was born the fifth daughter of Alvah and Vesta Walker in Oswego,
New York. Mary's parents believed their daughters should go to college
and encouraged them to do well in school when they were young. After
working as a school teacher, Mary attended Syracuse Medical School.
graduated from medical school in 1855 she went to Ohio to be a doctor
and married Albert Miller, who was also a doctor. Mary and Albert
moved to Rome, New York and began to practice medicine together.
Unfortunately, the marriage did not last. Dr. Mary Walker stayed
in Rome and continued to practice medicine. In addition to being
a doctor Mary helped fight for social causes and became somewhat
contraversial because she chose to wear pants like men of her time.
Civil war broke out Dr. Mary Walker volunteered to work first as
a nurse and then as a surgeon. She was a prisoner of war for a brief
time and became the first woman to receive the Congressional Medal
of Honor. Later the government tried to take her medal away, probably
because Dr. Walker was so outspoken for women's rights and also
because of questions as to whether Dr. Walker had actually earned
the medal. Dr. Mary Walker refused to give the medal back and wore
it proudly until her death.