The Museum of Hoaxes
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Prankster causes volcano to erupt, 1974
Bonsai Kittens, 2000
The disumbrationist art hoax, 1924
Samsung invents the on/off switch
Stotham, Massachusetts: the town that didn't exist, 1920
The boy with the golden tooth, 1593
Jernegan's Gold Accumulator Scam, 1898
Van Gogh's ear exhibited, 1935
The most sacred relic: the Holy Foreskin, circa 800 AD
The Stone-Age Tasaday Hoax, 1971
The Earl of Buckingham
Status: Imposter
image The scam of pretending to be British peerage is still going strong. A few months ago we heard about that guy in Minnesota who was picking up teenage girls by claiming to be the Fifth Duke of Cleveland (aka the Earl of Scooby). Now comes word of a far more elaborate scam. The man in question called himself Christopher Buckingham, the Earl of Buckingham. He had been living under that identity for almost twenty years. Police realized last year that he was living under a false name when his passport got checked as he was crossing the Channel. (The real Christopher Buckingham had died as an infant.) But police couldn't figure out what his true identity was. Until now. Turns out he's Charles Stopford of Florida. The Stopford family recognized him when they saw a story about him in The Times. He had disappeared twenty years ago and they had no clue what became of him.
Categories: Identity/Imposters
Posted by The Curator on Tue May 09, 2006
Comments (8)
One wonders if the guy actually beleived it himself..

Lot of delusional folks out there. If people sometimes didn't think they were someone else, we'd still have John Lennon.
Posted by Robin Bobcat  in  Californian Wierdo  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  01:18 AM
After twenty years I'd start believing I was blue blood as well... But originally I don't think he did, after all he assumed that identity via fraud: the guys who think they're Elvis and whatnot DEMAND that they be recognized as such.
Posted by Gutza  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  02:49 AM
These stories remind me of Emperor Norton, and, especially, of Lord Buckley.
http://www.lordbuckley.com

Lord Buckley was quite generous in bestowing titles on not only himself, but all his family, friends, and associates. Hang around him long enough and you'd become Lady So-And-So, Duke Somebody, Prince Something, or the like.

And why not? Who says you and I don't have just as much right to give out titles as that uppity Queen of England?
Posted by Baron Big Gary  in  the Land of Equality  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  01:53 PM
I almost forgot the great Huey "Kingfish" Long, whose perpetual campaign promise was to make "Every man a king and every lady a queen."
Posted by Baron Big Gary  in  the Land of Equality  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  01:55 PM
I have given most of my friends titles, also I decided what countries I would give them if I rules the world as well. I think it's just me. I'm slightly insane.
Posted by Dracul  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  03:30 PM
I call myself King RAMChYLD the Immortal, ruler of DavidReka, every so often.
Posted by RAMChYLD  in  Klang, Malaysia  on  Tue May 09, 2006  at  08:44 PM
i knew a guy who brought a tiny piece of land in scotland just so he could be known as a lord, but he was very up himself, liked to pretend he was really posh and belived he was a reincarnation of two german pilots, one from WW1 and one from WW2.. oh and his pet cat was his co pilot

he was irritating, what must have been irritating for him is that he had a white trash 20 year old student who was technically a Lord
Posted by joeodd  on  Thu May 11, 2006  at  06:54 AM
This case is worthy of a Hollywood plot. A man rakes the name of a baby who has been dead for forty years plus and lives the highlife, even managing to have a jial term cut by twelve months. Now, he will be extradited to the States, jailed for fifty years and come out in a box. This charade has caught up with Charles Albert Stopford III.
Posted by KFM  on  Wed May 24, 2006  at  12:23 AM
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