Trundling along on her wide-gauge rails this autumn afternoon, the Baltimore Streetcar Museum's Car No. 264 is returning to her terminus with a load of passengers experiencing "the way it used to be."
This wooden bodied car, lovingly maintained by the museum, was built in 1900 and ran on the streets of Baltimore for many years. Her sides were removable to allow "air-conditioned" comfort for her passengers on hot summer days. (*)
Waiting at the terminal, ready to operate the next journey alongside Falls Road to the 28th Street Loop, the iconic form of a modern (post WW2) PCC streetcar...
Once upon a time, she ran on the streets of Philadelphia in her colorful SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) livery.
She is one of the lucky ones of her type that did not fall to the indignity of the scrapper's torch, in the headlong rush of so many American cities to replace streetcars with diesel buses (only to have to reinvent the wheel decades later with "light rail").
She has found a loving home at the Baltimore Streetcar Museum, where she takes turns carrying passengers alongside Falls Road with No. 7407, another PCC that actually did run in Baltimore.
©2017 Steve Ember