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I’ve added a photo dated 1935 of the interior of the original Southampton Theatre.
Ad is dated 1924. Have no idea why it loaded side ways. Don’t have the techie knowledge to correct.
At a 1997 meeting on he history of Southampton, oral history given by one of the participants alludes to the fact that, at some point, a roof had been added. Then, to accommodate hot summer days, panels were removed from the outer walls to allow for the circulation of air. The seating capacity was also reduced, supposedly, considerably.
The presence of an additional theatre on Main Street, which was destroyed by fire in the mid to late 1920s was also mentioned. No name was given. Back to research.
Manager Polley was again in the news in February 1914 when he announced that he was going to build an 800 seat air-drome next to, and fully independent of, the Babylon. Matinees and performances in bad weather were to be held indoors. Didn’t happen.
Riley’s Capitol in Riverhead was sold in April, 1925. This was less than a year after they lost their Capitol in Babylon as a result of bankruptcy. The theatre was sold for a reported $100,000 but one of the Riley brothers purchased $20,000 stock in the new company which redecorated the premises and renamed it the Riverhead.
Too many performing arts spaces on Long Island; one, long established, already in Westbury. Poor management, opening was more than a year behind schedule and the bookings are few and far between; bad location.
The new theatre hosted a performance of “The Eternal City” for the benefit of the Southampton Hospital. More than 919 people were admitted and many were turned away. The $202.43 raised seems meager by today’s standards. Hospital fund raisers were also held in subsequent years.
From the South Side Signal (Babylon) 10/17/1913:
“Captain Harrison L'Hommedieu, proprietor of the Alhambra, is planning to transform the hall into an uptodate theatre. He proposes to remove the second floor, and add large windows on the side, raise the floor of the first story on an incline, put in a good-sized stage, and otherwise make it an ideal playhouse. This will mean the losing to Babylon of its only large public dance hall, though it will make a more modern auditorium for other public gatherings. The cost of the proposed change will be well above $6,000.”
Well, that didn’t happen and he sold the building, excluding the motion picture equipment to the Odd Fellows.
The 1925 photo posted by Ken Roe shows the Bablyon with a very “home town” facade. This is a far contrast to the current modern one.
Reference is made to a comment made by Ken Roe on October 31, 2004 and those made by Orlando the same year. The original Babylon closed in 1922(see elsewhere on CT) the same year the current theatre, then called the Capitol, opened. After the Capitol went bankrupt in 1924 it was reopened under new ownership in February 1925. Presumably the name was changed to Babylon at that time because there is reference to theatre magnet Mike Glynne being injured in an automobile accident on the way to the opening of the Babylon theatre in February 1925.
According to one source, Glynne only acquired this Babylon, together with the Regent and Carlton in Bay Shore and the Garden in Southampton, in 1926. According to another, those four theatres were acquired by B.S. Moss from the Brewster circuit in 1926 never mentioning Glynne.
Land for the theatre was purchased in December 1926 for a reported $100,000. That was pricey. $100,000 was more usually the cost of the building.
But I trust you are familiar with the book. I actually ordered mine online from Walmart.
Really. I notice it’s not listed on the NY Drive In site. As a Drive In person have you ever crossed checked all the Drive Ins mentioned in The American Drive-In Movie Theatre by Don and Susan Sanders to see if they’re all on Cinema Treasures? I checked the ones from the Lost Broadway Theaters book.
On the Drive In site. I think they said 600 cars.
Tried phone books, newspapers the public library, people who lived there. Needless to say some of the information on that site, or any other, can be questionable.
If you look at the photos section in the reference made by Drive-in 54 there is information from the Peconic Bay Shopper. They did a subsequent followup article, too. That site shows a drive In in Centereach, NY. I, a theatre nut, do not remember it nor can I find reference to it anywhere else.
According to a Greenport time line the Sky Way opened in 1950.
The Army Entertainment site indicates the Fort Sam Houston is the second oldest of the military theaters. Didn’t specify which was the first.
When I was in the Army back in the 1960’s there were three theatres on the Fort Dix post, The Timmerman, which was a modern venue which could have been a focal point of any town, and two others, of the military type. Would be nice if someone could get info on these.
As you can see, telliott, it now is. But the last name used it not always the case on CT, for whatever reason.
And, remember, they did a major reno on the St. George which is just down the road and has parking and access to Manhattan via the ferry.
Re my May comment. Two unique films on the same subject.
Also, while doing research on the Unique Theatre in Patchogue came upon a reference that the 400 seat Unique Theatre opened in Sayville on July 29, 1913 under the management of Walter Smith. Oddly enough the theatre was just north of the Crescent at the intersection of Gillette and Main. Sayville historical never heard of it.
As seen in the news for the funeral service of Tracey Morgan’s associate. Surprised to see the seating isn’t all that large since it has a very broad street presence.
I would have thought it was named because of the proximity to the park rather than any actual relationship. Always remember looking towards it while waiting to get on some of the rides in the park.
It’s interesting that this building survived over a hundred years until it was demolished for the condo project, but it’s successor was subjected to three fires over the years and only rebuilt twice.