Laura C. (#701, 1924)

Laura C. (1872-1924)

Laura was born in Montgomery County, Indiana. She lived on her family’s farm for much of her life. Her mother died in 1901 and her father in 1916. After his death, the family land was split up between Laura and her two brothers.

In the early 1920s, Laura became convinced that she was sick. She believed she had heart and kidney trouble, and she visited several doctors who did not find the illness she was describing.

Over three years, Laura’s family said her disposition had changed. She had become “unbalanced,” “hysterical,” and sometimes destructive and violent. She turned against everyone, including her immediate family.

In 1924 Laura was admitted to Central State Hospital. One month after her admission, she died of heart failure. The autopsy showed that part of her heart tissue showed signs of “advanced premature arteriosclerosis,” or hardening of the walls of arteries.  Arteriosclerosis in the brain can sometimes lead to vascular dementia.


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