The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
 
Life discovered on the moon, 1835
September Morn, the painting that shocked the censor, 1913
Did Poe say 'The best things in life make you sweaty'?
What do the lines on Solo cups mean?
Pierre Brassau, Monkey Artist, 1964
Dog wins art contest, 1974
The Instant Color TV Hoax, 1962
Baby Yoga, aka Swinging Your Kid Around Your Head
The Case of the Vanishing Belly Button, 1964
Fake Fish Photos
Migrant Mother Makeover -- April Fool's Day, 2005
Popular Photography Magazine ran a special feature on how to touch up photos in which subjects have unsightly wrinkles or unattractive expressions. "Can these photos be saved?" the article asked. One of the examples used was Dorothea Lange's famous Depression-era photo of a "Migrant Mother" huddling with her children in a roadside camp outside Nipomo, California.

Under the masterful touch of Popular Photography editors, the Migrant Mother was transformed from an iconic symbol of the struggle for survival into a smooth-faced suburban soccer mom. Her wrinkles were erased, her gaze softened, and the poverty-stricken kids removed. Readers were appalled. The editors later noted that the article "generated more responses than anything we've done in years… Most of our readers got the joke. But many didn't. We received hundreds—yes, HUNDREDS—of rants, hate letters, and excommunication threats."

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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.