Dr. Mary Walker’s Civil War has been out in the world for one month. Podcaster Nick Thony, who has written about upstate New York and the Civil War, interviewed me for his History Tavern a couple of weeks ago.
It was great to talk to Nick, who asked very insightful questions. Ironically, Dr. Walker may have objected to the tavern connection. She had strong opinions about everything, including the value of temperance.
You can listen to the interview here. And be sure to check out the rest of Nick’s interviews.
In the meantime, I’m contemplating what a History Tavern would look like.
(Detre Library & Archives, Heinz History Center)
(George and I.R. Cruikshank, “Tom & Jerry taking Blue Ruin after the Spell is broke up” 1820, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne)
Dr. Mary Walker’s Civil War launched on June 1. Thanks again to everyone who followed along on the Walker Wednesdays and to all of you who ordered the book or plan to do so.
Dr. Walker has been in the news recently, not a typical thing for someone who died in 1919. (It’s interesting to contemplate that she lived through the 1918 pandemic.) Over the last week or so, her name came up in connection with discussions about renaming military bases. (Some are named for Confederates.) Walker is certainly a long shot, but as the only woman to ever receive the Medal of Honor, it’s appropriate to consider honoring her this way.
(Library of Congress)
I’ve been booking virtual events about Mary Walker. I add them to the News and Events section on this blog as the details are firmed up, and I post reminders on Facebook and Twitter. Hopefully, you will find something to watch and/or listen to.
If you’d like to help spread the word about the book (and please, please, please do! this is so very important!), post a review of it on any and all book sites. In terms of real oomph for boosting the book’s profile, the more reviews on Amazon and Good Reads, the better. Otherwise, Mary Walker will end up like this:
(Fans of Friends will especially get this.)
Stay safe and stay well.
It has been wonderful spending these past Wednesdays introducing you to Mary Walker. I hope you found the teasers enticing enough to read the book.
Epilogue: The Medal of Honor Restored
A somebody in her lifetime, Mary Walker was not forgotten after she died.
Though Mary Walker was stripped of her Medal of Honor (along with many others), she refused to acknowledge that and continued to wear the decoration throughout her life. Not long after she died, a quiet campaign began to have the medal restored. In the Epilogue, I show how timing was instrumental to that success.
I’ll resume this blog feature for my forthcoming biography of Dale Evans. It will re-emerge as Queen of the West Wednesdays. (I’ll let you know when it’s time to saddle up!)
Until then, I’ll continue posting about other interesting women in American history and about my reading adventures.
Stay safe and stay well.
June 1 is launch day, which means Dr. Mary Walker’s Civil War is out in the world. For those of you who preordered the book, thank you. To those of you who haven’t, there’s always time to do so for yourself or for someone else–it would make a great graduation gift and/or Father’s Day gift, and you could ask your local library to purchase a copy. One final request. You can boost the book’s profile by recommending it to other readers either personally or by leaving a review on all of your favorite book sites.
As I mentioned last week, I’m using launch day to post the teaser for the final chapter of the book. I’ll wrap up Dr. Mary Walker Wednesdays in two days with the teaser from the epilogue.
Chapter Eleven: The Old “New Woman”
Brushing off the harsh treatment she had received from Susan B. Anthony and other delegates of the National Woman Suffrage Association, Mary Walker blazed her own women’s rights path, emphasizing dress reform while she stumped for suffrage.
(Library of Congress)
Mary Walker’s attire became more explicitly masculine as she grew older. This photo, probably taken some time between 1911 and 1917, shows the Bloomer costume of the 1800s transformed into tailored trousers and a long coat. The top hat indicates she had been out on an important errand; she dressed up for such occasions. By the 1910s, the “new women” of the early 20th century readily donned trousers for outdoor activities like riding bicycles. It took awhile, but Mary Walker’s belief about fashion finally caught on.
We’ve reached the penultimate chapter of Dr. Mary Walker’s Civil War. The book launches on Monday, June 1, and that is the day I will post the first line of the final chapter. Wednesday, June 3 will be the last Walker Wednesday, and it will cover the Epilogue.
Chapter Ten: Outcast and Erased
In the great divide of the women’s suffrage movement, Mary Walker took her own path.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony published The Revolution, a weekly women’s rights newspaper, from 1868-1872. Mary Walker did not always get along with the two women, but she certainly agreed with their paper’s slogan: “Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less.”
Stay safe and stay healthy.