In the year of 1937, a sea monster flew in the Macy's Thanksgivings Day Parade.
Early in August that same year, reports had come in that a strange creature had been spotted off the shores of Nantucket. Massachusetts was no stranger to large sea animals, as it served as a port for whaling ships.
The eyewitnesses swore it wasn't a whale. It was something different.
The witness accounts started to pile in, creating newspaper stories that spread across the nation and creating shivering fear all over the country.
Monstrous footprints were found on the beach in Nantucket, and photographs were sent for biologists to discuss.
On August 18th, islanders ran to the shore of the beach. The monster had been captured!
and it was...
Yep. You read that right. This is a TRUE "fake news" story. You might say it was just a publicity stunt. Oh, no. The newspapermen KNEW this was false, and yet they published it anyway. They knowingly published Fake News.
This is a great story to read with kids and discuss We need a free press which can print what they want. But the press needs to be fair and unbiased, only publishing the truth. There are dangers on both sides. If we prevent the free publication of news, we risk a dictatorship. But if the press oversteps and prints fake news, we risk rumors and movements based on falsehoods.
It's not just a sign of our times, though. It's been going on for years and years.
Here's the sea monster balloon flying in that year's parade.
The sea monster was seen by millions as it floated down the street.
I think it's safe to say that, this year, there probably won't be a sea monster in this year's parade. But y'know where you could find one anyway?
The Nantucket Sea Monster!
You can read more about the explosive news this balloon caused by clicking on the cover above!