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Taken at Birth

Taken at Birth

  • Premiered: 
    October 9, 2019
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: TLC
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Family
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Plot Synopsis

TAKEN AT BIRTH is a three-part docuseries that shares the untold stories of the "Hicks Babies," the name given to more than 200 newborn babies illegally sold or given away from the back steps of a small-town Georgia clinic run by Dr. Thomas J. Hicks during the 1950s and 1960s. In 1997, the shocking news story broke, revealing that Hicks was alleged to have spearheaded a black-market baby ring out of his clinic, denying over hundreds of babies their true identities and biological families. Since the undercover operation was exposed, many Hicks Babies have desperately searched for their origins, yet decades later, they are still looking for their birth parents. To this day, a cloud of secrecy remains around Dr. Hicks himself and the notorious adoption ring that changed the course of hundreds of lives. The Hicks Babies share an urgency to find their roots and uncover the truth about Dr. Hicks' clinic before the clock runs out. At the helm is lead investigator Jane Blasio, the youngest of the known Hicks Babies, whose resolve helped break the story, and who has since dedicated her life to finding out the truth. After 20 years of hard work and heartbreaking dead ends, Jane is determined to get some answers. To aid in the search, she enlists TLC's LONG LOST FAMILY co-hosts Lisa Joyner and Chris Jacobs, hoping their investigative skills and experience reuniting families, combined with the benefit of today's advanced technology, will finally provide results. Together, they set off on a journey to solve a decades-old mystery, reunite birth families and ultimately help them find closure, acceptance and truth.

Interlaced with the long overdue reunions, is Jane, Lisa, and Chris searching for answers that have haunted the Hicks Babies for years. Why did Dr. Hicks start selling babies? Were some mothers misled into believing their babies were stillborn when they were actually alive? And the monumental question that's been looming over the Hicks Babies community for years: Were any of them biological children of Hicks himself? Standing between Jane, Lisa, and Chris and the truth are long-since buried secrets, and without any known medical records, they have their work cut out for them. Despite the obstacles, the investigative team -- with the blessing and cooperation of the Hicks Babies community -- works tirelessly to try and bring answers to the families impacted by Dr. Hicks' actions, from conventional DNA searches and door-to-door interrogations, to a mausoleum search. They even follow along as one Hicks family member exhumes the grave of a relative with the hope of helping others, and to find her ultimate truth. Throughout the journey, they experience epic reunions and devastating disappointments, encounter unexpected twists and turns, and break through old barriers to uncover new evidence that may finally provide the truth for many Hicks Babies, and that could help the search for others moving forward.

The three-part series debuted from 9-11pm ET/PT on TLC on consecutive nights, beginning Wednesday, October 9 through Friday, October 11, 2019:

"Black Market Baby Dealer" (Wednesday, October 9): In the 1950s and 1960s a doctor named Thomas Hicks illegally sold over 200 babies on the black market. The team works to reunite stolen babies with biological families while trying to unearth secrets about Hicks himself.

"Mausoleum Break-in" (Thursday, October 10): Jane and Lisa meet the first Hicks baby, Stephen Dilbeck. Chris and Sallie bust open the mausoleum in search of birth records rumored to be inside and they work on getting approval of an exhumation.

"Buried Truth" (Friday, October 11): Jane and Lisa share the news about the exhumation with a group of Hicks Babies that have questioned whether Dr. Hicks was in fact their biological father. Sallie and the Hicks Babies learn the DNA results.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Good Caper Content