Adalbert Volck was born in Augsburg, Germany, in 1828. He was involved with the 1848 German Revolution and afterwards was forced to flee the country and eventually arrived in America.
Volck lived in St. Louis for a while before settling in Baltimore. He worked as a dentist before working as an illustrator during the Civil War. After the war he established himself as a portrait painter. Adalbert Volck died in 1912.