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We used to live in Wichita Falls (early 70’s) and traveled to Dallas on occasion, but since I wasn’t into old movie palaces back then I missed the opportunity to see this atmospheric treasure!
Bryan: Well, that’s great news! Thank goodness, but the folks of Houston sure lost a treasure when they brought their Majestic to the ground!
Through cinema site research I had to add this one to my favorites as it was Eberson’s FIRST atmospheric theatre! And it, too, was demolished. “…the ceiling was blue with stars moving overhead.” I’m beginning to hate the word….demolished! I have Houston friends who I must ask about their memories of the Majestic. It sounds as if the Majestic was truly that….majestic! Are the Majestics in San Antonio and Dallas still standing?
In reading about John Eberson and his son, Drew (inserted below) there was mention of a former Hamilton OH theater called the Jewel which was Eberson’s earliest known conventional theater. And the Jewel is not listed on our cinema site for a theater in Hamilton OH.
“Eberson was born in Cernauti, Bukovina, a region of Romania. He attended high school in Dresden and studied at the University of Vienna in 1893. After escaping from prison (he was incarcerated after a disagreement with a superior officer in his military regiment) Eberson moved to the United States and settled in St. Louis, Missouri. His earliest atmospheric experiments are found in his stage design and painting work between 1901-03 for the Johnston Realty and Construction Company. Eberson’s earliest known conventional theater commission was for the Jewel in Hamilton, Ohio (1909). After moving to Chicago in 1910 he began to receive steady theater design work. While his early commissions could be characterized as traditional, by the mid-1910’s Eberson had clearly forged a new direction with the Austin Majestic (1916) and Dallas Majestic theaters (1917). His first truly Atmospheric Theater, the Houston Majestic, opened in 1923. The Atmospheric Theaters reflected Eberson’s European heritage. Italian influences,especially in statuary and interior motifs. In addition, were landscape and garden influences. Eberson’s theater interiors contained numerous fountains and grottoes.
[Adapted from an exhibition publication of the Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Art Gallery, Hunter College (1988)]
ff514ny: We have friends who live in Chagrin Falls so I must ask them about their Falls memories. Keep that marquee print…wish my hometown theatre had done a print of it’s last movie!
Another very sad demolition theatre story! The fact that it is a demolished Eberson-atmospheric theatre is a very hard pill to swallow!
This being an Eberson theatre I had to include it on my favorites list! Can anyone give me background information on the 2 Eberson names….Drew and John? Were they related?
I have Cinema Treasures thanks to Santa! I suggest that if you are thinking about purchasing this one to do so as you won’t be disappointed in the least! In fact, I’m sharing it with many of my friends to get them interested in becoming movie buffs and finding cinematreasures.org!
So sad that a theatre with South Pacific decor would be demolished. Too bad that someone or some group couldn’t have saved this theatre and it’s soul as all theatres have a soul! Where on the daytondailynews site is the article? Thanks.
A great overnight stay in Fredonia would be the White Inn located on Main Street and is within walking distance to the Fredonia Opera House. And less than 20 miles to the west on Route 20 is my former hometown art deco theatre, the Grand which “was” located on the corner of Main and N. Portage. There is a small park there now with a statue of Abe Lincoln and Grace Bedell who wrote Lincoln a letter asking him to grow a beard! Nearby is the train station where Lincoln stopped enroute to Washington as he wanted to meet Ms. Grace Bedell, in person! He did!
Larry: I, for one, so much appreciate you taking the time to include your Fox thoughts on this cinema site. My husband and I truly enjoyed meeting you and Mighty Mo! I recently attended a MTOS dinner/meeting. Our longtime Atlanta friends sent me the Fox 2 hour video during the holidays so we showed that wonderful tape to the Metrolina Theatre Organ Society group and they fell in love with the Fox all over again. In fact, one of the members, Charlie Clayton who is originally from Atlanta and has known Joe Patten and the organist prior to you, Mr. VanCamp for many years so he truly enjoyed the video! So whenever we find ourselves back in Atlanta we’ll come by to share a glass of wine. BTW, we would love to meet the “phantom”, too! God Bless you and God Bless the Fabulous Fox! Happy New Year!
sam_e: Thanks for the updated NFTOS to RTOPS! Can’t wait to enter the Riv, look and listen! Maybe we could meet you there so will keep in touch come springtime!
Sadly, “was” in Hawaii!
I had to add this one to my favorites just because IT’S IN HAWAII!
Charles: Made email correction….thanks again for the Riv info!
Very interesting to note that on Valentine’s Day 1989 the Riv became the loving property of the Niagara Frontier Theatre Organ Society! What better group to maintain the theatre and it’s organ than a dedicated organ society! Congratulations!
Charles: Tried to send email, but is undeliverable!?!
THANK YOU CHARLES! MUCH APPRECIATED!
If anyone clicks on the Mapquest location for the Grand it was not north of I-90, but south of the NYS Thurway at the corner of N. Portage and Main Street.
Must be something to see an ‘atmospheric’ church in Milwaukee WS! This one interests me because of the former Grand name as my hometown theatre was called the Grand, also.
Have a safe trip and when you return please let us know what you saw on your CA theater research trip!
KenRoe: There are many wonderful theatres in the USA, but then again perhaps you only post the ones you have actually visited? Many of mine are those I have never seen, in person, and the rest I have visited (most recently the Fabulous Fox/Atlanta) or hope to in the coming years.
sam_e: Funny post! When I read about the Avalon I, too, hear those lyrics and that song in my head! I recall it being “26 miles” also, but then again it seems that lyricists sometimes take special license to rhyme words or in this case….numbers to make them flow better in a song.
I just added this one to my favorites as it’s another grand art deco lady!
My husband and I lived in Wichita Falls TX during his USAF years and so we recall going to see movies at the Wichita Theater.