|Clayton Bailey Press 01010001110101|
THE WONDERS OF THE WORLD MUSEUM - April 1976
|The "Wonders of the World Museum"
began as a backyard museum of "kaolithic
fossils" curated by "Dr. Gladstone" and Prof. Clayton
Bailey. Kaolithic fossils are made of thermally metamorphosed mud that
has been formed by digital implantation of the fingers of an artist.
The Museum collection included kaolithic fossil specimens of several well-known mythical animals, and an electric Fossil Tester with bells and whistles to show "Proof "in the event there was a question about the authenticity of the bones.)
In 1976, a neighbor, Bill Rich offered Bailey two thousand square feet of space in his Warehouse Building in downtown Port Costa. Here, Bailey and Gladstone installed the "Wonders of the World Museum" in a permanent indoor setting, and for a small admission charge, curiosity seekers could view the various mythical animals, unnatural historical specimens and other scientific discoveries from Port Costa, and from across the continent. Visitors are often heard asking one another," Is this stuff real, or not...?" and, "Is this a real bone or what ?"
Important looking documents and awards for scientific achievement were exhibited at the entrance to the museum. A uniformed museum attendant stood behind the counter to collect the admission fee. Bailey enjoyed distributing "Free Passes" to friends and strangers. (The Free Pass entitles the bearer to visit the museum for 25 cents, the same price everyone pays without a pass.)
Building the Wonders of the World Museum in the Warehouse was a family project, and it involved friends, neighbors and students from Cal State-Hayward. It was built from antique store fixtures, showcases, doors and chandeliers salvaged from Rich's warehouse, and other materials Bailey found at the local Flea Markets. Red carpets gave an air of importance and credibility to the lobby.
The museum opened with an extravaganza on Thursday, April 15, 1976. "The Unnatural Enquirer "was published by Lewis Stewart, a local writer and photographer. The Enquirer dedicated the entire issue to Dr. Gladstone's Wonders of the World Museum in Port Costa. A banquet of fried chicken wings and backs was held at the Warehouse. After dinner entertainment included a comic strip reading by S. Clay Wilson; a lecture about Hollywood Archaeology, by Lowell Darling , and a slide show about the Museum collection by Dr. Gladstone; followed by music, and a Medicine Show by Dr. Snootfull and the Old Hat Band of Seattle, Washington. An entertaining and educational time was had by more than 250 persons who attended the Grand Opening of the Wonders of the World Museum in Port Costa, CA.
The Curator of Kaolithic Curiosities; Professor Bailey explains that the "Wonders of the World Museum" is a pseudo-scientific and educational institution: a fossil Museum that "stands alone on earth; to show proof of the existence of mythical and legendary animals with its mammoth collection of kaolithic curiosities". He describes himself as the discoverer and interpreter of the finds, which were formed somewhere in the earth by unnatural forces of impaction and digital implantation, and found by the use of his unique fossil detector.
After 2 1/2 years on public display, the Wonders of the World Museum closed its doors and the specimens were returned to Clayton Bailey's back yard where they remain buried today. Souvenir skulls now are available to the public.
You can still order the Original Wonders of the World Museum Catalog.( Click here to see it's description:)