May 14, 1939: 5 Year Old Girl Gives Birth, Youngest Human Mother in History!

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A Brief History

On May 14, 1939, in Peru, 5 ½ year old Lina Medina became the youngest documented human mother in history. Giving birth to a 6 pound healthy boy, due to Lina’s small pelvis the birth was performed by Caesarian section.

Digging Deeper

Far from a hoax or myth, this case was well documented after her parents brought her to a doctor because of her odd weight gain. From that point on when it was discovered this Kindergarten aged girl was pregnant, she was the center of medical and media attention.

The baby boy was named Gerardo in honor of one the three attending physicians. Lina and the boy were filmed, but the movie film was lost, leaving only still photography.

A medical journal report stated that Lina had started puberty at only 8 months old, contradicting other press reports that stated she had been menstruating since 2 or 3 years old. The journal also stated the girl had started breast development by age 4 and her pelvis had widened by age 5.

The giant question you may ask is the same as back in 1939, “Who is the father?” Well, Lina has never publicly addressed that, nor has she said anything about how she was impregnated. The doctor that interviewed her about both topics said she was not able to clearly answer the questions. Not surprisingly, Lina’s father was arrested on suspicion of child abuse, but was released due to lack of evidence. (No such thing as DNA testing back then.)

Lina later married and had one more child (at age 39) and has consistently refused to speak with reporters and writers. Despite continued accusations of hoax, scientific testing had verified the facts as related here. Gerardo was led to believe Lina was his sister and did not know the truth until he was 10 years old.

Cases of early puberty are rare, although studies indicate puberty has been coming at an earlier age over the past several decades. Perhaps hormones and steroids given to cows, pigs, and chickens are at the root of the phenomena, or perhaps the birth control hormones that have entered our water supply are contributing to the trend. In either case, neither explanation seems likely in this incredibly cracked case.

Some people in the US are offended by teen mothers bringing their babies to high school; can you imagine their chagrin over a Kindergartener bringing her baby to school!

This image is a logo for 16 and Pregnant, an American reality television series that aired from June 11, 2009 to July 1, 2014, on MTV.  The show followed the stories of pregnant teenage girls in high school dealing with the hardships of teenage pregnancy.

Question for students (and subscribers): How young was your mother when she gave birth to you?  Please let us know in the comments section below this article.

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Historical Evidence

For more information, please see…

Rots, Martin H.  The Mother’s Day Companion.  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2010.

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About Author

Major Dan

Major Dan is a retired veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He served during the Cold War and has traveled to many countries around the world. Prior to his military service, he graduated from Cleveland State University, having majored in sociology. Following his military service, he worked as a police officer eventually earning the rank of captain prior to his retirement.