Blanche Payne was the first wife of my great-grandfather, Ernest Lightcap. They married January 2, 1900. She was 19; he was 20. She died of Bright’s disease, a historical classification of kidney diseases, when she was 23. They had no children.
Until I started researching my family history, there was always some confusion over how many wives Ernest had (3) or who was the mother of his children (Henrietta Doose). He only had two children, so I can’t understand why there was confusion over this. (It wasn’t like he dropped his children off after Henrietta died and never saw them again.)
I also find it a little sad that no mention of this marriage was made in Ernest’s obituary. Ernest’s obituary refers to his “first” wife Henrietta Doose and his “second” wife Susie Lensing.
Blanche is buried in North Judson, Indiana, in the Lightcap family plot. Also of interest is how her name is spelled on her tombstone: Blanch. This is the only place where I have seen her name spelled this way. In her obituary and marriage certificate, her name is spelled Blanche. It’s also spelled this way in U.S census data.
Her obituary was published December 31, 1903, in the North Judson News, North Judson, Indiana.
Transcription of obituary:
Mrs. Ernest Lightcap
Died Tuesday Forenoon At The Home Of Her Sister, Mrs. William Kuester, of This Place.
Tuesday forenoon Mrs. Ernest Lightcap formerly Miss Blanche Payne, of this place, died at the home of William Kuester and wife, aged twenty-three years, eleven months and eleven days.
About four years ago she married Ernest Lightcap and for the last year or more they have been living in Chicago. Mrs. Lightcap has been ailing nearly all summer and lately she came down here to stay with her sister in the hope that she would regain her health in time. Monday evening, however, she became so much worse that her Chicago physician, M. M. Thompson, was called. He could do nothing though, and she passed her [?]ong home Tuesday forenoon, acute Bright’s disease being the immediate cause of death.
Six brothers, three sisters and her father survive her. The funeral is tomorrow at the Methodist church at 2 p.m.