Such was her service in tending the many wounded men, Dr. Walker received a special congressional medal for her services and granted a special pension.
Although she was regarded as a heroine, Mary kept getting into trouble with her insistence on wearing pants. Likewise, the local police insisted upon arresting her. At that time, it was considered not only bad taste but illegal for women to wear britches.
Dr. Walker's conflict with the police became such an embarrassment that her firends and colleagues approached members of Congress and asked for something to be done.
Congress acted with a practicality that we wish it might show today. It made it legal for Dr. Mary Walker to wear pants anywhere in the Continental United States at any time--day, night, and holidays!