Introducing Captain Preston L. Vapoor

Bizarrities Founder
Captain Preston L. Vapoor
San Francisco, CA 1872

Captain Preston L. Vapoor was a sea captain, veteran of the Confederacy, and early treasure seeker in the Oregon Territory, California, and the Far East. He had a remarkable knack for collecting items that were imbued with what he termed ‘spiritual power’ and was instrumental in creating the ‘mystical revival’ in San Francisco, Oakland, and the Bay Area in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. His ‘Bizarrities’ shows were a staple in San Francisco theatres and offered early inspiration to the likes of Jack London, John Steinbeck, and many other influential California writers, artists, and musicians. It is said that his performances, spectacles, and speeches ended with the line “we are happy to have had you here this evening, ladies and gentlemen, to view these wonders in person, with the grateful dead.”