The Museum of Hoaxes
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The most sacred relic: the Holy Foreskin, circa 800 AD
The Gallery of Fake Viral Images
The Hoaxing Hitchhiker, 1941
The Society for Indecency to Naked Animals, 1959
The Hitler Diary Hoax, 1983
Lord Gordon-Gordon, robber of the robber barons, 1871
Eccentric's last prank, 66 years after his death, 1900
Samsung invents the on/off switch
Prof. Wingard's Death Ray Hoax, 1876
The Stone-Age Tasaday Hoax, 1971
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.