Dr Mary Edwards Walker
Dr. Mary Edwards Walker was born on November 26, 1832 in the town of Oswego, New York. Her parents were Alvah and Vesta Walker. She was the youngest of five daughters and she had one brother. Mary’s father, Alvah, was a farmer and often Mary and her sisters would work alongside of their father doing farm work and carpentry. Alvah Walker was also an abolitionist and he believed in women’s rights and let his daughters wear loose fitting men’s clothes and taught them to respect themselves and think of themselves as equal to men. Alvah wanted all six of his children to reach a higher level of education and he encouraged his daughters to go to the university.
Mary’s father built the first school in their town of Oswego. Mary was educated there and then Mary and her two older sisters graduated from Falley Seminary in Fulton, New York and they all became teachers. Just like their mother Vesta who had taught in the school that their father built. Mary started teaching in Minetto, New York in 1852. Mary tried teaching for awhile but she really was interested in medicine so she enrolled in Syracuse Medical College in June of 1855. The college accepted both men nd women on an equal basis even though Mary was the only woman in her class. You see women were not widely accepted as doctors at the time so not a lot of women were going to school to be a doctor. Mary graduated at age 21 from Syracuse Medical College.
You see Mary like her father was an enthusiast for Women’s rights and often wore trousers and basically men’s clothing as a sign of her rebellious nature. Mary even wore men’s evening wear to lecture at a conference on Women’s rights. So it would only be fitting for Mary to have worn trousers when she married her fellow doctor, Albert Miller in 1856, and for her to keep her own name. They were married thirteen years and even set up a practice together in Rome, New York but because the general public was still skeptical about female...