The Museum of Hoaxes
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The Nazi Air Marker Hoax, 1942
Princess Caraboo, servant girl who became a princess, 1817
The Lovely Feejee Mermaid, 1842
The boy with the golden tooth, 1593
The Great Electric Sugar Swindle, 1884
Bizarre pictographs of Emmanuel Domenech, 1860
The Cottingley Fairies, 1917
Rachael Ray cooks her family and her dog
Jernegan's Gold Accumulator Scam, 1898
Dog wins art contest, 1974
Dutch Elm Disease Infects Redheads -- April Fool's Day, 1973
BBC Radio broadcast an interview with an elderly academic, Dr. Clothier, who discoursed on the government's efforts to stop the spread of Dutch Elm Disease, which had been infecting many of England's trees. Dr. Clothier described some startling recent discoveries about the tree disease. For instance, he referred to the research of Dr. Emily Lang of the London School of Pathological and Environmental Medicine who had found that exposure to Dutch Elm Disease immunized people to the common cold.

Unfortunately, there was a side effect. Exposure to the disease also caused red hair to turn yellow. This was attributed to a similarity between the blood count of redheads and the soil conditions in which affected trees grew. Therefore, redheads were advised to stay away from forests for the foreseeable future. Dr. Clothier was actually the comedian Spike Milligan disguising his voice.

April Fool Categories: Botany, Medical, Radio, United Kingdom, 1973, BBC.
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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.