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The April Fool Archive: 1600-1799 | 1800-1849 | 1850s | 1860s | 1870s | 1880s | 1890s 1900 | 1901 | 1915 | 1919 | 1920 | 1923 | 1925 | 1926 | 1927 | 1930 | 1931 | 1932 | 1933 | 1934 | 1935 | 1936 | 1937 | 1938 | 1939 | 1940 | 1941 | 1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945 | 1946 | 1947 | 1948 | 1949 | 1950 | 1951 | 1952 | 1953 | 1954 | 1955 | 1956 | 1957 | 1958 | 1959 | 1960 | 1961 | 1962 | 1963 | 1964 | 1965 | 1966 | 1967 | 1968 | 1969 | 1970 | 1971 | 1972 | 1973 | 1974 | 1975 | 1976 | 1977 | 1978 | 1979 | 1980 | 1981 | 1982 | 1983 | 1984 | 1985 | 1986 | 1987 | 1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 | 1992 | 1993 | 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014
April Fool's Day, 1919

Brandenburg Gate Photo. (1919) Hundreds of people, mostly shop girls and women, gathered in front of the Brandenburg gate in Berlin, drawn there by an announcement placed in Berlin papers the night before stating that a motion picture camera was going to take a picture in front of the gate at noon, and that everybody who was in front of the gate would be in the picture. The announcement was a prank perpetrated by a night worker at the papers. The Chicago Tribune foreign news service reported: "Some people stood there for hours before they realized that this was the first day of April, known in Germany as in the United States as April Fools' day." [Chicago Daily Tribune, Apr 5, 1919.]

Peace Treaty Signed. (1919) A prankster started a rumor alleging that a peace treaty ending World War I had been signed. According to the Associated Press: "The report rapidly spread over all Paris and the telephone wires to the American headquarters in the hotel de Crillon became hot with inquiries as to the truth of the rumor. It did not take long however, for inquiries to realize the character of the report when they were reminded that today was April 1st." The Treaty of Versailles, which marked the formal end of the war, was signed on June 28, 1919. [Daily Northwestern, Apr 1, 1919.]

Old Lady Takes Revenge. (1923) "It was April fool: why not have some fun, thought the little Italian boy as he stood behind his fruit stand in the market house. His thoughts soon took visible form. Tying a purse bulging with paper to one end of a string he fastened the other behind his counter and threw the tempting pocketbook in the aisle. Then he awaited results. In a few minutes long came a busy woman and seeing the tempting purse pounced on it. As it jerked from her hand, a whoop went up from the Italian. So it was a prank, was it? She would teach him how to get cute with an old lady! Then fruit began to fly. Orange after orange hurled at the dodging boy who was being constantly advised to duck and jump by a horde of delighted youngsters. The ammunition was more than oranges, for some bananas and grapefruit were spinning toward their owner. Not until all the fruit on top of the stand had been exhausted did the angry marketer stop her barrage and start on." [Indianapolis News]

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