PA THE BOY IN THE BOX: WM, 4-6, found in Philadelphia, PA - 25 February 1957

America's Unknown Child

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Akoya

Well-known member
One of the biggest problems was because the daughter had moved to another state and waited many years to report what she knew and what she had seen. By the time she came forward, her mother and the others had died. The information involved events she remembered as a girl. There was no way to verify much of the information, one way or the other. The daughter was also a traumatized victim. People have tried to discredit her. She has a PhD and worked as a scientist for one of the top US pharmacy companies. She is a very intelligent woman, but her recollections are what she saw as a girl. The two counties don't want to carry the expense or the burden of investigating a cold case that is now 60 years old, with sketchy information. DNA from the tooth will only be helpful for relatives of the little boy's mother. The girl suspected a connection to her father's relative and that wouldn't show up.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
It is my understanding that the little boy was severely disabled. He reportedly didn't speak or walk. There was evidence on his body that he had surgery at some point. The Philadelphia police contacted hospitals throughout the US and there were no surgical reports in their records. At one time, the police were looking at a possible immigrant family, but there were no records there, either. He had very little muscle development on his body. The little guy would never have been able to tell his story and perhaps that is what the pedophiles wanted.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
I have no idea if the little boy's biological mother is still alive. The uncle is no longer alive. I don't believe they were married to each other and the uncle did have a family. I'll see if I can find out about the uncle. The group of pedophiles have all died. They were friends of the mother. The daughter's mother and her family were well known in the Philadelphia Main Line and they had lived there for many years. The daughter's father was originally from a small town in the coal region of Pennsylvania. Perhaps, the little boy was born there. The daughter was reportedly with her mother when she purchased the little boy and brought him home to live in the basement. The daughter can describe the house they went to, but as a girl she had no idea where in the City of Philadelphia it was located. The basement currently has no forensic value to an investigation because it has been remodeled several times in 60 years and there would be no traces of the boy's DNA or anything of forensic value. The daughter was with her mother when the little boy was dumped in Fox Chase. Some of the information she recalls does match reports by a witness who approached them that night.

I just don't think this case will be solved without a match to the little boy's mitochondrial DNA. The police and FBI have the DNA reports. Maybe some day, someone will be identified. Unfortunately, those responsible for this horrific situation won't ever be arrested or sent to prison because they are no longer alive. If they reopened the case at this point, who could they arrest? The Philadelphia Police Detectives buried the little boy in a beautiful location at a nice cemetery
 

Akoya

Well-known member
Bill Fleisher of the Vidocq Society is agnostic about Mary's story. "Nothing she said has been proved; nothing she said has been disproved," he says repeatedly.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Location 2237). Kindle Edition.


Just another frustrating dead end. But not to Bill Kelly and Joe McGillen. Not yet, anyhow. Mary was just too impressive in her recollections, too impressive sive as a person, for them to dismiss her story out of hand.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 2235-2236). Kindle Edition.


"No further progress has been made during the past year," the society says. "However, the investigators have begun a new initiative. They are trying to determine if the DNA profile of America's Unknown Child
matches any of the DNA profiles in a national mitochondrial DNA database."


David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Location 2250). Kindle Edition.


KELLY My son named his son, Jonathon, out of respect for me. And my love for you. I hope you can ever forgive me for not getting to the truth near well as I should have. I know: Mary claims your name is Jonathon. But I can't confirm Mary's story yet. Out of respect for Mary, I'll call you Jonathon. Frankly, I believe her.

Hoffmann, Jim. The Boy in the Box: America's Unknown Child (Revised Edition) (Kindle Locations 2397-2399). . Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
The old coal bins in those homes were not always visible to the rest of the basement. The old homes had these small, enclosed basement rooms to store coal for the old furnaces. There were access doors or windows from the basement to the outside of the house for coal deliveries. When the coal bins were used for coal, they were usually closed off to prevent the coal dust from spreading through the rest of the basement. When the old coal furnaces were replaced, these rooms were usually just empty. There were also drains in the floors to wash down the basement floor.

This is an old coal bin. It's actually a small room.

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Akoya

Well-known member
The daughter does claim to have been a victim of sexual abuse by her parents and her mother's friends. This was one of the reasons why it was so traumatic for her to go public with her information. She is an extremely accomplished and successful professional who claims to have been sexually abused by parents who appeared to be pillars of society.

According to the daughter, the little boy's entire body was bruised when her mother dragged him up two flights of stairs to the bathroom on the second floor. She was angry because he had vomited in the basement and she needed to wash him in the second floor bathtub. He vomited again in the tub and this is when she reportedly beat him to death on the bathroom floor. While he was reportedly living in the coal bin, his hair was long. It was reportedly cut in haste after he died. This information was given as statements to the Philadelphia Police Dept. Detectives, the Montgomery County District Attorney, and the Vidocq Society.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
Most important of all is Mary's account of the boy named Jonathan vomiting in the bathtub not long after eating baked beans. The autopsy report noted a pasty brown substance in the esophagus. That fact had never been widely publicized; Kelly wasn't sure if it was reported at all back then.

All right, that fact has been noted on the Web site dedicated to the Boy in the Box. But the Web site wasn't established lished until 1999, and the doctor said Mary's story has been consistent over the years, well before the Web site was set up by the cheerful computer geek George Knowles. To Kelly, Mary's story has the ring of truth.


David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 2041-2042). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
This is a statement from the daughter to the Vidocq Society.


"The night it happened, it was late February 1957. I was fifteen. Anyhow, my mother had made baked beans-they weren't very good-and she took some down to Jonathan. When she came back up, she said Jonathan was going to get a bath that night. And I remember there was no work or school the next day.

After a while, she went down to get Jonathan. Next thing, I heard her stomping up the stairs, cursing ing Jonathan all the way, his feet going thump, thump on the steps as she dragged him along. When she got him upstairs, I saw from her face that she was really unhappy with him, for some reason.

God, his eyes looked so scared. She made him sit on the bathroom floor as the tub was filling. Back and forth, he rocked, making that little moaning sound. He looked so pathetic. Too old for a diaper. All these years later ... I'm sorry. Sorry.

"Cut his fingernails," she told me. So I did. They were pretty dirty. I tried to be gentle.

When the tub was full, she picked him up, took off his diaper, and put it in the wastebasket. I was embarrassed to look. Then she picked him up under his arms and lowered him into the water. He let out a little scream. The water was too hot. He kicked and splashed; my mother got wet.

She lifted him back out and held him up on his feet. He was still complaining. You know, whimpering. And dripping water. "That's enough," my mother said. "That's enough!"

Still, he kept complaining. Stomping his feet and crying. Pretty soon he had tears and stuff from his nose running down his front.

"I said, enough!" my mother said. Now I knew she was really angry with him.

Back into the tub he went. He didn't scream this time. Maybe the water was cool enough. Or maybe he was afraid.

And then he threw up. Out came this brown mess-the baked beans-into the bathwater.

My mother let out a shriek like I'd never heard before. She yanked him out of the tub and slapped him. I mean hard. So, of course, he started to cry real hard.

And when he wouldn't quit, she slapped him some more. On the face. So, of course, his crying only got worse. And that was when my mother lost it entirely. She slapped him so hard, he fell and hit his head on the floor with a loud sound. She kept hitting him with both hands, on his head and around his body. My mother's head was shaking from side to side, she was swinging so fast. Then she wasn't slapping anymore, but punching as hard as she could. Jonathan was just lying on the floor. He'd tried to curl up. I don't think he was making any sounds by then.

And then my mother looked at me. "Get out!" she screamed. "Get out!"

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 1970-1972). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
It is published information that the woman was a librarian for Lower Merion Twp. High School, a librarian for Swarthmore College, and a well known Montgomery County employee. The father was a Lower Merion Twp. science teacher. The daughter has reported that she was sexually abused for years. After retirement, the mother eventually developed dementia and the daughter brought her from Florida to Ohio to oversee her care in a nursing home. Where was Karma?


"No one outside our house could have imagined what went on inside those walls. All these years later, I can hardly imagine it. My parents ... my parents did not have normal sexual desires. My father molested me. Oh, I know it's more common than people used to realize, especially back then. What was different with us is that my mother didn't just silently let it happen, which is the usual scenario. She was enthusiastic about it. Even joined in. The agreement was that my father let her indulge her taste in little boys. She preferred them to adult men because she thought them purer, somehow. I think that was it. Anyhow, one night a little boy came into our home, into our lives."

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 1910-1913). Kindle Edition.


My parents were educators. He was a high school teacher, and she was a librarian. The students liked them very much. I bet my parents autographed a thousand yearbooks.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 1908-1909). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
"I'm a scientist," the woman says. "I have a doctorate in chemistry, actually." She names her employer, one of the biggest drug companies in the world, then gasps. "They mustn't know about this." "There's no need for your bosses to ever know," Kelly says quietly. The other two cops nod.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 1904-1905). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
David Stout worked in cooperation with the Philadelphia Police Dept. and the Vidocq Society in writing his book.

I am indebted to Elmer Palmer, who shared his recollections as the first police officer to see the child in the Fox Chase thicket. I am grateful to the Good Samaritan, whom I chose to call John Valentine and who vividly recalled what he saw along Susquehanna Road on a cold day long ago.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Location 2428). Kindle Edition.

I never knew Remington Bristow or Sam Weinstein, but they came alive for me through the reminiscences of their friends and, in the case of Bristow, through his grandson, Mark Kimelheim, who graciously shared his memories with me.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 2428-2430). Kindle Edition.

Bill Kelly, who took the dead child's footprints and never left the case, and his fellow investigator Joe McGillen offered invaluable assistance. They helped me re-create the story told by "Mary," as did detective Tom Augustine. Bill Fleisher of the Vidocq Society described the Philadelphia police headquarters quarters of the 1950s and provided details of the latter-day investigation of the Boy in the Box case.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 2430-2432). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
Opinions by Vidocq members and detectives for the Philadelphia Police Force...


Bill Fleisher of the Vidocq Society is agnostic about Mary's story. "Nothing she said has been proved; nothing she said has been disproved," he says repeatedly.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Location 2237). Kindle Edition.

Just another frustrating dead end. But not to Bill Kelly and Joe McGillen. Not yet, anyhow. Mary was just too impressive in her recollections, too impressive sive as a person, for them to dismiss her story out of hand.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 2235-2236). Kindle Edition.

KELLY My son named his son, Jonathon, out of respect for me. And my love for you. I hope you can ever forgive me for not getting to the truth near well as I should have. I know: Mary claims your name is Jonathon. But I can't confirm Mary's story yet. Out of respect for Mary, I'll call you Jonathon. Frankly, I believe her.

Hoffmann, Jim. The Boy in the Box: America's Unknown Child (Revised Edition) (Kindle Locations 2397-2399). . Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
The doctor soon noted three small scars, one each on the chest, groin, and left ankle. Dr. Spelman had seen many such marks: the ones on chest and groin looked like surgical incisions, while the one on the ankle was the type left by cuts to expose a vein for a transfusion or infusion.

David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 260-261). Kindle Edition.


Dr. Spelman noticed that the fingernails and toenails had been cut recently, so short and neat that the clipping had almost surely been done by an adult.

Strange, the doctor thought. Someone seems to have cared enough to arrange surgery for the boy, but not enough to get him vaccinated. Cared enough to trim his nails, but not enough to feed him very much.


David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 266-267). Kindle Edition.
 

Akoya

Well-known member
I didn't know the neighborhood. My mother drove for quite a while, but we were still in Philadelphia. I'm pretty sure. The houses were close together, and close to the street. Close enough so I could hear after my mother parked the car in front of this one house.

My mother went up and rang the bell. The door opened, and I saw a woman standing there. She was holding a baby in diapers. She and my mother talked, just for a second.

Then there was a man's voice, from inside. "Did you get the money?" the man said.

I thought he was talking to the woman standing in the doorway. But right then my mother took an envelope from her purse and handed it to the woman. Oh, I thought. The man was talking to my mother.

And very quickly the woman handed the baby to my mother and almost slammed the door in her face, as though she never wanted to see her or the baby again. My mother carried him down to the car. I didn't know it was a boy then. It was a warm August night-hot, even-so there was no need for a blanket.

"Here," my mother said, handing the baby to me. Because she had to drive. But I didn't know anything thing about holding a baby. And his diaper was wet. It smelled like pee, I remember that. But I didn't mind holding him, I really didn't. I felt sorry for him, because I remembered how the woman had slammed the door. As though she was throwing the baby out.


David Stout. The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child (Kindle Locations 1914-1915). Kindle Edition.
 

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