Mary Edwards Walker

You may only think of Mary Walker as the place to go when you are sick. The person the health center is named after is a remarkable woman.

Born in the Town of Oswego on Nov. 26, 1832, Walker was a bit of a firecracker. She refused to wear women's clothing because the clothes held her down. She was also suspened from Bowen Collegiate Institute for refusing to quit the school's debate team, which was all male.

At the beginning of the Civil War, she volunteered as a nurse for the Union Army. The United States Army didn't allow females to be surgeons. As time went on, the army realized her value and Walker was allowed to work as an unpaid field surgeon.

She was also captured by Confederate troops and arrested as a spy, although she was later realeased on a prisoner exchange.

After the war, she became a writer and lecturer and spoke on women's freedoms and women's dress. She was often arrested for not wearing proper female clothing.

Walker received a Medal of Honor from the U.S. Army, which makes her the first and only female to have ever won the award.

She passed away in 1919, one year before women earned the right to vote.