“The artist has painted the red-coated British officer and Marion at right center, with a horse. Marion wears a plumed shako. His soldiers present an amusingly motley crew. Of special interest is the African American man behind the table, holding a small pan and, with his right hand, roasting sweet potatoes in the fire. The figure has been recently identified as Oscar Marion, a slave of Francis Marion who accompanied the General into war. While Oscar Marion is seen cooking the meal, Samuel Weaver’s pension application maintains that Weaver himself, a white soldier, was the one who cooked the meal. The makeshift table has a number of sweet potatoes on it, and Marion gestures toward them. During his lifetime, White executed several versions of the scene; similar paintings are held by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the South Caroliniana Library, Columbia, and the Chicago Historical Society.
White’s portrayal of the sweet potato meal was made into a mezzotint print by John Sartain in 1840 for the Apollo Association for the Promotion of the Fine Arts in the United States, a group that listed as one of its goals “the cultivation and diffusion of correct taste in the fine arts.”  The print was the first in a series of engravings made from American paintings that were distributed to the nearly one thousand association members. The image also appeared on Confederate banknotes issued in 1861 by South Carolina. The painting was exhibited at the National Academy of Design in 1837 and at the Apollo Gallery in 1838 and 1839. The exhibition catalogue described it this way:
After the business has been arranged, Marion invited the visitor to take dinner with him. The moment chosen by the Artist is when they approach the table, which was composed of pieces of bark, bearing a dinner of sweet potatoes. The expression of surprise on the countenances of the stranger and Marion’s men is finely expressed. The scenery is said to be perfectly characteristic of a South Carolina swamp; and, altogether, it may safely be pronounced one of the best pictures of American history ever produced in this country. ”