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Michael Ludwig
Edler von Appel
Michael Ludwig Edler von Appel was born on 21 February 1856 in Vienna.  He attended Maria Theresa Military Academy in Weiner Neustadt.   FML Michael Edler von Appel was given control of the XV. Corps in early October 1911.  He replaced GdI Moritz Freiherr von Auffenberg.  Appel fulfilled his duties unto his death in January 1915.  His successor was FML Vincenz Fox. The following timeline summarizes Appel's military career:

1876 Part of Infantry Regiment No. 52 until 1881
1876 Promoted to Leutnant
1878 participated in the occupation of Bosnia-Herzegovina
1881 Part of the General Staff until 1887
1881 Promoted to Oberleutnant
1886 In charge of military mapping of Bosnia, Croatia, and Tirol
1887 Part of Infantry Regiment No. 52 and Feldjägerbattailon No. 32 until 1888
1887 Promoted to Hauptmann, 1st Class
1888 Part of the General Staff until 1896
1892 Promoted to Major
1895 Promoted to Oberstleutnant
1896 Commander of Infantry Regiment No. 34 until 1903
1898 Promoted to Oberst
1903 Commander of the gendarmerie for Bosnia and Herzegovina until 1907
1904 Promoted to Generalmajor
1907 Commander of Mountain Brigade No. 7 until 1908
1908 Promoted to Feldmarschalleutnant
1908 Commander of Infantry Division No. 1 until 1911
1911 Commander of the XV. Corps until 1915
1913 Promoted to General der Infanterie

General von Appel died at Erdevik in Syrmia on 1 February 1915, most likely from an infectious disease.

GWS, 8/01 [rev. 12/02]
Orders of Battle:  Bosnian Frontier, August 1914
Immediately preceding the first invasion of Serbia
6. Armee,
General Oskar Potiorek
     XV. Korps, Gen. d. Inf. M.E. von Appel
         1. inf. div., Feldmlt. von Kostanjevac
          67. inf. div., Feldmlt. R. Eisler

Orders of Battle:  Serbian Front, Mid-September 1914

Immediately following the Second invasion of Serbia
6. Armee, FZM Oskar Potiorek
     XV. Korps, Gen. d. Inf. M.E. von Appel
         Chief of staff, Obst Michael v. Mihaljevic
            40. inf. div., FML Josef Braun
                    80. Honvéd inf. brig. Obst Johann Haber
                    39. inf. brig.
                    79. Honvéd inf. brig., GM Koloman Tabajdi
            48. inf. div., FML Johann Eisler Ritter v. Eisenhort
                    10 geb. brig., GM Heinrich v. Droffa
                    12 geb. brig., GM Franz Kaiser v. Maasfeld
                    11 geb. brig.

Appel’s starting point was on the middle Drina river, between the Serbian town of Loznica and the eastern Bosnian border town of Zvornik.  On 8 September 1914, the entire Corps crossed the Drina on prefabricated pontoons and advanced into the wilderness of the Gucevo and Boranja ranges.  These were the wildest mountains of western Serbia.  They ran perpendicular to the middle Drina river, paralleled the Jadar river valley and the Cer ridge to the north, and all these places were heavily fortified by the Serbian 3. Army.  After a week’s advance through terrible terrain, the Corps fought to a standstill at just below the summits of every mountain in the range.  Further south, the XVI. Corps paralleled the northeasterly advance of Appel’s forces. 
The Serbian Combined Detachment arrived from Serbia’s called-off invasion of Syrmia to the north on 13 September and it was first thrown against an incursion by GdI
Rhemen’s XIII. Corps toward Loznica.  Then, this force swiftly turned south and recaptured several summits from the mountain brigades in the 40. division.  Appel reported that no further advance could be made in the harsh terrain, and within a week, FZM Potiorek ordered a withdrawal from the mountains toward the Drina river, where sappers had prepared a series of forward trenches; this ensured that the frontlines remained on Serbian territory.  The sectors under Appel’s command remained quiet, but he had to send reinforcements to XVI. Corps when the Serbians had diversionary forces invade Herzegovina from the wilds of Montenegro in the last week of September.

GWS, 9/04
The war has a promising start...
General Appel (1) observes movements by his XV. Corps in the summer of 1914, along with his chief of Staff, Mihajlovic (2).
...but has a terrible setback!
General Appel's XV. Corps winds its way through northern Serbia in November 1914.  There would be a brief victory followed by a long retreat.