Left an orphan at age four, Memminger was raised by Governor Thomas Bennett, who taught him law. As a Unionist, Memminger spent four years in the South Carolina House of Representatives, but later served the Confederacy as Secretary of the Treasury 1861-1864. In 1854 he was appointed to the City of Charleston School Board and was instrumental in improving the quality of public education. In this portrait Fraser has convincingly rendered the structure of Memminger's face, and the end result is a perceptive likeness. Fraser was paid $50 for the miniature in 1823.
This text is adapted from Martha Severens "The Miniature Portrait Collection of the Carolina Art Association" published by the Carolina Art Association, 1984