Claim: A serious prospectus inviting investors to become part of a cat-and-rat farm was once circulated, the basic premise of which involved skinning cats for their fur, feeding the cat carcasses to rats, then feeding the rats to the cats being raised for their fur.
grey-bearded leg pull has been around for a whopping 125 years, since that day in 1875 when
Not until April 1940, when an article appeared in Goldfish Bowl (a publication of the National Press Club of Washington, D.C.), was the famous Lacon, Illinois, ranch for felines and rodents widely revealed as a hoax.
The spurious prospectus on which the Associated Press news
accounts were based read as follows:
Glorious Opportunity To Get Rich!!! — We are starting a cat ranch in Lacon with 100,000 cats. Each cat will average
Barbara “ratified” Mikkelson
Sightings: The 1934 film Maniac contains this urban legend, and various music lovers have informed me that on its 1985 album New Day Rising, Husker Du features a song called “How to Skin a Cat.” The lyrics, I’m told, go something like “We’ll feed the rats to the cats and the cats to the
Last updated: 10 August 2011
MacDougall, Curtis. Hoaxes.
New York: Dover Publications, 1958 (p. 243). Sifakis, Carl. The Big Book of Hoaxes. New York: Paradox Press, 1996. ISBN 1-563-89252-9 (p. 41). Tan, Paul Lee. Encyclopedia of 7700 Illustrations. Rockville, Maryland: Assurance Publishers, 1979. ISBN 0-88469-100-4 (p. 289).