A serologic study was made in 34 children immunized against measles at the age of 12 months. Using a sensitive virus neutralization test, it was found that many of the children had pre-existing maternal antibody to measles virus. Children with high pre-existing antibody titers failed to seroconvert. Children with lower pre-existing antibody titers seroconverted, but the resulting antibody titer was significantly lower than in children without pre-existing antibody titer. The results of this study demonstrate a probably mechanism for measles vaccine failure in 12-month-old children and support the recommendation of the Public Health Service Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices to postpone measles vaccination to 15 months of age.