John Welles began his pre-med studies at the University of Maryland in October 1925. As excitement and anxiety competed for supremacy in the young man’s mind, his Aunt Prudence came to the rescue with a country-style breakfast guaranteed to calm her nephew’s fears. Yet John could not dismiss the troubling events of the past summer that marred his first day of school. Further adding to John’s frustration was Prudence’s insistence that her chauffeur drive him to school, an offer he declined in favor of taking the streetcar.
A fortuitous meeting during the ride brightened John’s day considerably. Seated next to him was an elderly gentleman who discerned John’s apprehensions and encouraged the young man to speak openly about them by quickly earning his trust. Little did John know that the chance encounter would positively influence the rest of his life.
I’ll direct you to the Baltimore Streetcar Museum website as the source of information I used when preparing the scene above. Also useful is the post, A Brief History of Baltimore’s Electric Streetcars, on the Monument City Blog. In addition to the pictures I found for streetcars from this era, both sites were helpful in creating the location for one of the most important meetings of John’s life.