Henry Anthony Minton was born in Boston, Massachusetts on January 12, 1883. He was educated exclusively at Boston schools, attending first the Boston Latin School and then Harvard University. After graduating from Harvard College in 1903 with a bachelor of arts degree, he decided to study architecture at the Lawrence Scientific School, obtaining his degree just two years later, in 1905. Immediately upon graduation he worked as a draughtsman with the Associated Architects and later at the office of Kendall, Taylor and Stevens in Boston. However, Minton was to spend only one year on the east coast after graduating from Harvard. The tragedy of the San Francisco earthquake that occurred on April 18, 1906, presented an enormous rebuilding opportunity that lured Minton and other young architects to the city.
In San Francisco, he began working for J. W. Dolliver on the competition drawings for the Sonoma County Court House. Dolliver won the competition but in September of 1906, Minton moved to the office of William D. Shea, where he would remain until January of 1911. In that year he took a position with the City of San Francisco designing buildings for the auxiliary water-supply system, the garbage disposal system, the municipal railways and the tunnels. While working for the city, he managed to complete a few projects on his own, mainly residences and some docks on the waterfront. He would gradually build up his own practice and a life for himself in the city. In 1910, he married Julia Gallegos, with whom he would have four sons and three daughters. His son, John, who would later take over his practice, was born on April 1, 1916 in San Francisco.
Much of Minton's work was undertaken for two main clients: the Bank of Italy--later to become the Bank of America, led by A. P. Giannini--and the Catholic Church, specifically the San Francisco Archdiocese and various religious orders located in the Bay Area. During World War II, Minton also worked for the United States Navy designing a Pre-Flight School in California. Like many architects of the day, Minton did not work in a single style and his buildings range from the neo-Gothic to reinterpretations of Spanish Mission architecture. The main years of Minton's practice spanned the 1920s to the 1950s, during which collaborated with architect Wilton Smith on many projects. Henry Minton died on February 3, 1948, in San Francisco. His son, John G. Minton, continued the practice, designing additions to many of his father's buildings. John Minton died on August 25, 2001, in Greenbrae, California.