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Mary Edwards Walker : above and beyond

by Walker, Dale L.

Format: Print Book 2005
Availability: Available at 1 Library 1 of 1 copy
Available (1)
Location Collection Call #
Upper St. Clair Township Library Storage 973.775 WAL
Location  Upper St. Clair Township Library
Collection  Storage
Call Number  973.775 WAL
Mary Edwards Walker (1832-1919) defied the conventions of her era. Born and raised on a farm in Oswego, New York, Walker became one of a handful of female physicians in the nation-and became a passionate believer in the rights of women.Despite the derision of her contemporaries, Walker championed freedom of dress. She wore slacks-or "bloomers" as they were popularly known-rather than the corsets and voluminous ground-dragging petticoats and dresses she believed were unhygenic and injurious to health. She lectured and campaigned for woman's suffrage and for prohibition, and against tobacco, traditional male-dominated marriage vows, and any issue involving the sublimation of her sex.From the outset of the Civil War, Walker volunteered her services as a physician. Despite almost universal opposition from army commanders and field surgeons, Walker served at Manassas, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Chickamauga, and other bloody theaters of the war. She ministered to wounded and maimed soldiers and civilians on both sides of the conflict. Captured by Confederates near Chattanooga in 1864, she served four months in a Southern prison hellhole where she nursed and tendedto wounded prisoners of war.For her services in the war, in 1865 Mary Edwards Walker was awarded the Medal of Honor, becoming the only woman in American history to receive the nation's highest award for military valor.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "The latest entry in the American Heroes series chronicles the only female recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor. Mary Edwards Walker was a standard-setting physician, a women's-rights activist, and a courageous opponent of what she considered rampant, unnecessary amputation during the Civil War. Historian Walker (no relation) regrets that his work suffers from the scant amount of Mary's writing; she was both too busy and disinclined to keep a journal. What does exist of her own words, as well as those written about her, melds with Walker's prose in a colorful portrait of an uppity woman, dressed in trousers (for which she was often criticized), who would be a credit to any generation's fight for the rights of any disenfranchised group. She persevered to become a physician, persisted to build a medical practice at a time when most people wouldn't be caught dead consulting a female doctor, and faced financial crisis because Union Army officers refused to commission a female. She inspires and motivates. --Donna Chavez Copyright 2005 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "A women?s rights advocate, a Union spy and an ?indefatigable foe of traditional female dress,? Mary Edwards Walker (1832-1919), one of the first female doctors in the United States, was a pioneer. In this compact entry in Forge?s American Heroes series, Walker (The Calamity Papers) brings her many accomplishments to light. Unfortunately, while the doctor?s history is fascinating?under the guise of a civilian contract surgeon, she spied for the Union, was imprisoned by the Confederate army for five months and was awarded the Medal of Honor in 1865?this brief, just-the-facts recounting doesn?t hint at Walker?s personality. As the author notes in his preface, Walker?s voice is curiously missing from historical records and her own writings were perfunctory, presenting a challenge for any historian looking to capture the woman, not just her deeds. In an effort to make up for this lack, the author attempts to contextualize Walker?s life, and often does so with great success. For example, the details of the famous John Brown trial and the political elections leading up to the Civil War shed light on her involvement with the anti-slavery movement; however, the book occasionally misses, drawing scant connections between historical anecdotes and Walker?s life. Although this brief chronicle succeeds more as a textbook lesson than as a nuanced biography, it is nonetheless a thorough overview of one of history?s most enigmatic heroines. (June) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information."

Additional Information
Series American heroes series (New York, N.Y.)
#1 - Chief Joseph
#2 - Amelia Earhart
#3 - Mary Edwards Walker
#4 - John Muir
#5 - David Crockett
#6 - George Washington
Subjects Walker, Mary Edwards, -- 1832-1919.
Women physicians -- United States -- Biography.
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Women.
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Medical care.
Publisher New York :Forge,2005
Edition 1st ed.
Language English
Notes "A Tom Doherty Associates book."
Description 221 pages ; 20 cm.
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 209-211) and index.
ISBN 9780765310651 (acid-free paper)
0765310651 (acid-free paper)
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