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Dictionary of Wisconsin History

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Term: Goss, Benjamin Franklin 1823 - 1893

Definition: merchant, ornithologist, b. Lancaster, N.H. He moved to Milwaukee in 1841, and in 1842 settled in Pewaukee, where he farmed for several years. In 1855 he left the state and spent several years engaged in various businesses in Illinois, Iowa, Ohio, and Kansas. During the Civil War he served as a captain in the 9th Kansas Cavalry (1862-1865), and in 1866 returned to Pewaukee, where he established a merchandising business. With his business a success, Goss devoted most of his time to his primary interest, the natural sciences, and especially the study and collection of birds' eggs and nests. He traveled widely throughout the U.S., and gathered a collection that represented 720 species of birds. The collection was donated principally to the Milwaukee Public Museum, of which Goss was honorary curator of ornithology and zoology. A Republican, Goss was state assemblyman (1855), and was again serving in the assembly at the time of his death. A. W. Schorger, Some Wis. Naturalists (Madison, 1946); Waukesha Freeman, July 13, 1893, Feb. 25, 1939; Milwaukee Journal, May 1, 1937.

[Source: Dictionary of Wisconsin biography]

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Goss, Benjamin Franklin 1823 - 1893

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