The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child
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The Boy in the Box: The Unsolved Case of America's Unknown Child

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  77 ratings  ·  13 reviews
On February 25, 1957, the nude, badly bruised body of a young boy was found in a cardboard box in trash-strewn woods of north Philadelphia. Posters of the “Boy in the Box” soon dotted the city and police stations nationwide—to no avail. In November 1998 the remains were exhumed for DNA analysis, and the boy was reburied as “America’s Unknown Child.”

This is a riveting true...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published September 2nd 2008 by Lyons Press
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It was a very sad story about a ~ 4 year old boy which was found in a box by the side of the road. It is still an unsolved case. It really was tough for me to read because it was very sad... and a lot of people tried very hard to solve this case.

In this day and age we are surrounded by crime scene investigation movies,tv shows, etc... you would think I would become immuned when reading this. I think the opposite happened to me. It made all those awful things real...

And to me.. it was a bit scar...more
I have always been fascinated by the Vidocq Society since their success with the John List case. That is what drew me to this book. However, one cannot be emotionally moved by the sad case of this forgotten boy and the cops who would not give up on this case.

If you are interested in Vidocq, a good follow up read is The Murder Room: The Heirs of Sherlock Holmes Gather to Solve the World's Most Perplexing Cold Cases.
Tara Lynn
I first became aware of this case through a recent news article, summing up the facts of the story as it first appeared in the 1950's. I've always been fascinated by true crime, a passion that followed me through the years getting a Criminology degree from Adelphi University.

On February 25, 1957, the nude, badly bruised body of a young boy was found in a cardboard box in trash-strewn woods of north Philadelphia. Posters of the "Boy in the Box" soon dotted the city and police stations nationwide...more
Philadelphia's Boy in the Box is one of the country's most famous unsolved crimes, but New York Times reporter Stout delivers a disappointing account of the long-running investigation. In February 1957, the body of a boy between ages four and six was discovered in a cardboard box in a wooded area in Philadelphia's Fox Chase section. Even with an apparent abundance of clues—the plaid blanket wrapped around the body, the cap found nearby—the case went cold fast, though it would become a lifelong o...more
Melissa Dally
I have been very interested in this case since I first started running across it online. How could nobody remember this little boy? This book was very readable, I pored right through it. It's very sad tho, and yes there are pictures of his remains. The author really did his homework and the detectives that have worked this case over the years clearly did as well, leaving no stone unturned in the search for the boy's name.

Also there are many theories and potentially similar cases, even some of t...more
A quick, easy read; intriguing, but ultimately unsatisfying; this is the story of an unsolved child murder in Philadelphia in 1957. The author also touches on other cases of child murder and abuse as it follows the 50-year investigation to discover the identity of "the boy in the box". Several possibilites stand out, but no final answers are found to the questions of "who?" and "why?". What remains is the haunting reality of a discarded child.
Misty Sanders vaughn
Sad, but perplexing.
This is such a heartbreaking story I wish had some closure. It's scary how many other murders probably went unsolved in the days before DNA and computers. How many children were buried without an identity. The author did his research with this sad case and mentions a few other just as haunting cases. It's a story I won't soon forget
Sarah Levine
In learning about the Boy in a Box, I became intrigued by the real account, what I read gave me a better idea in how the information and history take place. I hope one day we find the boys name as well as the details of the cause behind the events that lead to his death.
I've followed this case for years, always hoping they would find a new lead with our newer technology. I have my ideas of who did this, as I'm sure many others do too.
Really interesting read as a person not into mystery I couldn't stop reading this story about this young poor child ...mainly BC it was true
It's a sad story and there is no happy ending. I know happy endings don't always happen but I wonder why the book was really written.
Katherine Kijanka
This is a quick and easy reading. This is a sad story with no happy ending, but was very interesting and based on real events.
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David Stout (b. 1942) is an accomplished reporter who has been writing mysteries and true crime since the 1980s. Born in Erie, Pennsylvania, Stout took a job at the New York Times in 1982. He spent nearly twenty-eight years at the newspaper, as a reporter, editor and rewrite man covering national news and sports, and retired in 2009.

Stout began writing his first novel while working at the Times. B...more
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