Corpse was Discovered


The child's body was face downward, covered with leaves and insects.  It was little more than a skeleton, the outline of a form in a dark, murky heap of rotting vegetation.  The left leg was missing from the knee down, as were the left hand and right arm.  Most of its organs were gone, scavenged by the animal life dwelling in the wooded area.  It had decomposed so completely that it was not possible at first to determine whether it was a boy or a girl.  The cause of death was a massive fracture of the skull.  The body had been left to the element for two to three months.  Less than twenty-four hours later, and an hour after it had been identified as Charles A. Lindbergh, Jr. by its nurse and father, the remains were cremated.  Seventy-three dramatic days of waiting had come to an end.

by Russell Aiuto

Body of the kidnapped baby found
On May 12, 1932, the body of the kidnapped baby was accidentally found, partly buried, and badly decomposed, about four and a half miles southeast of the Lindbergh home, 45 feet from the highway, near Mount Rose, New Jersey, in Mercer County. The discovery was made by William Allen, an assistant on a truck driven by Orville Wilson. The head was crushed, there was a hole in the skull and some of the body members were missing. The body was positively identified and cremated at Trenton, New Jersey, on May 13, 1932. The Coroner's examination showed that the child had been dead for about two months and that death was caused by a blow on the head.
by the Spirit of St. Louis 2 Project.
Copyright 1998-2007, All rights reserved.
Flannel Shirt Found Next to Corpse
Burlap Sack Found Near Child's Corpse

Click the link BELOW if you would like to view the corpse found in the woods near the Lindbergh home. 
Body Found

The Autopsy

The autopsy of Charles A. Lindbergh, Jr. was to be carried out by the county physician, Dr. Charles H. Mitchell, but he had severe arthritis and the actual dissections were made by the county coroner, a funeral home director, Walter Swayze. The baby's pediatrician, Dr. Philip Van Ingen, was shocked. An old physician, Mitchell, using the hands of a non-medically trained mortician, Swayze, was about to carry out the autopsy on the most famous murder victim of the century. Despite his misgivings, Van Ingen stayed to observe. It was not until 1977 that Swayze revealed that he did the actual procedures.

The corpse was in a repelling, advanced state of decay. The brain did not contain a bullet, although there was a small hole at the base of the skull, made after death. They presumed that it was made by Insp. Walsh at the discovery site, when he poked the soft skull with a stick. Dr. Mitchell, following Swazye's gingerly examination of the skull and found four fracture lines and a decomposed blood clot. He concluded that the cause of death was a blow to the head. The baby could have been murdered in his room, since a baby's fractured skull does not bleed, or he might have been dropped while the kidnapper was carrying him down the ladder.

The fontanelle, the soft spot on top of the baby's head that stays open until the child is about a year old, was found to be one inch in diameter. The Eaglet was twenty months old.
Lindy Baby Found Dead Near Home
Basically, the autopsy provided no clues, except sufficient information in the remains of the baby's clothes, the number of teeth, and his uniquely crossed little toes. There was no question that the corpse had been in the woods for several months, making the time of death very probably around the time of the kidnapping. No photographs of the skull, the blood clot, or the small round hole were made. Other than some measurements and a one-page report, typed by Swayze, there was nothing else for Schwarzkopf and his investigators to use.

Confusion over the baby's length —advertised in the widely distributed posters as 29 inches, but measured by Dr.Mitchell as 33 inches —was one issue that gave credence to the idea that the baby was not Charles A. Lindbergh, Jr. Revisionists seize on this discrepancy. Those that are convinced that it was the Eaglet point out that "2 feet, 9 inches" —a misdescription on the wanted poster —is 33 inches. If it is argued that the child was younger than the Lindbergh baby because of the fontanelle discrepancy, then an explanation must be given for one-year-old child who is an unusually tall 33 inches.

by Russell Aiuto
Autopsy Report