Image: Joseph circa 1936
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: September 6, 1936 from New York City, New York
Classification: Endangered Missing
Age: 4 years old
Height and Weight: 3’0″; 35 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Hispanic Male, Black hair, Brown eyes, Joseph has a small scar above his eye, he has a mole on his right wrist, he may go by the nickname “Joe”
Clothing/Jewelry Description: A navy blue sweater with a red striped collar, a yellow sweater, white knickers with blue dots and blue sandals
Circumstances of Disappearance
Joseph Rodriguez was last seen while playing with neighborhood children in New York City on September 6th 1936. He mysteriously disappeared and was never seen or heard from again.
Joseph resided in the 1600 block of Park Avenue with his aunt, Pauline Rodriguez, who has raised him since he was born. His birth mother, Dora Olivo, lived in the 1300 block of Fifth Avenue which is walking distance to where Joseph lived.
On the day of his disappearance, Joseph was being watched by a neighbor as his aunt had left the child with them. The neighbor took Joseph out to the street that afternoon to play with other children. When the neighbor returned later to get Joseph, he wasn’t there.
6 days after Joseph’s disappearance, his aunt received a telegram. The telegram stated “Joseph will be back on Wednesday. Doctor will not let me move him”. While some reports state that the telegram was anonymously sent, others state that the telegram was signed with a name that Pauline was unable to recognize. The name was never publicly released.
Joseph’s case remains unsolved. There was no other communication from the person who sent the telegram and he never returned to his aunts home. His case is one of the oldest missing cases in New York history. It remains on file with the NYCPD.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
New York City Police Department – Missing Persons Unit 646-610-6914