HISTORY NEBRASKA MANUSCRIPT FINDING AID
RG3206.AM: George A. Maston, 1849-1913
Lincoln, Lancaster County, Nebraska, and Missouri: Minister, teacher, barber
Size: One item
George A. Maston was born into slavery on a Virginia plantation in 1849. He adopted his master’s name, Masten, although he changed the spelling. Maston allegedly escaped into free territory when the Union Army passed through the area. Little is known of Maston’s family or his childhood years. As a young man, he learned the barber’s trade, and practiced this profession intermittently throughout his life. In 1873, Maston enrolled in Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio, at that time one of the few such institutions to admit African Americans. After leaving college in 1875, Maston taught school at various communities in Ohio and West Virginia, and became active in the affairs of the Methodist Church. He soon became a licensed minister and assisted with services at the several communities in which he was a schoolmaster. Maston also became involved in public speaking.
In 1879, Maston went to St. Louis, Missouri, where he practiced barbering at intervals when he was unable to secure teaching or ministerial positions. While in St. Louis, he married Eliza Dulan of that city on April 24, 1879, and the couple was to have two children, George L. and Ida M. In the same year, Maston and his wife moved to Union, Missouri, where he had secured a position as a teacher in the schools of that community. The family remained in Union for an undetermined period, and later moved to Sturgeon, Missouri, where Maston occupied a ministerial position. About 1901, Maston and his family moved to Lincoln, Nebraska, where he became pastor of the Newman Methodist Church. Maston served in this capacity for a number of years, and following his retirement in 1904, worked as a barber in the shop of George Hollinger at 16th and P in Lincoln. He remained a member of the Methodist Minister’s organization of Lincoln until his death in September of 1913.
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE
This collection consists of one item entitled, “An Historical Poem.” Rev. Maston delivered the poem at a conference held on March 10, 1904. The poem describes Maston’s arrival in Lincoln in 1901 and includes a plea by Maston for contributions to pay for his trip to a church conference in Topeka, Kansas.
Note: Various materials relating to George A. Maston’s life while living in Missouri are held by The State Historical Society of Missouri.
“An Historical Poem” by Rev. George A. Maston, March 10, 1904
African Americans — Nebraska
Clergy — Nebraska
Lancaster County (Neb.) — History
Lincoln (Neb.) — History
Maston, George A., 1849-1913
Revised KFK 12-1996
Revised TMM 10-26-2020