Adrián Woll
Adrián Woll was a French
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 soldier of fortune and mercenary
A mercenary, is a person who takes part in an armed conflict based on the promise of material compensation rather than having a direct interest in, or a legal obligation to, the conflict itself. A non-conscript professional member of a regular army is not considered to be a mercenary although he...

 who served as a general in the army of Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 during the Texas Revolution
Texas Revolution
The Texas Revolution or Texas War of Independence was an armed conflict between Mexico and settlers in the Texas portion of the Mexican state Coahuila y Tejas. The war lasted from October 2, 1835 to April 21, 1836...

 and the Mexican-American War.


Woll (1795–1875) was born in Saint Germain en Laye, about 10 kilometers, or 6 and 1/4 miles, west of Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, on December 2, 1795. His military career began in 1813, when he was 18, when he served as a private in the 2nd Guard Regiment in the defense of Paris against the enemies of Napoleon in 1814. By the time of the surrender of the city on March 31, 1814, he had been promoted to Sub Lieutenant and was transferred to the 4th Battalion, 10th National Guard Legion and promoted to Captain on April 17, 1814.

He emigrated to the United States of America and enlisted in the army as Sergeant Major and was appointed as Field Adjutant to General Winfield Scott. Later in New York, he met Spanish General Francisco Javier Mina
Francisco Javier Mina
Francisco Javier Mina was a Spanish lawyer and army officer and a Mexican revolutionary.-Biography:...

 who gave him a position as a Lieutenant Colonel in July 1816. He then participated in an expedition against New Spain and came ashore at the Soto la Marina sand bar on April 15, 1817, Woll was sent on to New Orleans aboard the Congreso Mexicano vessel to pick up and transport a body of volunteers. By the time he returned to Soto la Marina, General Mina had advanced into the interior of Mexico and the fort they had built at Soto la Marina had been captured by the Spaniards. Woll then converted the Congreso Mexicano into a raider. He later moved to Mexico and lived as a civilian until after the war for Mexican independence was won. On August 15, 1830 , after Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 invaded Mexico, he was called into active service by the Mexican government for the duration of the war against Spain. Woll served as the Aide de Camp to the Commander in Chief of the Mexican troops, General Antonio López de Santa Anna
Antonio López de Santa Anna
Antonio de Padua María Severino López de Santa Anna y Pérez de Lebrón , often known as Santa Anna or López de Santa Anna, known as "the Napoleon of the West," was a Mexican political leader, general, and president who greatly influenced early Mexican and Spanish politics and government...

. Woll took part in the assault on Tampico
Tampico is a city and port in the state of Tamaulipas, in the country of Mexico. It is located in the southeastern part of the state, directly north across the border from Veracruz. Tampico is the third largest city in Tamaulipas, and counts with a population of 309,003. The Metropolitan area of...

, the battle in Tamaulipas, and was wounded during the assault on the coastal fort on September 11. He was then promoted to the rank of Colonel.

In 1832 he served as the Second in Command of the Jalisco
Jalisco officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Jalisco is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is located in Western Mexico and divided in 125 municipalities and its capital city is Guadalajara.It is one of the more important states...

 Division under General José de la Cuesta. He captured Zamora
Zamora, Michoacán
Zamora de Hidalgo, is a city in the Mexican state of Michoacán. The 2010 census population was 141,627. making it the third largest city in the state. The city is the municipal seat of Zamora Municipality, which has an area of 330.97 km² and includes many other smaller communities, the largest of...

 on November 13, and in recognition of his actions, he was promoted to the rank of General. In 1836 Woll served with the Army of Operations of the Texas campaign, under the command of General Santa Anna, but after the disastrous Battle of San Jacinto
Battle of San Jacinto
The Battle of San Jacinto, fought on April 21, 1836, in present-day Harris County, Texas, was the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution. Led by General Sam Houston, the Texian Army engaged and defeated General Antonio López de Santa Anna's Mexican forces in a fight that lasted just eighteen...

, he was sent by General Vicente Filisola
Vicente Filisola
Vicente Filisola was a Spanish military figure, Mexican military and political figure in the 19th century.-Life and career:...

 to the Texas camp, to hear the agreements made between Santa Anna and Sam Houston
Sam Houston
Samuel Houston, known as Sam Houston , was a 19th-century American statesman, politician, and soldier. He was born in Timber Ridge in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, of Scots-Irish descent. Houston became a key figure in the history of Texas and was elected as the first and third President of...

. Woll remained with the Army of the North as Commandant of the Second Division, and then was Second in Command and finally became the Commander in Chief. Woll then undertook his expedition against San Antonio de Bexar. On September 11, 1842, after two hours of intense musket fire, his soldiers rounded up 150 prisoners. On his return march to his base camp on the Rio Grande, he was defeated by the Texans at the Battle of Salado Creek
Battle of Salado Creek (1842)
The Battle of Salado Creek was a decisive engagement in 1842 which repulsed the final Mexican invasion of Texas. Colonel Mathew Caldwell of the Texas Rangers led just over 200 militiamen against an army of 1,600 Mexican Army troops and Cherokee warriors and defeated them outside of San Antonio de...

 on September 17, and also at the Battle of Hondo River
Hondo Creek
Hondo Creek is a tributary of the Frio River in Texas that rises in Bandera County northwest of Tarpley and runs approximately 67 miles to its mouth near Pearsall, Texas. The creek crosses through three counties including Bandera, Medina, and Frio.-Course:...

 on September 22. The Mexican government awarded him with a plaque designed exclusively for him, which had a gold edged circle of dark blue enamel with a white 5-point Texas star, with its top point broken off, all this surrounded with a burst of gold rays, 4 inches in diameter. Woll later retired from all public activity in France in 1865, after he was sent to France on a special commission by Emperor Maximilian
Maximilian I of Mexico
Maximilian I was the only monarch of the Second Mexican Empire.After a distinguished career in the Austrian Navy, he was proclaimed Emperor of Mexico on April 10, 1864, with the backing of Napoleon III of France and a group of Mexican monarchists who sought to revive the Mexican monarchy...

, and he never again returned to Mexico. After the fall of the French empire, he stayed in Montauban
Montauban is a commune in the Tarn-et-Garonne department in the Midi-Pyrénées region in southern France. It is the capital of the department and lies north of Toulouse....

, France, where he died peacefully in 1875, at the age of 80.

See also

  • Antonio López de Santa Anna
    Antonio López de Santa Anna
    Antonio de Padua María Severino López de Santa Anna y Pérez de Lebrón , often known as Santa Anna or López de Santa Anna, known as "the Napoleon of the West," was a Mexican political leader, general, and president who greatly influenced early Mexican and Spanish politics and government...

  • Mexican War of Independence
    Mexican War of Independence
    The Mexican War of Independence was an armed conflict between the people of Mexico and the Spanish colonial authorities which started on 16 September 1810. The movement, which became known as the Mexican War of Independence, was led by Mexican-born Spaniards, Mestizos and Amerindians who sought...

  • Republic of the Rio Grande
    Republic of the Rio Grande
    The Republic of the Rio Grande was an independent nation that insurgents against the Central Mexican Government sought to establish in northern Mexico. The rebellion lasted from January 17 to November 6, 1840 and the Republic of the Rio Grande was never officially recognized.- Background :After a...

  • Horace Arlington Alsbury

External links

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