Quondam Exploration


  Discovering The Past In The Present  . . .               

George Goss "Coas" (ca 1728-  )  Revolutionary War Veteran

George "Coas" was born circa 1728 in Strasburg Germany.  (France now).... According to the information in the image below he was five feet 1 1/2 inches tall.   George lived in Northumberland Pennsylvania before 1776 and came to New Jersey at the break of the Revolutionary War.
It is my opinion that this particular George "Coas" is actually the son of Peter "Gafs" who died in Sussex New Jersey in 1769.   Peter mentions his oldest son George and youngest son Peter in his last will and testament. 
I believe it is very likely that George simply 'returned' to New Jersey when the threat of war was imminent.   It is also my opinion that George was likely an American Indian fighter.  He is older.   He is in his late 40's upon enlisting in the Continental Army, and likely has over twenty years fighting experience.  Unfortunately, records and documentary evidence is scarce before 1780, and almost non-existent before the French & Indian War. 
George spends about four years with the Continental Army.   When George comes (back) to New Jersey, he brings his young son Abraham with him.   Abraham is trained by his father to b- 'fifer'.   With the slim documentary evidence available to the modern researcher, it seen as though George may have had a hand in teaching 'others' to be 'fifers'.  Fifers were generally much younger than George, -  their were others who were in their 30s, but the 'older' fifers were not the norm.   George was also not very tall, that could explain his 'senior age' compared to other fifers.   I am of the opinion that George had a 'hands on' roll in training the younger men for fife and drum responsibilities while in service.
Fifers were important in battle because fifes could be heard above the noise associated with battle.  Fifes & drums were used to issue commands while in battle.   It was an earlier form of communication and a very effective one.
It is interesting to note that where-ever an English writer records Georges' last name, a "C" is used.  In German the letter 'G' has a 'k' or 'c' sound.  Refer to German alphabet and 'old' German Script here.  George likely spelled his name with a 'G', but an English scribe would have recorded it as a hard 'C' as that's what he would have 'heard'.

Long Time Neighbor Recounts His Memory of
George 'Gofs' in 1833 Letter

In 1796, George Gass and Peter Gass are listed as residents of East Buffalo Twp.  Additional residents in 1808 in East Buffalo were Martin Snook and Peter Snook, - both listed as possibly living on the 'Jenkins' place.  Also in 1808, John Snook who was married to Eve Christ lived in either East or West Buffalo... it's not clear which. 
In 1811, Elisabeth Snook daughter of Martin Snook married
Elijah Updike, one of the witnesses was Peter Snook, a possible brother of Elizabeth.
In 1812, Peter Snook, along with Henry Struble and Peter Struble (New Jersey Strubles??) are listed as being members of the militia.  Also in 1812, John Snook and his wife conveyed a lot for a school house in Union Twp. bounded by Jenkins.
Jacob "Gast" and William Snook are listed in West Buffalo Twp in 1796.
Philip Snook is listed as a resident of White Deer Twp. 
In 1829, Eve Snook, daughter of John Snook of West Buffalo marries Israel Zentmeyer.
George Goss listed above was born circa 1766.   He is likely the son of George "Coas", and brother of Abraham Goss, who like George Sr & George Jr is a 'fifer'.    Mathias Snook of Sussex New Jersey disappears from New Jersey circa mid 1770s.    A 'Mathias Snook' appears in Maryland, he too is a 'fifer'.