THE SOUTHWESTERN HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. LXIX JULY, 1965 No. i
eireral Arthur . Well
A Soldier of ortune in Zexas
ROBERT W. AMSLER
SOLDIER OF FORTUNE WAS PROBABLY RESPONSIBLE, AT LEAST
in part, for the success of Stephen F. Austin's efforts to
have his father's grant in Texas transferred to himself.
Arthur Goodall Wavell had a fantastic military record before
arriving in Mexico, having served as a cadet in the Bengal estab-
lishment at the age of twenty to begin his military career. He
later rose to the rank of lieutenant-colonel in the Spanish army.
For his service in the Peninsular War, Cadiz, Barrosa, Tarragona,
and Ateca between 1811 and 1817, he was decorated three times
by the crown.
After resigning his commission in the Spanish army, Wavell
joined the independence army of Chile as colonel of infantry in
182o. He advanced to the rank of major general and deputy com-
mander-in-chief before being sent as special aide to Mexico at its
request. He accepted a commission in the Mexican army as brig-
adier general and was shortly promoted to the rank of major
general. In Mexico he published army textbooks on tactics and
a code of regulations in Spanish. By order of the government he
wrote several pamphlets of a military nature, including plans of
defense for various areas.-
When General Wavell came to Mexico, he could scarcely have
been expected to foresee that he was, through his connections
with that country, to have some influence in shaping the destiny
of the wilderness which finally became the state of Texas. He was
to be associated with Texas under three of its flags: first, while it
1Walter P. Webb and H. Bailey Carroll (eds.), The Handbook of Texas (2 vols.;
Austin, 1952), II, 871.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/. Accessed January 26, 2015.