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There is an early photo of the Regent Theatre on this page of a promotional booklet published by the Federal Cement Tile Company of Chicago in the 1920s.
The principals of the architectural firm were William B. Stratton and Dalton J. Von Schneider.
The original architect of the Aubert Theatre was Paul Klingensmith. The Aubert was on a list of theaters in a booklet published by the Federal Concrete Tile Company, which features a photo of it at the bottom of this page.
An item in the November 28, 1925, issue of Motion Picture News listed the Midwest Theatre as one of three recently opened houses that had been designed by the firm of R. Levine & Co. Edward Rupert was one of the firm’s architects. The company was very active. One source I came across said that R. Levine & Co. built 27 theaters in 1926.
An item in the November 28, 1925, issue of Motion Picture News listed the Milo Theatre as one of three houses recently opened that had been designed by R. Levine & Co.
This item appeared in the November 28, 1925, issue of Motion Picture News:
“Detroit — Plans are being prepared by E. J. Knopke, 1101 Lafayette Bldg., for erection of theatre bldg., stores and offices at Gratiot and 7 Mile Rd.”
The November 28, 1925, issue of The Film Daily also notes DeFoe & Besecke as architects for a theater to be built on this block, though it gives the locations as 39th and Main Streets and the Madrid is closer to 38th Street. Original plans also called for more seats:
“Kansas City — DeFoe & Besecke, Archts., have completed plans for erection of theatre bldg. at 39th & Main Sts. on site 65 x 165. Seat. Cap. 3,000. Approx. Cost $200,000. Owner— R. L. Willis, 3804-06 Main St.”
I still don’t know if the Gem Theatre that Roy Jones sold to L. H. Chamberlain in 1930 was demolished, or merely expanded to accommodate the Masonic Lodge upstairs, or if the lodge and new theater were actually on a different site than the original theater, but the Gem could have been the house that was the subject of this item from the November 28, 1925, issue of The Film Daily:
“Des Moines — Plans are being drawn by W. D. Holtzman, 406 Flynn Bldg.. Archt., for erection of theatre bldg. and stores (2) on site 100 x 50 ft. to be erected on Beaver St. nr. Sheridan. Owner — R. G. Jones, c/o Archt.”
This Rootsweb page about Delos R. Bly has his obituary, published in 1944, which says that he had owned the Ohio Theatre in Conneaut since 1929. As the Ohio is not listed in the 1929 FDY, it must have opened too late that year to be included.
D. R. Bly also owned the State Theatre at the time it opened in late 1925.
The 1929 FDY lists the 350-seat Main Theatre in Conneaut, but no Academy Theatre. I think the Academy might have been renamed the Main in late 1927. The January 28, 1928 issue of The Film Daily said that M. A. Shae had bought an interest in the Main and La Grande Theatres in Conneaut.
The November 28, 1925, issue of The Film Daily had this item:
“Columbus.— J. E. Outcalt, 186 E. Broad St., is drawing plans for erection of theatre bldg. to be erected at Cleveland Ave. & Myrtle Ave., on site 50 x 100. Aprox. Cost $20,000. Owner— New Linden Amusement Co.”
A letter dated January 11, 1916, from the Academy Theatre in Conneaut was displayed in an ad from the Gold King Screen Company that was published in the February 5, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World. The letter said that a Gold King screen had been in use at the Academy for about two years.
The 1927 FDY lists the Academy with 350 seats.
The January 5, 1926, issue of The Film Daily said that the State Theatre in Conneaut had opened.
The Graphic Theatre in Bangor was mentioned in the August 28, 1915, issue of The Moving Picture World.
The Capitol Theatre was designed by architect William Harold Lee, and opened on December 21, 1925. This information is from an article in a 1965 issue of The Journal of the Lancaster County Historical Society (PDF here) about the Lancaster theaters operated by the Krupa family in the early 20th century, written by George and Elsie Krupa’s daughter, Catherine Krupa.
The article reveals that the Hippodrome Theatre, which the Krupas began operating in 1912, was destroyed by a fire on December 29, 1924. The house was only days from reopening after undergoing a major remodeling, and was to have been renamed the Aldine Theatre, when it burned to the ground. The Capitol was an entirely new theater built on the Hippodrome’s site.
One notable feature of the new Capitol was a four-rank Robert Morton organ. Ms. Krupa devotes a considerable part of the article to this instrument, having been one of the theater’s organists herself. In 1926, the Krupas sold the Capitol, and the nearby Hamilton Theatre, which they had acquired in 1916, to the Stanley Company.
Brechtbug: The four large downtown Lancaster theaters dennisczimmerman referred to that were demolished were the Boyd, the Capitol, the Grand, and the Hamilton. I believe they were all razed during the 1960s as part of a redevelopment project, so you probably just missed them by a year or two.
Teatro Silvia Pinal decamped from these quarters some years ago, and since 2009 the Cine Estadio has been occupied by a church called the Cenáculo de la Fe. As Google is not fetching a street view for our page, here’s one direct from Google Maps.
Three photos of Cine Estadio can be seen on this page of Boxoffice, February 4, 1950. A nocturnal photo of the front can be seen at lower right on this page of the same issue.
There is a photo of the Ras Tanura Theatre on this page of Boxoffice, February 4, 1950.
Decorator Hanns Teichert wrote an article about the Alameda Theatre for Boxoffice. It appeared in the issue of February 4, 1950. Here are links:
Linkrot repair: The February 4, 1950, Boxoffice page about the Capitan Theatre can now be found at this link.
An article in the October 29, 1964, issue of the Petersburg Progress-Index said that the Strand Theatre building in Hopewell was being demolished. The Strand, which had been in operation by 1917, had been gutted by a fire in the mid-1930s and had remained derelict ever since. The rubble of the theater was to be used to fill in the hole which had once been the basement of the Grand Central Hotel.
The Idle Hour was one of Petersburg’s African-American theaters.
Here are some lines from a June 19, 1968, Petersburg Progress-Index article tracing the history of the Bluebird Theatre name:
“The present location of the Bluebird was originally the Old Lyric Theater back in 1910 or 1911. It was then used for vaudeville comedy acts. Then in 1918 or 1919 it became the Bluebird. Later the Bluebird Company moved the Bluebird to where the National Shoe Store is now and the old site became the Palace Theater. Neighborhood Theaters bought Bluebird from the Bluebird Company about 30 years ago.”
The Lyric Theatre was actually opened before 1910, and was mentioned in the September 8, 1908, issue of The Billboard, which said that the coming season in Petersburg promised to be bright, with the opening of the “…Majestic, Virginia and Lyric moving picture and vaudeville houses….” It added that contracts had been let for two more vaudeville and picture houses, and improvements had been made to the Academy of Music, the town’s legitimate house.
The September 20, 1964, issue of the Progress-Index noted that there was also a Palace Theatre in operation at Petersburg before the once-and-future Bluebird took that name. It was located on the east side of Sycamore Street a few doors below Franklin. The article did not mention its years of operation.
The Bluebird Theatre in operation in 1919 was the house that opened in 1908 as the Lyric Theatre, then became the Bluebird, then the Palace, and then in 1959 the New Bluebird Theatre. An article in the September 20, 1964, issue of the Petersburg Progress-Index said that the second Bluebird Theatre (this house) had opened as the Colonial Theatre (the second Petersburg house of that name, just to add further complication) but the article doesn’t give the year of its opening or the year that it became the Bluebird.
An article in the September 20, 1964, issue of the Petersburg Progress-Index said that the Century Theatre Company was chartered in 1917, so the theater must have been opened by 1918. In its early years the Century featured Keith vaudeville.
The October 6, 1917, issue of The American Contractor had this item:
“Petersburg, Va.—Theater & Store Bldg.: $50,000. 1 sty. Asso. Archts. & Bldrs. C. K. Bryant, Craig & Isbell, Lehigh bldg. Owner Century Amusement Co., Walter Sacks, agt.. Center Square. Bldrs. & owner taking sep. bids.”
The Gem Theatre was advertised below the “Colored News” column of the Petersburg Progress-Index of February 10, 1954. One of the upcoming events was a live show called A Night on Lennox Avenue. The Gem continued to be advertised on a different page of the paper than other theaters through 1965, but in 1966 the paper’s movie listings were desegregated and the Gem’s ads appeared adjacent to those of other theaters. The Gem did not prosper, though, as by 1969 it was advertising “Adult Entertainment.”