The apostle James ( the son of Alphaeus), who is also called "Less" or "Younger," was a brother of the apostle Matthew and the son of Mary. Which Mary is not altogether certain though she seems to be the wife of one Cleopas (Cleophas), which may have been another or second name for Alphaeus.
James was a native of Capernaum (located on the northwestern shores of the Sea of Galilee in Israel.) It is believed that he was from the Jewish tribe of Levi, however, this is not certain.
Not much is known about the latter ministry of of this apostle, however, Aziz S. Atiya, in his "History of Eastern Christianity" says," The seeds of Syrian Christianity had been sown in Jerusalem during the Apostolic age and the contention has been made that the first bishop of the Syrian church was none other than St. James of the Twelve Apostles, identified as 'St. James the Less'."
It has also been said that James (son of Alphaeus) was stoned in Jerusalem for preaching Christ and buried by the Sanctuary.
The information above is compiled from the book "The Search for the Twelve Apostles" by William Steuart McBirnie Ph.D, Copyright 1973