Comments from Joe Vogel

Showing 151 - 175 of 12,131 comments

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Glendale Theatre on May 31, 2018 at 12:31 pm

This is another one of those locations where Google Maps traps street view inside a building. I think they must be getting paid to do this by the owners of the businesses on display. (I know Google desperately needs the extra money (/sarcasm) but it’s still irritating.) I’ve pinned the view in the parking lot outside the building, at least. If you go back indoors you can see the insides of a couple of cars you’ll never buy, but Avenue Nissan might have to pay Google to have you look at them.

Here is a convenient link to a regular street view. I’d have linked to Bing Maps instead, but they don’t have a street view for this location.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Joy Adult Theater on May 31, 2018 at 12:04 pm

I see that the ads for the Joy Adult Theatre give its address as 221 W. Houston Street, while we list the Joy at 421 W. Houston. Unless there were two different houses called the Joy we must have the wrong address.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Strand Theatre on May 30, 2018 at 7:23 pm

The September 27, 1919 issue of The American Contractor said that bids would be taken about October 1 for construction of a 60x155-foot theater building at 4th and Mulberry Street in Waterloo. Architect M. B. Cleveland had drawn the plans.

Local architect Mortimer B. Cleveland also designed the Plaza (later Orpheum) Theatre in 1914.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Rialto Theatre on May 30, 2018 at 2:52 pm

The Sounds of Early Cinema, edited by Richard Abel and Rick R. Altman, mentions the Nickelodeon Theatre and its competitor, The Electric Theatre, saying the two opened almost simultaneously in June, 1907.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Capitol Theatre on May 30, 2018 at 1:41 pm

The Capitol Theatre, with 617 seats, first appears in The Film Daily Yearbook in 1930. However, I suspect that the building was converted into a theater earlier. FDYs from 1929 and earlier list a house called the Circle Theatre, with 560 seats.

The only other good-sized theater that permanently vanished from the listings after 1929 was the 395-seat Orpheum, which was down the block at 225 E. Main. It seems very likely that the Circle, which had been in operation at least as early as 1922, was renovated and renamed the Capitol in 1929.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Ellicott Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 8:12 pm

The 400-seat Ellicott Theatre (1942 FDY seat count) probably opened in 1941. The July 3, 1941 issue of The Film Daily said that Motiograph projection and sound equipment had been installed in the Ellicott Theater, Ellicott, Md., indicating a likely opening within a month or so.

Ellicott City’s earlier movie house, the Earl (or Earle) Theatre, burned in December, 1941. I suspect insurance fraud might have been involved.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Fallon Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 6:17 pm

This PDF has the Fall, 2015 issue of Muse News, the publication of the Churchill County Museum Association. On pages 16 and 17 is an article about the Fallon Theatre. There is a black-and-white photo that looks like it was taken in the mid-1950s.

The article says the Rex Theatre opened in 1920. I found the Rex and its owner/operator, J. W. Flood, mentioned in the March 1, 1924 issue of Motion Picture News.

This April 12, 2013 article from the Nevada Appeal has additional information. J. W. Flood, a former vaudevillian, had bought an earlier Rex Theatre in Fallon some years before opening the New Rex, as it was originally called, on December 28, 1920. The house originally seated 1,150, with 800 on the ground floor and 300 in the balcony. Among other accouterments, it featured a $20,000 organ. The first film shown in the house, on December 30 and 31, was “Humoresque.”

Flood retired in 1930 and the new owners of the theater, H. A. Stone and W. G. Hall, who operated theaters in Ely and McGill, reopened the house as the Fallon Theatre on September 1, 1930.

Neither article says when the streamline modern front was put on the building, but the house was twinned in 1978. The Appeal article has a slide show with a (rather small) photo of the auditorium as it appeared in 1920.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Rex Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 3:43 pm

Polk’s 1918-1919 Iowa State Gazetteer and Business Directory lists the Rex Theatre at 213 E. Main Street. There is no Rex Theatre in the 1914 Polk directory, but a Rex Amusement Company is listed in the 1914-1915 American Motion Picture Directory (which probably was compiled later than the Polk directory), though with no address given.

The Rex is listed in the FDYs for 1926, 1928, and 1929, but not in 1927. The Rex most likely opened in 1914 and closed for good in 1929. The building at 213 E. Main is today occupied by a business called McKee Coins. I suspect that it might have been built specifically as a theater, as it has a moderately fancy front compared to most of its its neighbors.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Rialto Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 2:49 pm

There are some puzzles around this theater. One of them stems from this item from the February 22, 1919 issue of The Moving Picture World:


“Morris and J. B. Lince Will Be the Promoters of Proposed Forty Thousand Dollar Structure

“By J. L. Shipley.

“A NEW motion picture theatre that will involve the expenditure of $40,000 has been projected at Ottumwa, Iowa. Morris Lince, owner of the present Empire in Ottumwa, in conjunction with J. B. Lince of Des Moines, is the promoter. A corner location with exits on two streets is planned, taking up the building that now houses the Empire. It is thought work will be begun early in the spring and that the house will be ready for dedication by fall. Mr. Lince has made a great success of the Empire and believes that he will do equally well with the more pretentious theatre planned.”

A major problem arises from the fact that the Empire’s address of 223 E. Main Street is nowhere near a corner. I don’t see how an exapnded theater at a corner location could be “taking up the Empire Building” if the Empire was at 223, nearly mid-block.

Another puzzle is the photo on this page of Arcadia Publishing’s picture book about Ottumwa, which shows a view of the 200 block of Main Street around 1927. The Capitol and Square Theatre are clearly visible, but 223 would be in between the vertical sign saying “Pianos” and the one saying “Cafe” but that building shows no sign of having a theater in it. Literally, there is no visible sign for a theater, no marquee, no vertical, no readable flat sign. The 1926 FDY has the 456-seat EMPIRE Theatre listed in all capitals, indicating a first-run house. Would one of Ottumwa’s two first run houses have no signage?

While the Nickelodeon Theatre was listed at 223 E. Main in issues of The Billboard in 1908, but with only 150 seats, and the Empire is listed at that address in both a 1914 Polk directory and the 1914-1915 American Motion Picture Directory (no seating capacity given, alas) the question I have to ask, despite the claims of the 1931 Courier article, is did the Empire move to a different location sometime between 1914 and 1919, when the planned expansion was announced?

And I certainly can’t see how the 680-seat Rialto could have been shoehorned into this narrow building that doesn’t even reach all the way to the alley behind it. Perhaps the back part of the conjoined building at 221 could have been incorporated to provide a larger footprint, but it would have been expensive.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Capri V Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 2:39 pm

The Wednesday, May 27, 1942 issue of the Ottumwa Daily Courier said that the new Ottumwa Theatre would open on Friday, May 29. The original theater had been destroyed by fire on April 21, 1941.

I’ve also uncovered a bit more of the first Ottumwa Theatre’s history. A 1914 Polk directory lists the Princess Theatre at 229 E. Main Street, as does the 1914-1915 American Motion Picture Directory. The July 11, 1925, Moving Picture World said that $40,000 would be expended on remodeling the Princess Theatre. The Princess is last listed in the 1926 FDY and the Square appears in 1927, so 1926 must have been the year the name was changed, perhaps early in the year and after the completion of the remodeling that had been in the planning stage in mid-1925.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Rialto Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 12:49 pm

The May 6, 1920, issue of Engineering News-Record had this item:

“Ia., Boone—Theatre—Rialto Theatre Co., c/o A. H. Blank. 326 Iowa Bldg., Des Moines, let contract converting 2 story, brick, rein.-con. and steel hotel into theatre, to Kofab & Brawner, Boone. About $100,000; cost plus percentage basis.”
Another item about the project identified the Des Moines firm of Kraetsch and Kraetsch as the architects. Brothers George A. and Carl H. Kraetsch had merged their practice with that of Norman T. Vorse in 1919, a relationship that lasted into the mid-1930s, and it is likely that Vorse was the lead architect for the Rialto as he was for the firm’s other theater projects.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Bogie's Theatre on May 29, 2018 at 10:10 am

The theater was probably named for Humphrey Bogart.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Star Theatre on May 28, 2018 at 6:46 pm

The Star Theatre opened on December 15, 1927, as noted in that day’s issue of the Sedalia Democrat.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Bogie's Theatre on May 28, 2018 at 4:16 pm

Bogie’s Theatre could not have been in the residential district along Southwest Boulevard, but there are conflicting addresses from other sources. I’ve found references in the Sedalia Democrat giving the Bogie’s Address as 114 E. Third and 114 W. Third. Meanwhile, CinemaTour says that it was at 212 W. Main.

I’d say the correct address must have been 114 E. Third, as a June 26, 1983 Democrat article said that Central Press, formerly located at 116 E. Third, was relocating across the street, its building having been damaged by the March 5 fire that destroyed Bogie’s Theatre next door.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Uptown Theater on May 28, 2018 at 3:46 pm

The 1914-1915 American Motion Picture Directory lists 225 Ohio Street as the address of the Electric Theatre. A photo of the rear of the building at CinemaTour shows old red brick painted over, and several windows that have been sealed up on both the first and second floors, so the building itself is quite old.

It is probably the same building the Electric occupied, though the Electric was most likely a storefront conversion occupying only part of the ground floor, and the building was probably gutted and rebuilt inside to house the Uptown, and the Streamline Modern front put on.

The Electric is never listed in the FDY, and is mentioned in the trade journals only in the 1910s, so there was probably a long gap of more than a decade between the closing of the Electric and the rebuilding of the structure for the Uptown.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Dowagiac Theatre on May 27, 2018 at 2:24 pm

We have a conflict between the Sanborn maps cited in Ron Pierce’s description of this theater and the Film Daily Yearbook, which lists no theaters at Dowagiac between 1926 and 1947 other than the Century and the Beckwith (which was at Front and Beeson Street.) Both the Caruso and the Chief were opened in 1946.

Khnemu’s recent submission of the Chief says that it was in operation prior to 1931. If so, it never got listed in the FDY, and the Chief at 205 S. Front was definitely opened (and apparently newly built) in 1946. If the Sanborn maps show a movie house at the Caruso’s location in 1931 and 1933, perhaps it was the earlier Chief, and it had such a brief life that the FDY never found out about it.

Despite the claim in the 1977 News-Palladium article, I believe MJCaruso is correct in saying that no theater in Dowagiac was destroyed by a fire during WWII. The only theater fire in Dowagiac prior to 1977 that my own research has turned up was at a nickelodeon in 1908.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Chief Theater on May 27, 2018 at 1:56 pm

The November 10, 1945, issue of Motion Picture Herald had this brief notice: “The Larkin theatre company has announced plans for construction of a modern theatre in Dowagiac, Mich., to be known as the Chief.”

The Larkin Theatre Company was formed in 1921 and built the Century Theatre that year. L. E. Larkin had been in the theater business at Dowagiac since at least the early 1910s, having managed the Beckwith Theatre and a house called the Orpheum, which might have later been renamed the Larkin Theatre.

In the 1914-15 American Motion Picture Directory Dowagiac had four theaters listed: the Beckwith, the Orpheum, the Park, and the Pastime. The Film Daily Yearbook lists only the Beckwith and the Century at Beckwith from 1926 through 1946, and the Beckwith is unlisted many of those years, and most often listed as closed when it is listed.

The Chief was operating in 1946, though it didn’t appear in the FDY until 1947, the same year the Caruso first appeared.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Lincoln Theatre on May 26, 2018 at 7:12 pm

The “Theaters Under Construction” column of The Film Daily for April 9, 1938, said that the target date for completion of the new Cactus Theatre in Limon, Colorado, was June 30. The architect for the house was Earle A. Deits of Colorado Springs.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Highland Square Theatre on May 26, 2018 at 6:54 pm

The “Theater Openings” column of The Film Daily, April 9, 1938, identified the architect of the Highland Theatre as George H. Burrows.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Webster Square Cinemas on May 26, 2018 at 5:46 pm

The Film Daily of Saturday, April 9, 1938, gave the opening date of the Park Theatre as February 10.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Roxy Theater on May 26, 2018 at 5:21 pm

The Saturday, April 9, 1938 issue of The Film Daily listed the Roxy Theatre in Norfolk as a new house, opened on April 4. The item listed the architect as Ben Speigel, but it might have been a typo for Spiegel. Internet searches reveal no other references to an architect of either name, though.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Silver Screen Cinema on May 26, 2018 at 5:07 pm

This article with a history of the theater up to 2009 says that Bruce Babbitt changed the name from Gala to Silver Screen in 1981. It also says that an “open house” was held in the new theater on October 30, 1939. It doesn’t say that this was the Gala’s first show, but regular operation of the house must have begun around that time.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Colonial Theatre on May 26, 2018 at 5:07 pm

The July, 1914, issue of a trade journal called The Gas Industry had a brief item about a public demonstration of gas appliances recently held at the Colonial Theatre in Kendallville, Indiana.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Pikes Theatre on May 26, 2018 at 4:52 pm

The Saturday, April 9, 1938 issue of The Film Daily listed the Pikes Theatre in its “Theater Changes” column as a new theater opened on March 25.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Hancock Plaza 4 on May 25, 2018 at 8:17 pm

Commonwealth Theatres' Hancock Plaza 4 would hold its grand opening that night, according to the July 23, 1981, issue of the Colorado Springs Gazette. The 1,202-seat quad was Colorado Springs' first four-screen house. Commonwealth, founded in Lawrence, Kansas in 1930, operated nine other screens in the city, including the Cooper Triplex and Ute 70 which it had acquired from Cooper-Highland in 1977.

The Hancock Plaza was designed by Ray Stevens, architect for Glatz-Jacobsen Theater Design Consultants, Inc.