Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Cottingley Fairies

The unfortunate Bigfoot incident which took place earlier this month (don't get me started!) brought to mind another, much more interesting hoax. For two years, I've been meaning to write about the Case of the Cottingley Fairies. Now, the time has finally come.

In 1917, ten-year-old Frances Griffiths and her sixteen-year-old cousin Elsie Wright shocked all of England with five photographs they claimed to have taken near their home in the town of Cottingley. The photos seemed to show the girls posing with a number of tiny woodland fairies.

Now before everyone starts talking about how fake the photos look today, you must remember that back in 1917, photography was relatively new. The public still thought seeing was believing--and they weren't used to questioning evidence provided by their own two eyes. As a result, many people were absolutely convinced that the Cottingley photos were proof of the existence of fairies. Even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (the brilliant creator of Sherlock Holmes) was certain that the photos had not been faked.

(I'm of the opinion that most people were fooled by the photos because they believed two little girls could never have staged such an elaborate hoax.)

Alas, poor Mr. Conan Doyle was wrong. Elsie and Frances had indeed pulled the wool over England's eyes. And they refused to confess until 1981. As one said then, "I never even thought of it as being a fraud - it was just Elsie and I having a bit of fun and I can't understand to this day why they were taken in - they wanted to be taken in."

Find out how they did it here.


Blogger Kitty said...

I wonder how they did that...

4:56 PM  
Anonymous Patsee said...

Wow... something I've heard of before. I was actually thinking about these the other day.

Those girls never cease to amaze me.

5:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've always believed in fairies!!!!! But how could those girls fool the world like that?????? grrrr

Kirsten, you really should take a look at the cat with four ears thing I sent you. It's amazing!!!!

5:22 PM  
Blogger DeAnna said...

Lol I heard about that. Pretty awesome how everyone believed them!

7:34 PM  
Blogger liltomboyblue11;) said...

I have heard that story, I've actually seen a movie based on that story.

Anonymous: Believe it or not, I do to. I have seen a few fairies before.

9:29 PM  
Blogger Erin said...


What a cool, cool story.

1:31 AM  
Blogger MinnieMouseLoverxoxo said...

very smart girls

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Rhapsody said...

I find it amazing how they fooled everyone like that! Even though it was a hoax I kinda want to believe it actually happen. You never know if ther really is faries out there...

3:29 PM  
Blogger falcon said...

same as liltomboyblue, i saw that movie... and a fairy, once.

Those girls took another photo too, and they always said it was the only real one.

3:58 PM  
Anonymous ss ??? chick said...

I LOVE FAERIES!!!! I believe in them one hundred %. hey commenters? do you think being able to see ghosts is related w/ being able to see faeries? cuz liltomboyblue11;) has seen ghosts AND faeries, whereas i wholy believe in both and yet have never seen either. K( i certaintly hope not, i would love to be accepted into the world of faeries. and i wouldn't mind meeting a harmless ghost, although if i get to see (since i dont know how to be acquainted with such a 'person')than i dont really think i have much choice in whether it was harmless or not... hmm... i think liltomboyblue11;) is very lucky indeed.what do you guys think? about my earlier question on the relationship between being able to see such sights?

7:42 PM  
Anonymous max said...

after i read this, i did some editional research of my own. I guess there wasn't that much to actually learn more about, since the summary was pretty thourough, but i was really mad at a specific site that was marveling over how "little girls" fooled the world. WHAT DO THEY HAVE AGAINST SMALL PEOPLE??? AND GIRLS, TOO???

8:09 PM  
Anonymous 6yearsoldandcute said...

i wonder?xd

2:13 PM  
Blogger ThatChick_NicoleJohnson said...

I belive they were telling the truth. They were two young girls who held to their stories for a very long time. The same stories, If it wasnt true I dont think they could of held to the same stories without slipping up. I feel they were just pressured and tired so they said what they had to just to be left alone when they confessed. And in one article I read that one girl insisted that their really was fairies and that the fifth photograph really was real. Why Lie About the fifth one and confess to the others. I dont think we'll ever really know but either way if you think about it they gave the world hope and something good to believe in. Thats something the world needs now. I wish I knew what made them say the pictures werent real [I dont believe either ever said the faries werent real just the pics] I wish they would of just kept up their stories and never told otherwise. I believe and always will!

2:14 AM  

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