Like his younger brother, Thomas, Charles Cotesworth studied at Westminster, Christ Church College, Oxford and Middle Temple. Admitted to the Bar at Charleston in 1770, he became active in local affairs. In 1776 he served as an aide to General Washington at Brandywine and Germantown and, in 1780, was commander of Fort Moultrie during the British attack. In 1783 he was elevated to the rank of General. As a special envoy to France 1796 - 1797, he was involved in the X, Y, Z Affair. As a Federalist he was the unsuccessful candidate for Vice-President in 1800 and President in 1804 and in 1808. He was President General of the Society of Cincinnati 1805-1825.
Fraser held Revolutionary War Generals in high regard, and in his "Reminiscences" (1854) even described many of them. He authored the epitaph on Pinckney's memorial in St. Michael's Church, and noted, ". . . with all the accomplishments of the gentleman he combined the virtues of the patriot and the piety of the Christian." Because of its unusual painted oval format, the miniature may be a copy or a version of another work. The dark, purplish tones contribute to a somber, almost poignant expression. Two miniatures of Pinckney are listed in the account book for 1819.
This text is adapted from Martha Severens "The Miniature Portrait Collection of the Carolina Art Association" published by the Carolina Art Association, 1984