These Two Men of God

The Revs. James A. Alston (1923-1990) and Percel O. Alston (1925-1988) were sons of Rev. Robert James Alston (1895-1983) and his wife, Louise Josephine Alston nee Harrison (1898-1954). They’re also my great-uncles, brothers of my late maternal grandmother, Virginia Alston Braswell (1918-1992). I do not recall ever having met either of these men of God, but they certainly left a legacy for all.

Here are a few news items featuring them both:

Rev. James A. Alston Ordination Anniversary

Daily Press
Newport News, Virginia
17 Aug 1979, Fri • Page 20

1990 Obituary for Rev. James A. Alston

The Rev. James Arthur Alston, 66, a native of Norfolk, died July 2, 1990, in a hospital.
The Rev. Mr. Alston had retired as minister of Emanuel St. Mark’s United Church of Christ after 20 years. He was a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity.
Survivors include his wife, Marion F. Alston; a daughter, Gloria G. Alston of Petersburg, Va.; six sons, James A. Alston Jr. and Melford Alston, both of Saginaw, Daryl Alston, Joel Alston and Tony Alston, all of Richmond, and Lester Herbert of Germany; a sister, Virginia Braswell of Norfolk; four brothers, Stuart Alston and Alvin Alston, both of Norfolk, Robert Alston of Washington, D.C., and Alexander Alston of New York City; and 10 grandchildren.
The funeral will be conducted at 2 p.m. Saturday in Union United Church of Christ, Norfolk, by the Rev. William Crews. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery.
Riddick Funeral Service is handling arrangements.

Virginian-Pilot, The (Norfolk, VA) – July 6, 1990 Page D2
Copyright (c) 1990 The Virginian-Pilot Courtesy: Find-a-Grave

Rev. Percel O. Alston Delivers Savannah State Sermon

Alabama Tribune
Montgomery, Alabama
26 Aug 1955, Fri • Page 2

Rev. Percel O. Alson, 1964 UCC Promotion

The Pittsburgh Courier
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
27 Jun 1964, Sat • Page 16

Rev. Percel O. Alston and the Art Exhibit of 1965

Intelligencer Journal
Lancaster, Pennsylvania
16 Feb 1965, Tue • Page 11

Rev. Percel O. Alston, African Celebration, 1972

The Mercury
Pottstown, Pennsylvania
25 Nov 1972, Sat • Page 11

1988 Obituary of Rev. Percel O. Alston

The Montclair Times
Montclair, New Jersey
17 Nov 1988, Thu • Page 8

Both Revs. James and Percel Alston were connected the United Church Of Christ . This affiliation was via their father, Rev. Robert J. Alston, who later became a pastor at Harlem NYC’s Baptist House of Prayer.

Additional materials on Rev. Percel O. Alston are available at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Amistad Research Center, Alston, Percel O. papers, 1949-1989 | Amistad Research Center.

Remember to check news articles, old clippings and digitized records, for details on your ancestors. While nothing replaces interaction with the person, there is a fellowship in finding out about the lives and times of our ancestors and however they may have worshipped.

The Genealogy Situation Room

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