Tag: fort wayne

John Sherman Lightcap’s Death

John Sherman Lightcap

I was researching the Lightcap’s over the weekend and came across this article about John Sherman Lightcap.  He was the (adopted?) son of Walter and Eliza (Stewart) Lightcap.  (Walter Lightcap was the brother of my great-grandfather, George.)

Anyway, I found an article on the front page of the Logansport Press (Logansport, Indiana) on Dec 9 1939 discussing the death of John Sherman Lightcap .    The article states that John committed suicide by drowning.

John Sherman Lightcap Suicide


No. Judson Banker Commits Suicide in Lake at Ft. Wayne

Fort Wayne, Ind., Dec 8 (AP) – John S. Lightcap, 59 assistant cashier at North Judson, Ind., and former postmaster of that town was drowned today in the lake in reservoir park here. Dr. Walter E. Kruse, Allen county coroner, returned a verdict of suicide.

Lightcap recently suffered a nervous breakdown his son, Donald V. Lightcap of Fort Wayne with whom he was visiting, said.

Ralph Bruce, a passerby, saw Lightcap struggling in the shallow water and pulled him to shore. Efforts to revive the man failed. The body will be returned to North Judson Sunday for burial Monday.

Research block: Levi Lightcap

Have you ever hit a wall with your research of an ancestor?  I have, many times, but my current stumbling block is Levi Lightcap, my 3rd great grandfather. More specifically, I’m having trouble identifying his parents.   All I know is that he was born in New Jersey.  Other than that, it’s pure speculation as to who his parents and siblings are.

I’ve been stumped so much that I set up an appointment in July to meet with a researcher at the Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  For those unfamiliar, this is the largest repository for genealogical research in the Midwest.  In fact, it’s second only to Salt Lake City as a genealogical resource in the United States.

Anyway, I forwarded about 60 pages of research to them that I hope will generate some leads.  There’s been research done on other Lightcap’s, but none involving Levi.  I’ve found researchers who link him to a brother, but have nothing that verifies this assertion.  Verification is key.  Without it, assertions means nothing.  I’ve not seen any researcher with information about his parents.

I hope that the Genealogical Center researcher can help.  Since Levi died in North Judson, Indiana, and suffered a strange death (he was accidentally shot at work while his son struggled with another man over a gun), I’m hoping they have more information.  The newspaper articles I’ve found have been of little assistance, except a few days ago I found an article in the Wisconsin State Journal that said that three men were arrested after Levi was shot, including his son.  Maybe there’s police documentation that’s available.  But I have no idea how to go about getting arrest records, or even if that’s possible.

I’m writing this down as a research line to pursue in the future.