Christopher Memminger
Historical Figure
Nationality: United States (Confederate States, 1861-65; born in the Holy Roman Empire)
Date of Birth: 1803
Date of Death: 1888
Cause of Death: Natural causes
Religion: Episcopalianism
Occupation: Lawyer, politician
Spouse: Mary Wilkinson (d. 1875)
Sarah Wilkinson
Children: Twelve (four predeceased him)
Political Party: Democratic Party
Political Office(s): Confederate States Representative from South Carolina,
CS Secretary of the Treasury
Fictional Appearances:
The Guns of the South
POD: January 17, 1864
Type of Appearance: Contemporary reference
Nationality: Confederate States

Christopher Gustavus Memminger (January 9, 1803 – March 7, 1888) was a German-born American politician and a founding father of the Confederate States, serving as President Jefferson Davis' first Treasury Secretary.

Memminger was born in Vaihingen, Würtemberg. His father had died in battle when he was only a month old. His mother moved to Charleston, South Carolina, but she died of yellow fever in 1807. After this unfortunate start, Thomas Bennett, a prominent attorney and future governor of South Carolina, took Christopher in, and providing an education for him. Memminger became a successful lawyer himself. Memminger entered state politics, leading the opposition to the nullifiers during the Nullification Crisis of the 1830s.

By the time of the election of Abraham Lincoln to the presidency in 1860, Memminger had grown convinced that secession was necessary. When South Carolina did secede, he was asked to write the Declaration of the Immediate Causes Which Induce and Justify the Secession of South Carolina from the Federal Union. When Jefferson Davis formed his cabinet, he appointed Memminger to Secretary of the Treasury. His efforts to fund the Confederate States government during the American Civil War forced him to set aside all of his economic ideals. He adopted fiat currency and income taxation.

Memminger resigned in July 1864. He was pardoned in 1866, and rebuilt his legal practice.

Christopher Memminger in The Guns of the South[]

Christopher Memminger was the Confederate Treasury Secretary in 1864, when America Will Break first offered to sell AK-47s to the C.S. When General Robert E. Lee learned the incredibly generous terms AWB was offering for the repeaters, he found himself tempted to go to the Treasury Department and demand of Memminger if he knew what an impossibly good bargain the Treasury was actually getting.[1]


  1. The Guns of the South, pgs. 72-7, mpb.
Political offices
Preceded by
Position established
Member of the Provisional Confederate States Congress
from South Carolina

Succeeded by
Position abolished
Preceded by
Position established
Confederate States Secretary of the Treasury
Succeeded by
George Trenholm
Political offices
(The Guns of the South)
Preceded by
Position established
Confederate States Secretary of the Treasury
Succeeded by
Julian Hartridge