Charles Weinberger was born in 1861 as the illegitimate son of the Viennese stage performer and operetta singer Helene Weinberger. He started studying composition and instrumentation in Vienna in 1880, among others under Alexander Leitermeyer and Joseph Sulzer, son of the Viennese chief cantor Salomon Sulzer. He enjoyed his first successes around 1885 with the waltz Äolsharfenklänge and in 1887 with the operetta Pagenstreiche based on a libretto by his stepfather Hugo Wittmann. Together with Carl Millöcker, Franz von Suppé and Carl Michael Ziehrer, he was one of the most successful Viennese operetta composers and also wrote over two hundred lieder. He was co-founder of the Union dramatischer Autoren und Komponisten, the Gesellschaft der Autoren und Komponisten und Musikverleger and the Genossenschaft der dramatischen Schriftsteller und Komponisten Wiens. In the 1920s his works fell increasingly out of fashion and were largely forgotten. Weinberger was no longer able to earn a living from them and was awarded an honorary pension by the city of Vienna instead. A year earlier he had been given the title professor by Federal President Michael Hainisch to mark his fortieth anniversary as a composer.
After the annexation to the German Reich in 1938, the Culture Department of the city of Vienna cancelled his pension, stating that Weinberger had supported the Dollfuß regime and that his "Aryan" lineage was not established. After Weinberger brought proof of his mother's "Aryan" lineage, the city of Vienna awarded him a monthly "grace payment". Weinberger died on 11 November 1939 in Vienna. His widow and fourth wife Käthe Weinberger, née Susmann was considered Jewish by the Nazis, although she had left the Jewish community in August 1938. To survive she applied to the municipal welfare department for continued payment of her husband's pension, but the application was rejected. For a lifetime pension of 100 Reichsmarks per month she offered to give her husband' entire musical estate to the city of Vienna, which the Stadtbibliothek (now Wienbibliothek) and the Historisches Museum (now Wien Museum) took over in 1941. The library paid 1,150 Reichsmarks and the museum 600 Reichsmarks instead of the agreed pension. These amounts were transferred to a frozen account. Käthe Weinberger escaped deportation and survived in Vienna.
In 2001 the Vienna Restitution Commission recommended the return of Charles Weinberger's estate. In 2002 the successors of Charles and Käthe Weinberger waived their right and left the objects with the two institutions.