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The Hoax Museum Blog
Hoaxes, mischief, and misinformation throughout history
The Michigan Relics
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jan 01, 2004
In October, 1890 James Scotford unearthed some relics while digging postholes for a fence in Montcalm County, Michigan. The relics appeared to demonstrate the prior existence of a Near Eastern culture in ancient America. They were eventually debunked as frauds, though not before attracting a lot of attention and stirring up lots of controversy. Now the relics are on display again. The Michigan Historical Museum has a special exhibit devoted to them titled 'Digging Up Controversy: The Michigan Relics.' Much of the exhibit can be viewed online. Definitely worth checking out.
Categories: History Comments (0)
The Land of Molvania
Posted by The Curator on Mon Dec 29, 2003
If you're looking for an interesting place to visit on your next vacation, you might want to check out Molvania. It's located over in Eastern Europe and is famous as the birthplace of the whooping cough. Also home to the Molvanian Sneezing Hound. If you want to learn even more about this little-known country then get a copy of Molvania: A Land Untouched by Modern Dentistry, by Jetlag Travel.
Categories: Places Comments (4)
The Sasquatch Militia
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 28, 2003
The Republic of Cascadia is recruiting for the Sasquatch Militia. Help defend the Sasquatch homeland against invading cryptozoologists, Canadians, and others. Militia activities include boulder throwing, stomping, and delimbing.
Categories: Cryptozoology, Military Comments (0)
Friends of Silver Lake
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 28, 2003
The Friends of Silver Lake purports to be a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in LA's Silver Lake district. Their projects include supporting the construction of a new shopping mall in Silver Lake that will be home to stores such as Wal-Mart and The Gap, because otherwise Silver Lake residents might have to drive up to ten miles to find these retailers (the horror!). Also, they're pushing a workplace diversity initiative to get more 'middle-class youngsters' employed in the food service and retail industries since, according to them, this demographic is underrepresented in these industries. Seems a little tongue-in-cheek to me. (Thanks to Chris Kelly for the link).
Categories: Places Comments (0)
Where Is My Gnome
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 28, 2003
Bill has lost his garden gnome. Someone stole it from his lawn. Now he's hoping that you can help him find it. There's even a 1-800 number you can call if you have any info, but Dani, who told me about the site, reports that if you call the number "a nervous sounding man asks you to leave a message if you have information about his gnome, then before the beep, he says 'Mom, if this is you, hang up now.'"
The Death Clock
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 28, 2003
The Internet Death Clock will calculate the time of your death, telling you exactly how many seconds you have left to live. But Chris has written in noting that there's something fishy about it because every time you click the button to calculate your time of death, you get a different number. I would add that I once had a fortune teller read my tarot cards and tell me when I was going to die, and the internet death clock doesn't agree with this reading... so it must be a hoax. (note: sarcasm intended).
Categories: Death Comments (16)
Hampton Court Ghost
Posted by The Curator on Sat Dec 20, 2003
Quite a few people have sent me links to this: a ghost captured on film exiting Hampton Court Palace (where Henry VIII once lived). Or maybe it's just a guy wearing a bathrobe and a mask.
Categories: Paranormal Comments (16)
MIT Honors the Wright Brothers
Posted by The Curator on Sat Dec 20, 2003
A couple of days ago a replica of the Wright Brothers' plane refused to fly. But nevertheless, the plane still managed to make a successful landing on top of MIT's Great Dome.
Categories: Pranks Comments (0)
Tall-Tale Postcards
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
The American Museum of Photography has a nice collection of William H. "Dad"�Martin's tall-tale photographs online. Martin made a fortune selling tall-tale postcards during the early twentieth century. He had a company called the Martin Post Card Company based in Ottawa, Kansas.
Record-Breaking Snowflake
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
Was the 15 inch snowflake that was recorded to have fallen in eastern Montana on Jan. 28, 1887 a tall tale? It was either that or a bunch of snowflakes frozen together.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales Comments (0)
Vindication for Man Will Never Fly Society
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
The reenactment of the Wright Brothers' first flight failed. I hate to say it, but the members of the Man Will Never Fly Society, whom I linked to just a few posts below, did predict that would happen.
Diet Holy Water
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
If you're feeling a little sinful, wash away your sins with some Diet Holy Water. Now, I don't think this is a hoax in the sense that this stuff isn't really for sale. Instead I'm linking to it because it seems like a marketing effort that has tongue firmly in cheek.
Categories: Food, Religion Comments (1)
The Voynich Manuscript Solved?
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
Computer Scientist Gordon Rugg may have proven that the mysterious Voynich Manuscript (the famously untranslatable medieval book full of pictures of naked women) is a hoax. He theorizes that it was created by a sixteenth-century Englishman named Edward Kelley in order to con Emperor Rudolph II. Kelley could have created the book by using an encryption device called a Cardan Grille. Voynich scholars are still undecided about Rugg's theory, but whether or not Rugg is right, it should now just be a matter of time before he lapses into insanity, as many other scholars who have spent too long obsessing about the Voynich Manuscript have done.
Categories: Literature/Language Comments (14)
Garden Gnomes Under Threat
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 17, 2003
Residents of Derbyshire (in the north Midlands of England) have received official-looking letters threatening them with criminal prosecution if they don't remove all gnomes from their gardens. The presence of the gnomes supposedly runs afoul of government planning regulations. Real officials warn that the letters are a hoax.
Categories: Gnomes Comments (0)
Saddam Claus
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 14, 2003
John Walkenbach has a great photoshop on his weblog (J-Walk): the disguise Saddam Hussein was wearing when he was captured.
Categories: Military Comments (1)
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