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The April Fool Archive:
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←1950 April Fool's Day, 1951 1952→
Paris All Dressed Up (1951)
In honor of April Fool's Day, French fashion designer Jean Dessès used photomontages to dress Parisian landmarks in his gowns. For instance, he outfitted a street lamp in sight of the Eiffel Tower in a softly tailored beige and brown wool suit and a brown felt hat.
Margaret Truman’s Rearmament Tour (1951) A West German newspaper reported that Margaret Truman, daughter of President Harry Truman, was planning to make a concert tour of West Germany "to inspire German approval of rearmament."

Margaret Truman had launched a singing career in 1947, though her performances often received negative reviews. Music critic Paul Hume wrote in 1950 that she was "extremely attractive on the stage... [but] cannot sing very well. She is flat a good deal of the time. And still cannot sing with anything approaching professional finish."
Spider on your back (1951) Peanuts by Charles Schulz. April 2, 1951.
The Hypnotron (1951) Radio-Electronic's annual April Fool article, credited to Mohammed Ulysses Fips, described an automatic sleep inducer called the Hypnotron created by a Soviet scientist, Professor Vladimir Ivanovitch Nikulturno. The device was said to be an audio oscillator that produced a series of signals of random pitch and duration. Users simply counted each signal, as if they were counting sheep, and within 15 minutes they would be asleep.

Fips claimed the device had quickly become wildly popular among the sleep-deprived populace of Russia. So much so that Soviet leaders feared the nation's productivity was being "undermined by a sleep-gadget." As a result, Professor Nikulturno had been executed and his invention destroyed.
The Campus Denounced (1951) The April Fool issue of the City College of New York's student paper, The Campus, provoked a strong reaction from the faculty and administration of the school. Dean James Peace denounced its "blatant vulgarity" and said it was "so disgusting that it could hardly be called funny." Copies of the issue were collected and destroyed by the college.

The lead article in the issue declared that the college's charter had been revoked by the Board of Higher Education. Other articles satirized faculty and administrators. No real names were used, though photos made it easy to identify victims.

The most controversial article accused college President "Harvey N. Sprite" of sexually attacking his secretary. A photo of the actual college president, Dr. H.N. Wright, ran next to the story.
Pedestrian Overpass Collapses (1951) The San Antonio Light reported the collapse of a pedestrian overpass, though it noted that "the collapse might have been engineered by subversive elements":
"children had just passed over the span on their way to the school's playground when the steel structure began to vibrate. As they turned to watch, open-mouthed, the structure fell 40 feet onto the concrete roadway with a thunderous crash. A Light photographer was photographing a kite-flying competition nearby and rushed to the scene to take the dramatic picture shown above."

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