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The Hoax Photo Archive — Photo Fakery Throughout History
Category: Head Transplants
U.S. Army Releases Doctored Photographs. (September 2008) Lacking an official photo of a deceased soldier, the U.S. Army instead released a doctored image to the media. More…
Sarah Palin in Bikini. (September 2008) After John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his running mate, provocative fake pictures of the Alaska Governor began to circulate online. More…
Vote for Dean Hrbacek. (January 2008) In this flyer distributed by Hrbacek's campaign, the candidate's head was pasted onto the body of a significantly slimmer man. More…
Martha’s Last Laugh. (March 2005) Newsweek indicated nowhere on the cover that this shot was actually a composite image of Martha Stewart's head pasted onto a model's body. More…
The Real Julia. (July 2003) Julia Roberts' head was pasted onto a younger version of her body. More…
Cut-and-Paste Diversity. (September 2000) University of Wisconsin-Madison officials pasted a black student's face into a crowd scene that appeared on the cover of the undergraduate application brochure (left). After the student newspaper revealed the alteration, embarrassed university officials explained they had wanted to highlight the campus's racial diversity, but had been unable to find a suitable photo. So they created one. The university subsequently attempted to recall all the brochures. More…
Tootsie Redressed. (Mar 1997 issue of Los Angeles magazine) Dustin Hoffman sued Los Angeles magazine for $5 million on account of this photo of his head pasted onto the body of a model wearing a silk gown. More…
White Hot Mama. (July 1992) Ann Richards, governor of Texas, appeared on the cover of Texas Monthly in a "Bad Girl" pose astride a white-and-chrome Harley-Davidson. But Richards hadn't posed for the photo because she was unable to schedule time for a photoshoot. Texas Monthly created the shot by combining a stock photo of her head with a picture of a model. Richards later said that she loved the photo. More…
Oprah’s Head Transplant. (August 26, 1989) Oprah Winfrey appeared on the cover of TV Guide (left) lounging in a gauzy dress on top of a pile of money. She looked glamorous, but only the head belonged to her. The body came from a 1979 publicity shot of Ann-Margret (right) taken for a Rockette special. More…
Lincoln’s Portrait. (Late 1860s) This standing portrait of Lincoln was created soon after the American Civil War. It hung in many classrooms, but Lincoln never posed for it. An unknown entrepreneur created it by cutting-and-pasting a headshot of Lincoln onto a portrait of the Southern leader John Calhoun. This was done because there were hardly any appropriate "heroic-style" portraits of Lincoln made during his life. More…
Petticoat Politics. (May 1865) A Northern photographer created this image of Confederate President Jefferson Davis in a dress. More…

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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.