The 1956 Olympic Flame hoax was a hoax during the 1956 Summer Olympics, in which Barry Larkin, a veterinary student from Melbourne, pretended to be running with the Olympic Flame. Larkin and eight other students at St John's College, University of Sydney planned to protest against the Olympic Flame torch relay. One reason for the protest was that the torch relay was invented by the Nazis at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, their plan was for one student, dressed in a white top, to carry a fake torch. The fake torch was made of a wooden chair leg painted silver, on top of, a plum pudding can. A pair of underpants, worn by one of the students in National Service, was put inside the can, soaked in kerosene; the underpants were set on fire. Another student dressed as a motorcycle outrider by wearing a reserve airforce uniform; the torch was scheduled to enter Sydney, carried by Harry Dillon. Dillon would present the torch to the Lord Mayor of Pat Hills, at Sydney Town Hall. Hills would make a speech and pass the torch to Bert Button.
Before Dillon arrived, the two students went out carrying the fake torch. At the beginning, people noticed they were joking and the police laughed at them; the underpants fell out of the torch because the fake runner was swinging his arms too hard. The runner fled. Peter Gralton, one of the nine students, told Larkin to pick up the torch. With Larkin holding the torch, Gralton told him to run. Larkin did so, he ran the rest of the route, protected by police. Larkin presented the torch to Hills; as Hills was unprepared, he went straight to his speech. While Hills was talking, Larkin walked away, avoiding attention. Hills was not told. Hills looked around for Larkin; when the crowd discovered the torch was fake, they grew unruly. When Dillon arrived with the real torch, the crowd was still unsettled. Hills had to calm down the crowd and the police had to clear a path to allow Dillon to get through; when Button took the torch, an army truck had to clear his path. When Larkin returned to university, he was congratulated by the director of the college and was given a standing ovation by fellow students when he attended an exam that morning.
He was able to perpetrate the hoax because he was acquainted with Marc Marsden, the organiser of the real relay. Larkin went on to become a successful veterinary surgeon; the fake torch was taken to the reception of the main hall and ended up in the possession of John Lawler, travelling with the relay in a car. He kept it. During the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, the media reported the story of Larkin's hoax; as a result, police took measures to prevent any repetition of the hoax, including having security guards line the route. There were two attempts.
Lunsford Lindsay Lomax was an officer in the United States Army who resigned his commission to join the Confederate Army at the outbreak of the American Civil War. He had maintained a close friendship with his West Point classmate Fitzhugh Lee, served under him as a brigadier in the Overland Campaign, he was given command of the Valley District, where he supervised intelligence-gathering operations by Mosby's Rangers. Born in Newport, Rhode Island on November 4, 1835 to the former Elizabeth Virginia Lindsay and her husband, Major Mann Page Lomax, Lunsford Lomax was descended from the First Families of Virginia, his father was a career U. S. Army officer, specializing in artillery, who had served in New Orleans during the War of 1812, married in 1820 during his leave in Norfolk, Virginia, he was named for his great grandfather, Lunsford Lomax of "Portabago" plantation in Caroline County, who served part-time in the Virginia House of Burgesses from 1742 until 1756 representing that county before the American Revolutionary War.
His grandfather Thomas Lomax served on the Caroline County Committee of Safety during the Revolutionary War and in the Virginia House of Delegates. His father died of tuberculosis in Massachusetts when this Lunsford Lomax was seven, he had five sisters, Virginia, Victoria and Mary. His mother raised him and his sisters in Norfolk, but by 1860 the Lomax womenfolk had moved to Washington, D. C. After a private education, Lunsford Lomax received an "at-large" appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, he graduated in 1856 with friend Fitzhugh Lee. Lunsford Lomax married Elizabeth Winter Payne, like him descended from the First Families of Virginia, on February 20, 1873 in Fauquier County and they would have daughters Elizabeth Lindsay Lomax Wood and Anne Tayloe Lomax. Assigned to the prestigious 2nd Cavalry regiment, Lomax fought on the frontier and served in Bleeding Kansas during the years preceding the conflict Lomax resigned from the army in April 1861, shortly thereafter accepted a captain's commission in Virginia state militia.
Assigned to Joseph E. Johnston's staff as assistant adjutant general, Lomax served as inspector general for Benjamin McCulloch. Promoted to lieutenant colonel, he was transferred back to the Eastern Theater. Appointed colonel of the 11th Virginia Cavalry in time for the Gettysburg campaign, Lomax was promoted to brigadier general after the battle. Lomax fought his brigade under the division command of his old classmate Fitzhugh Lee from Culpeper Courthouse through the Wilderness and around Petersburg, he was promoted to major general in August 1864, was assigned to assist General Jubal Early in the Shenandoah Valley. After escaping capture at the Battle of Woodstock, Lomax was given command of the Valley District; when Richmond was evacuated, Lomax tried to join forces with John Echols's men at Lynchburg, but unable to do so, Lomax surrendered with Joe Johnston in North Carolina. Lesser known is Lomax's role in the formation of the partisan units that fought in Northern Virginia during the latter part of the War.
In a statement made to Caroline Harper Long shortly before his death, published in the Baltimore Sun in 1920 by Beth Rhoades, entitled "Gray Ghost of the Confederacy," John Mosby writes: General Lomax was with McCulloch in West Tennessee and after McCulloch was killed he was with Van Dorn. In the Fall of 1862 he was ordered to Richmond on a special mission, he was detailed back to Van Dorn just before Christmas. He placed in command of the 11th Virginia Cavalry; when Lomax was in Richmond he learned of his future transfer to Virginia. He had a scout sent up from Tennessee to assess the military information situation and to set up partisan scouts in the Shenandoah Valley. Up to that time everything in this area had been disorganized and difussed and ineffective. Lomax wanted a scouting system identical with the excellent system which existed in West Tennessee, he selected a man by the name of Boyd. He had been a railroad detective and he was among the best they had, he arrived in Richmond several days before Lomax left and Boyd proceeded on to Staunton where he was met by one of Winder's detectives by the name of Turner.
Boyd recruited and trained some 35 to 40 men in Rockingham and Augusta counties and formed them into the Linville Partisan Rangers. He taught them the fine points of scouting, telegraph line tapping, use of blasting powder, all the other things a good scout needs to know. Boyd did a fine job of setting up the partisans in the Valley. Lomax had arranged for me to begin independent operations in Loudoun County to the North. I got started about the first of the year. At that time I only had a few men, less than a dozen but we soon expanded and trained the men we had. We never were a large group. We had to dissolve into the countryside in a few minutes. Secrecy was our greatest ally. We didn't drill like regulars and we had no permanent camps to provide that camp drudgery so disliked by regulars. We used dinner bells and whistles to signal with and to cause assembly.... In June of that year my outfit was designated the 43rd Battalion Partisan Rangers, but on his way back to Tennessee Boyd was captured and in fact did not get back to Tennessee before Lomax was transferred to Virginia.
In February, after the capture o