TROVE TUESDAY: April Fool’s Day… then and now

jester_hatI’ve never been much of a prankster except for a few times I stuck a sign on one of my brother’s back reading “kick me”. Not real original.  Now my mum just loved April Fool’s Day which I wrote about briefly HERE.

This year I’ve been musing over where mum got her sense of humour and whether, in days gone by, our ancestors also played jokes on April Fool’s Day.  With it being Trove Tuesday… to the old newspapers I headed.


Back in Time

I remember mum saying that her mum, my Nana (Elizabeth Mary Murray Evans Allan) was not just a feisty woman but also quite a jokester, so I decided to check out the Port Pirie newspapers which is where she would have been living at that time, with her first husband and two of her three children.

There was no joy to be had there as the Port Pirie Recorder was full of doom and gloom, not the least of which was the huge miner’s strike taking place in Broken Hill and affecting many workers, and industries including those in nearby Port Pirie.

Banner. The Port Pirie Recorder

STRIKE AT BROKEN HILL. 2 Apr 1913. p1. The Port Pirie Recorder, South Australia, Australia

There was no sense in checking out newspapers in other locations, for most of my maternal ancestors lived in surrounding districts and would have been similarly affected by the miner’s strike. So a general search for April Fool’s Day 1913 was my next port of call and these items in the Adelaide Advertiser, although not published in 1913, drew my attention.

AN APRIL FOOL’S DAY JOKE. 2 Apr 1914. p8.   The Advertiser: Adelaide, South Australia.

ALL FOOLS’ DAY. 31 Mar 1919. pg.6.  The Advertiser: Adelaide, South Australia.

Logging on this morning I found that even the “techy big kids” have been at it this April Fool’s Day

April Fools’ 2013: The best techy pranks of the day. ZDNet. 1 Apr 2013

This is my favourite… I wonder which is yours? Just click on the link above  to check them all out   🙂

My favourite IT April Fool's Day joke for 2013

My favourite IT April Fool’s Day joke for 2013

Many thanks to Amy Houston for setting up the Trove Tuesday meme and also to TROVE… where would we be without you?

TROVE ~~~~~~~~~


Here we are… Port Pirie is north of the capital city, Adelaide (just above the “leg”) and Broken Hill is in NSW, just over the north east corner of South Australia .


Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

6 thoughts on “TROVE TUESDAY: April Fool’s Day… then and now

    • Me too Rose… it absolutely cracked me up. Have to admit though that if I had not known it was a prank, I’d probably have been looking at it admiringly for quite awhile before finally “the penny dropped”. ha ha ha… 😀

  1. I don’t give much thought to April Fools’ Day — unless someone plays a joke on me and then I’m a little grouchy. (I don’t much like being teased.) But this was an interesting post because of the newspaper articles. I’ll have to do a search in the local newspapers of my ancestors. Maybe for next year.

    • It’d be fun to see what you can find in those papers Nancy. I hated being teased too and your post made me think that some April Fool’s Day jokes are focussed on the person and making them feel stupid whereas some are more generalised… such as the parcel found on the footpath. Those are fun, I reckon.
      Thanks for dropping by Nancy… lovely to hear from you.

    • Old newspapers are so so good, eh? … It’s great to get a perspective on what life was like for the Ancestors, way back then.
      The clippings you post which illustrate so beautifully a topic your Grandmother raised in her Diary of 100 years ago fill me with wonder. Not only because of 100 years timeframe but because of a very different culture to mine, and that of my Ancestors. Thanks so much for the sharing Sheryl.

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