During the early years in the town of Ridgely the streets were unpaved, and in the summer, were dusty with the traffic from wagons and carts coming to and from the train station. Around the beginning of WW1, a group of patriotic young women formed a club which they named "Forget-Me-Not Band of Mercy." Their goal was to do something beneficial and long lasting for the community.
In the summer months, famers would drive through town with wagonloads of tomatoes, corn, and beans. Railroad Street next to the "park" was wide with many shade trees so farmers would unload, tie their teams to the trees and posts, and go to one of the local stores for a cool drink.
This fountain is featured in the cover of Book 2 of the RIDGELY RAILS LEGACY, and when you read the novel, you will recognize details from this account in the Caroline Sun Paper:
"MAY 1915. The public drinking fountain for which our Band of Mercy has been working so long has been installed, the event being celebrated in appropriate dedicatory exercises, witnessed by a large number of people, last Saturday evening. There was music by the band; Rev. Harvey Holsinger led in prayer; the company sang 'Maryland, My Maryland;" Rev. W. E. Habbart read a scroll containing the history of the fountain, giving the names of those by whose efforts it had been purchased, also giving facts about the Ridgely of today. After reading the scroll it was sealed in the base of the fountain and Miss Alice Pendleton carved a plate where it was sealed. The fountain was unveiled by the children of the Band of Mercy and the water was turned on. 'General,' a very old horse owned by Mr. Thomas Temple, was ridden up to it and drank, amid much applause; Rev. A. M. Rahn delivered an address, praising the work of the Band of Mercy. The fountain is inscribed 'In the name of Love and Mercy to all of God's creatures.'"