Little Lord Fauntleroy is the name given to the body of an unidentified male child who was found floating in a pond close to the O’Laughlin Stone Company in Waukesha, Wisconsin on the 8th of March 1921.
He was called Little Lord Fauntleroy due to a luxurious character that was featured in a children’s book by Frances Hodgson Burnett of the same name.
The police believe that the child was between 5 and 7 at the time of his death. He had blonde hair, and brown eyes and was missing a tooth from his lower jaw. There were no signs of physical abuse on his body, but he had been hit with a blunt object.
The child was dressed in a blouse, a grey sweater from the Bradley Knitting Company which was expensive, underwear, black stockings and patent leather shoes. The boy’s clothes were of the best quality, which led to some people speculating that the child came from a wealthy background.
Police and investigators are also unsure of how long he was in the water, and they have estimated he could have been in the water anywhere from a few days to 6 months.
The child’s body was put on display at a funeral home for a few weeks with the hope that someone would recognise him, but sadly no one ever did. A local woman, Minnie Conrad, raised money so that he could be buried at the Prairie Home Cemetery in Waukesha.
One worker at the O’Laughlin company told police that five weeks before the boy’s body was found, a couple approached him. The woman, who was wearing a red cardigan, asked him if he had seen a young boy who was crying. The man was watching the area where the child would later be found. The couple then drove off in a Ford vehicle, and have never been heard from since.
Another possible theory is that the boy was abducted from a wealthy family in a different state or location, and then dumped in the lake to prevent him from being identified.
There were also sightings of a woman who visited the child’s grave wearing a heavy veil. Some have suggested that this woman knew the true identity of the child.
In 1949, a medical examiner from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, suggested that the child may actually be Homer Lemay, a six-year-old boy who disappeared at around the same time the child’s body was discovered.
Homer’s father, Edmond, told police that Homer had died in a vehicle accident during a trip to South America. However, there was never any record of Homer’s death, and police were even unable to find any information about the accident that Edmond described. Edmond also told police that Homer was staying with family friends: “the Nortons” in South America, but police have never been able to find anything that proves the “Nortons” even existed.
Little Lord Fauntleroy has never been identified. It has been over 100 years since he was found.
Will we ever discover his true name?
Unsolved, True Crime, Mystery, Unidentified, Strange, Little Lord Fauntleroy, Waukesha, Wisconsin, 1921, 1920s, Unsolved Death, Unsolved Mystery, Homicide, Murder, Death, John Doe