Indiana outlaw Frank Reno and two of his gang members were in a Council Bluffs, Iowa jail at the end of March 1868. They had robbed three county treasuries before being captured by William Pinkerton and other agents of the famed detective agency. The outlaws were set to be tried and faced long prison terms.
But on April 1, the three dug a hole in the jail wall and escaped. Above the hole, in chalk, they wrote “April Fools!” The escapees made it back to Indiana and continued their criminal activities.