Adrian Woll

Adrian Woll was born at Saint Germain en Laye in France on the 2nd of December 1795 and as an 18 year old volunteer he participated in the defence of Paris in Napoleon's army in 1814. Commissioned as a Sous-Lieutenant on the 14th of April 1814 he was assigned to the 4th battalion of the 10th legion of the national guard and received a further promotion to Capitaine on the April the 17th. He remained in French service until the end of 1815 when he apparently deserted and emigrated to the United States of America. Enlisting in the United States Army he rapidly rose to Sergeant Major and later was appointed as an adjutant to General Winfield Scott. He saw service as a lieutenant colonel during Mexico's war for independence in 1816 and afterwards settled in Mexico as a civilian until independence was won from Spain. In 1823 he applied to the Mexican authorities for reinstatement as a lieutenant colonel and this was eventually agreed in 1826 when he was accorded the rank of a retired lieutenant colonel and assigned as an Aide de Camp to General JosÚ Lobato. Following an uprising in Mexico city in November 1828 in which Woll participated in the suppression, he was appointed to the active list as a lieutenant colonel on the 22nd of July 1829 and saw further service against Spanish forces the following year and was promoted to full colonel in September. In 1832 he was appointed as the second in command of of General  Jose de la Cuesta's division and captured the city of Zamora followed by his successful relief of the besieged city of Guadalajara on the 13th of November 1832. For these  achievements he was promoted to Brigadier General. He saw further service under General Santa Anna against the Spaniards until the conclusion of hostilities in the summer of 1835.

Appointed as divisional commander of the 2nd division, he eventually arose to command the army of the North. He did not see service during the Mexican-American war of 1846-1848 haven taken a leave of absence in France. Curiously enough this distinguished general was then dismissed for desertion for not renewing his permission to extend his leave! Eventually returning to Mexico in 1853 he was reinstated and appointed as as Divisional General with effect from the 25th of December 1853 followed by his assignment as Commander in Chief of the Army of the Interior. In 1855 he was appointed as Governor and Commandant General of the Departments of Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon and Coahuila. He took another leave of absence to France in 1855 before returning in 1857 as Commandant General of the Department of Michoacan. Rising to the command of the first corps he retired in 1860.

He was a member of the deputation or "Comisi˛n Mexicana" that sailed to Europe to offer the crown of Mexico to Erzherzog Maximilian of Austria who appointed General Woll to serve as his Adjutant.

In the middle of 1865, he was dispatched to France on a special mission by the Emperor Maximilian and following the fall of the empire, he remained in France, dying in Montauban at the age of 80 in 1875.

Back to the Mexican Adventure Biography Index