The medical examiner will work to determine his exact cause of death.
Officials say a pedestrian waved down two police officers around 4 p.m. near South Street and Dover Street to report a small child in the water.
A family of tourists from Oklahoma had just finished a Statute of Liberty tour in Lower Manhattan when they saw what they at first thought may have been a doll in the East River.
"My mom, she was out here and she was kind of just looking in the water, and she calls my dad over and says 'there's a baby in the water!'" Austin told ABC 7 in NY.
Police are investigating after a baby boy died shortly after being pulled from the water near South Street Seaport.
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'When i spotted the baby it's little head was under the water but his little legs were over. Police believe the boy was less than a year old.
Mrs Campbell said she took photos of him in the hope that they would help to find his parents.
"Someone knows that child", she told the Times.
"That's when I spotted the baby". They've asked anyone with information on the baby to call the 1st Precinct Detectives or 1-800-577-TIPS.
CBS New York says authorities took the child from the water and rushed him to a local hospital and was pronounced dead. "It's just unreal, you don't come to the city expecting to see things like this, to see babies floating in the water".