This report summarizes the essential findings of seven cases of pneumococcal septicemia in the newborn and compares the data with those reported in the literature. It is emphasized that pneumococcal septicemia is a rare but highly lethal disease of the newborn. The clinical course strongly resembles early onset group B streptococcal disease. Epidemiological data suggest that the majority of infants are colonized near birth. Analogous to group B streptococcal sepsis, it seems rational to administer penicillin prophylaxis during labor to women with S. pneumoniae isolated from their genital tract to prevent vertical transmission and neonatal pneumococcal septicemia.