Thriller Thursday: The Kidnapping of Geraldine Kuylen

This newspaper article I found on ProQuest's Historical Newspapers Database during their recent free trial period they offered in celebration of  Black History Month. I have to thank my fellow Geneablogger friend and colleague, Yvette Porter Moore, for bringing the ProQuest site to my attention. I was lucky enough to find this article on a kidnapping that took place in my family that I knew of through information my father told me. Finding this article brought some additional details about what happened to light. My paternal grandmother was Ethel Murrell. My grandmother's sister Hilda who later in life went by the name Bernice had we believe two children. Geraldine and Theodore. This article is regarding the her first child who was kidnapped from her by a former babysitter.

From ProQuest Historical Newspapers:  New York Amsterdam News (1922--1993) pg. 1

(Above a picture of Geraldine Kuylen--wrong first name listed under picture but she is referred to correctly as Geraldine in the article.)

Unfortunately after this second kidnapping, Geraldine was never found. From what we the family know of the kidnapper she loved the child and we don't think she would have caused her physical harm. I am hopeful that perhaps someday by some miracle of the internet, perhaps this child or a descendant of hers may come across this article or my blog and perhaps the family can be reconnected. My Aunt Hilda Dixon, formerly Kuylen, passed away in 2000 so she will not have the opportunity to find out the outcome of this story but her nephew and grand niece would love to.


  1. My dear friend...I pray that there is a reunion...I am in shock and so glad that you found this article! How heart wrenching!!!

  2. I wonder why she would tell the woman who kidnapped the child once where she was. That seems strange. And why would the sister who was babysitting let the kidnapper take any of their children anywhere? Stranger still.

    1. It is strange Kristin. My dad was a baby when this was happening. From what he was told of the situation later by his mother was that his Aunt had allowed the babysitter to watch the child again and then she took the child. Now once I discovered this article last month it does seem to appear that perhaps something was amiss here. My Aunt Hilda was a bit "flighty." I know what my thoughts are on the matter, but I prefer to keep them private due to the sensitive nature of this. Kristin you are a smart cookie so we are probably on the same page.

  3. How sad to loose a child; to know they are out there but to never see them again.
    Theresa (Tangled Trees)

  4. Thanks Yvette for sharing this post with folks!

    Theresa thanks for checking in.

    Kristin it is strange indeed. Probably a lot more to this story.

  5. Such a tragic story! I hope you get your wish and that some day your family will be reconnected.


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