The Museum of Hoaxes
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Mencken's fake history of the bathtub, 1917
The Hoaxing Hitchhiker, 1941
Bizarre pictographs of Emmanuel Domenech, 1860
The Cottingley Fairies, 1917
Samsung invents the on/off switch
Female thieves hide money in their bras, 1950
Swiss peasants harvest spaghetti from trees, 1957
Baby Yoga, aka Swinging Your Kid Around Your Head
Stotham, Massachusetts: the town that didn't exist, 1920
September Morn, the painting that shocked the censor, 1913
A Meeting in Augsburg -- April Fool's Day, 1530
According to legend, a meeting of lawmakers was supposed to occur in Augsburg on April 1, 1530 in order to unify the state coinage. Unscrupulous speculators, who had knowledge of it beforehand, began to trade currencies in preparation, to profit from the change. However, because of time considerations, the meeting didn't take place, and the law wasn't enacted. So the speculators who had bet on the meeting occurring, lost their money and were ridiculed. German folklore has it that this was the origin of the custom of playing pranks on April 1.


Augsburg, circa 1500

April Fool Categories: Germany, Before 1700.
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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.