Sir Charles Wager was Admiral and First Lord of the Admiralty between 1733 and 1742. A naval officer and politician, Wager was born in Rochester, Kent, and was apprenticed to a Quaker merchant captain of New England, named John Hull of Barnstable, Massachusetts. He served chiefly in the Mediterranean, becoming Captain in 1692, Rear-Admiral in 1707 and eventually Commander-in-Chief in the West Indies. He is best remembered for a daring exploit aboard the Expedition, known as 'Wager's Action', which delivered him victory over the Spanish treasure fleet at Cartagena on 28 May 1708. He was knighted in 1709.
On 8 December 1691 he married Martha Earning (1664/6-1748), daughter of Anthony Earning, a Commonwealth navy captain, but they had no children. Wager is buried in Westminster Abbey, where a monument to his memory by Peter Scheemakers was erected in 1747 against the north wall of the transept.