79, 79, Solomon Goss, 62, M, Farmer, 1500, Ohio. Mary Goss, 51, F, Ohio. Terry 22, M, farmer, Ohio. Daniel Goss, 20, M, farmer, Ohio. Homer Goss, 13, M, Ohio. Jacob Hare, 30, M. Carpenter, Ohio. Solomon B. Hare, 2 M, Iowa. James, 6/12, M, Iowa. Rachel Barnett, 16, F, Ohio. Mary Goss 7, F, Iowa.

Source:  1850 U.S. Federal Census, New London, Henry Co., Iowa, pg. 164, NARA Roll #M432_184,

Please note that I made a mistake in the last post titled “Mary Follows her Brother Solomon Goss to Iowa!” regarding the 1850 Census.  I made the correction in the post.  I had Mary living with her brother and she wasn’t.  The correct information for the 1850 Census for Solomon Goss (Jr.) is indicated above.


I have had the good fortune to visit the Family History Library in Salt Lake City on several occasions and I discovered a source for this family that is reflected above in the children’s information.  I have added the census to it and I will let you decide.

Source:  Goss Family & Other Files – Philip Goss immigrant ancestor, born 1664, LDS Film #940938 Items 4-5)

This is a exchange of letters and family histories regarding the Goss, Devol, Spracklin and Cooley surnames and others around 1970-1973 with various repositories in Washington Co., Ohio. 

The information I have shared here on Solomon Goss and Polly Devol’s children and Wesley Goss was contained in the family history of the “Goss-Reynolds Family Genealogy” a part of this series of correspondences. It was written by a Gertrude Smith, of Pittsburgh, who was the daughter of Lois (Goss) Smith, a great-granddaughter of Polly.  The history was donated by a Robert S. McCargar whose paternal grandmother was Addie (Goss) McCargar.  More of this file will be shared in the appropriate place in future posts.

page 1 of the Goss-Reynolds History: 

Solomon Goss, Jr., married Nov. 19, 1812 [Mt.Harmon] [Point Harmar] O., to Mary Colburn Devol.  Died Nov. 2, 1864. Mary Colburn Devol – Born July 5, 1795, died April 1865. 


Born Died Married
Eliza Goss Sept. 4, 1813 Sept. 1892 George Sawtell
Wesley Mar. 16, 1815 Oct. 1896 Elizabeth Evans
Harriet Melissa Mar. 9, 1817 Dec. 1880 Jas. W. Maynard
Gilbert Devol Sep. 28, 1820 Oct. 1838
Milton Dec. 29, 1823
Solomon 3rd June 22, 1825 July 1825 Twin
Olive June 22, 1825 July 1825 Twin
Mary Adaline Aug. 15, 1826 July 1851 Mr. Hare
Leroy Swarmstedt Sep. 7, 1828 May 1851
Homer Nov. 13, 1838
Daniel Nov. 18, 1830

Gertrude Smith does not give her sources.  Mr. McCargar thought it was probably her mother Lois (Goss) Smith and the sister Edith (Goss) Crary who provided the information. Terry is not mentioned in their list.  Mary Goss, the 7 year old, is also not listed although they are in the 1850 Census with Solomon Goss and Polly. You can compare what I have above with what is listed by Mrs. Smith.

Warning:  My interest in Solomon Goss (Jr.) and his family was to see if he would lead me to more information about his father and mother Solomon and Olive (Scott) Goss.  I do not claim that I know this family well and the research is by far not done to my complete satisfaction, so please take what I have written and doublecheck it and draw your own conclusions.

In the next posts I will describe more of my finds regarding Solomon Goss (Jr.).

About BJ MacDonald

Interested in travel, really into genealogy and researching my family history, classic novels and movies, fantasy and science fiction, photography, history and more... Here is a tip. Make sure you are commenting on the blog you were visiting and the post you were interested in. My blogs are listed by hovering over my pictures and clicking. Clicking one of them will take you back to the correct blog. You can try me here:
This entry was posted in Asa Coburn and Rhoda Baker, Daniel Goss, Devol Surname, Dudley Township, Eliza Goss and George Sawtell, FAMILY SURNAMES MAIN LINE GOSS Surname, Flora Montanye Osborn 1869 to 1951, Gilbert Devol Goss, Gilbert Devol Sr. and Jr., Hardin County, Harriet Melissa Goss and James W. Maynard, Henry County, Homer Goss, Iowa, Leroy Swormstedt Goss, Luzerne County, Mary Adaline Goss and Jacob Hare, Mary Goss, Milton Goss, New London, Pennsylvania, Solomon & Olive Goss (Twins), Solomon Goss (Jr.) and Polly Coburn Devol, Terry Goss, Updates & Corrections, Wesley Goss and Elizabeth Evans and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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