London’s underground, the “tube,? and Chicago’s El and Loop, share a common ancestry, Charles Tyson Yerkes, Jr. Yerkes was a complicated man with many faces: shrewd, unscrupulous, charismatic, competent, controversial, and a brilliant visionary. He served as a model for the fictional character Frank Algernon Cowperwood in Theodore Dreiser’s “Trilogy of Desire: The Titan, The Financier, and The Stoic.? Dreiser didn’t have to venture far from the truth to write spellbinding fiction. Yerkes was born in Philadelphia during the Panic of 1837. His parents belonged to a small sect of Quakers, the Hicksites, a group equally despised by Philadelphia’s Episcopalian upper crust and the Quaker mainstream.