Swiss by birth, Jeremiah Theus was the most popular portrait painter to elite society in colonial South Carolina by the mid-eighteenth century. Like many artists of this period, he also taught drawing and did ornamental work and portrait painting in order to supplement his income. He prospered in Charleston and also traveled to the residences of his patrons, the region's wealthy planters. His sitter here is one of the younger of the three sons of Samuel and Mary Odingsell Jones of Charleston. Theus favored the simple oval-bounded format we see here, rendering the youth's fine clothing and robust features with straightforward painterly competence.