I need to have several Nanos on one USB port. They will have separate power, so power constraints won't be a concern. I need them all to go through the same serial port. They will never get anything sent to them, and should never send data simultaneously. Each one is connected to a switch, and upon pressing the switch, will send an 8-digit serial number over serial. I want to have a VB.NET application which listens over this shared serial COM for numbers, and collects them all, displaying them in a history list. Can this work?
For a USB topology to operate one needs a USB controller which knows about all the different USB protocols necessary to communicate with all the different USB peripherals (this is why a USB controller is usually a fully capable computer) all connected through a USB hub. It is unlikely a USB network could be created using only peripheral USB devices which were wired directly together.
To communicate between several Arduinos and a computer it would be much easier to use a serial bus made for multiple drops like RS485. There are many RS485 to USB converters available like this one for computers that do not have an RS485 port.