We’ve officially hit 2,000 books in the database! We’ve created a fun way for readers to go on a sapphic book finding mission to get familiar with this new resource. Four prizes of a $15 Amazon gift card will be awarded in drawings on November 9, 16, 23, and 30. For complete rules, click here.
Now let’s get to today’s history lesson: Dr. Mary Edwards Walker
On November 26, 1832, Dr. Mary Walker was born in New York to progressive parents. Her nontraditional upbringing fostered her independence and instilled an understanding of justice. The family didn’t have traditional gender roles when it came to housework and on the farm.
Mary taught at a school to pay her way though Syracuse Medical College. In 1855, she graduated with honors and was the only female in her class.
At the outbreak of the American Civil War, she volunteered as a surgeon. The Army rejected her because she was a woman, offering her a nursing position, which she rejected. She volunteered as an unpaid civilian surgeon for the Union Army.
Confederate troops arrested her on April 10, 1864. They accused of being a spy right after she helped a Confederate doctor with an amputation. Mary spent several months at Castle Thunder in Virginia, refusing to wear clothing that was more “becoming of her sex.” On August 12, 1864, there was a prisoner swap for a Confederate surgeon.
After the war, Dr. Mary Walker tried to retroactively validate her service to officially receive a Medal of Honor, but there wasn’t a precedent for commissioning a woman. President Andrew Johnson personally awarded her the Medal of Honor.
She wrote and lectured on issues involving health care, women’s rights, temperance, and dress reform. She was arrested more than once for wearing men’s clothing and she fought for the right to wear what she wanted, saying, “I don’t wear men’s clothes, I wear my own clothes.”
She died on February 21, 1919, at the age of eighty-six after a long illness.
To honor Dr. Mary Edwards Walker, we’re asking readers to go to the BookFinder and look up books in the following Archetype category: Military.
Find a book you haven’t read yet, or if you come across an old favorite, share it and tell us why. To enter the giveaway, share your entry in the Facebook group.
Remember, the more days you play, the more entries you’ll receive for the $15 Amazon gift card, so don’t forget to check back tomorrow for another Book Finding Mission.
Authors, if your books aren’t in the database yet, we highly recommend you submit them now. Here’s the form.