Following his graduation in 1820 from West Point, Lowndes was stationed at Fort Moultrie; he served in the army until 1830. He had a plantation on the North Santee River and each spring returned to New York where in 1860 he resided permanently. He married Gertrude Livingston of New York in 1826.
This miniature has traditionally been attributed to Fraser, although stylistically it does not resemble Fraser's typical portraits. The format of the small locket was only occasionally used by Fraser, and the placement of the figure high upon the ivory and the extremely fine stippling and the gray-blue tones are without precedent in Fraser's work. Instead, the portrait may have been painted in New York where Lowndes is known to have spent part of each year. Lowndes' reticent expression and thin, narrow face have parallels in Inman's other portraits.
This text is adapted from Martha Severens "The Miniature Portrait Collection of the Carolina Art Association" published by the Carolina Art Association, 1984