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Actually, the site is still a parking lot. It is located across from the Granite Trust building on the other side of Chestnut Street.
Ron, I read somewhere that this theater was around until 1975, and had a second screen installed at some point to make it a twin. I do know that the mall that was constructed at the site, the Harborlight Mall was built in 1976, so it is certainly possible. I believe this was the fifth drive-in opened in the U.S.
Ron – The name of the drive-in on route 58 was, simply, the Abington Drive-In. The marquee was still there until about 5 years ago. I visited the site then, though there was not much to see. I have been told that this drive-in was only around for a year or two in the late sixties, though I have no way of knowing if this is accurate. Supposedly, airplane traffic from the adjacent Naval Air Station created quite a bit of noise and quite a bit of distraction during the films, enough so to close the place down…
To Ron – Was the Lincoln located on a corner lot? 585 Washington street is now a ReMax real estate office. It’s parking lot is on the corner of Washington and Chubbuck streets, and the one story office is next to it. Lot certainly looks big enough to accomodate a smallish theater.
I just stumbled across an old Quincy postcard on Ebay that shows part of the Capitol/Quincy theater. The photo postcard looks like it dates from circa 1960 or so, and the theater looks to be boarded up with a “for sale” sign on it. Ron must be correct that this theater was vacant before it was demolished, and not used for retail prior to Sears being built on this site.
I drove by this theater today and it looks like it is open to the elements. If the second floor had been boarded up at one time, it no longer is. The empty window openings around the theater are quite prominent. The front entrance is bricked and boarded up, however. Above the front entrance are the intertwined letters “S,B and T” in stonework, which I assume stands for the original name of South Boston Theatre. I agree with Ian that this place must be a mess inside….this building is not secure.
I just stumbled across a Boston Globe article from October, 1981 about a rock show by the band the Plasmatics scheduled for the Strand. The article states that the Quincy City Council voted unanimously 4-0 to disallow the concert, and to pull the Strand’s entertainment license as well. This must have been the final blow for this theater, and it probably came down in 1982-1983. Ron must be correct that there were some live performances it its last days….
Ron, didn’t think this could have been a triplex….interesting that this theater seemed to survive into the 1970’s, though I think you stated on a different post that it closed circa 1960. Interesting how most of the Quincy theaters closed around the same time. Thanks for all of your insight on the Lincoln, Adams, Capitol, Art etc…you have provided a wealth of information that I was not aware of. I’ve been meaning to check the Thomas Crane for the back issues of the Patriot Ledger that you referenced. As for this theater, the Lincoln, do you know what is now on the site? I’m guessing it is where the current Pizza Hut building is located?
Great comments Ron….if you have any other comments on the Regent, Quintree, Strand or any other Quincy area theaters could you post to their sites? I’m quite interested in getting some info on these theaters but have not had any responses to my listings yet. Thanks!!
I think this was probably the most popular theater in Quincy for a time. It was located across from the landmark Granite Trust building at the entrance of downtown Quincy, and most likely was built around the same time (late 1920’s). It was demolished for a parking lot.
Ron, I walked by the Wollaston yesterday. Nothing’s going on. Doors are locked, no boards or signs in the windows….but the poster for “Catch Me If You Can” is still up, believe it or not!
Check that, it may be the old Sears after all. I went by today, and it sure looks like the side of the building and the structures on the roof are pre-1980’s.
I’m not sure if the theater was converted to a Sears once it closed, but it was converted to a department store of some type. My point of reference is an article in the Quincy Patriot Ledger that states that the theater closed in 1952, was converted to a department store, and demolished in 1959. It’s possible Sears constructed the new building. Sears lasted until the early 1980’s, until they moved to the South Shore Plaza. I want to say that the Quincy Fair is a newer building from the mid-80’s, but I’m not sure. It could have been heavily renovated. I’ll check around.
The Alhambra Theatre was called the Art for some of its life. Heres a post from our friend Tom N:
“The Art was an Art Deco style building on the site of what is now an office building at the northwest corner of Hancock and Granite next to the cemetery which is also next to the old city hall. The current Flagship Cinema site used to be a Sears and Roebuck. When I was a kid, I remember seeing a faded sign for a theater on the wall of building near Sears. It gave the prices of the evening and matinee performances and it may have made reference to vaudville. I think my father said that they’d built Sears in what had been a theater building”.
The Sears building theater was the former Quincy Theater, don’t know when it was built but it closed in 1952 and the building was demolished in 1959. Tom, thanks for the info on these theaters.
The following is a link to an article in the Quincy Patriot Ledger that describes the play “Strange Interlude”, which played in Quincy because it was banned in Boston. This was at the “Quincy Theatre” on Hancock Street, which was on the current site of the Flagship Cinemas. The article mentions that the theater closed in 1952 and the building was torn down in 1959. This may have also been called the “Capitol” at one point. This was the vaudeville house. The Regent Theatre was in North Quincy, a few miles north on Hancock Street. Here is the link: View link
I’ve been meaning to add this theater; the Strand, Regent, and Alhambra (Art??) have been added to this site recently.
The Regent opened on December 14, 1925.
You are right on. Surely, any profits made from second-run flicks or “dollar nights” would not even begin to cover the costs of an extensive renovation. If there are indeed severe structural issues, then this is a different story entirely. It is obvious that Mr. Chandler does not have the resources available to make this a viable venue once again, so we can only hope for another solution!
I last visited the Wollaston in 2002. Yes, the paint was peeling off the walls and ceiling and the place smelled of mold. But, I recall it being exactly the same way in the 80’s as I was growing up. The side rows of seats have been roped off for years. The bottom line is, the Wollaston will need much work to rehab the interior, but it really hasn’t deteriorated much (at least to the naked eye) in the past 20 years or so. It is my opinion that the Wollaston is not nearly a “lost cause”. Fixing the roof and doing some cosmetic work would probably go a long way. The place hasn’t seen a new coat of paint in the past 25 years, at least.
Interesting fact is that this was the site of the Providence Cycledrome in the 1920’s. The Cycledrome was a bicycle track/football field that was home to the NFL football Providence Steam Roller from 1925-1931. This team won the 1928 NFL Championship by tying the Green Bay Packers 7-7 in the last game of the season at this field. The Cycledrome was torn down in the 1930’s and replaced with Loew’s theater in 1937. This was one of the earliest drive-ins in the country. I visited the site in the early 1980’s, and remnants of the drive-in still remained. I distinctly remember the burned-out projection building was still there, though not much of anything else remained. I think there is a strip mall on the site now.
Box Office Bill- You sure have a great memory! The outdoor theater that you are thinking of was probably the one that was located off the present 93/3, I believe it was called the South Shore Drive In (though it could have had a different name before that). One screen is actually still standing, and is very close to Route 37. I was curious about the name “Quintree Drive-In”, because I read something at one time that said there was a drive-in on Quincy Avenue, Route 53 called the Quin-tree. I have never seen any reference to it anywhere else, so I’m not sure where that one was…..Anyway, as I am in my 30’s, I missed the era of great movie houses in Quincy, but I do remember the Strand. I went there as a young child and I think it was torn down in the early to mid 80’s. I have also done a little research and found out there was also a Regent Theater on Hancock Street in North Quincy. I’m not sure how long that one was around, but it was built at the same time as the Wollaston, about 1925-26. I also know there was a Quincy Theater in Quincy Square on Hancock Street, is this the “Art” theater that you remember? I’ve never heard of the Capitol theater…was that on Quincy Ave?
Box Office Bill, I am a resident of East Braintree and am surprised to find out that a drive-in was located here. Where exactly was the Quintree Drive-in? Was it located where the former Quintree Mall and current Quirk car dealership is?