1104 Main Street,
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Architects: Frederick E. McIlvain
Previous Names: Liberty Theater
The Liberty Theater was built during a time when heightened excitement and enthusiasm greeted motion pictures and their presentation. The building was completed and opened July 11, 1918, and especially designed for moving pictures. It was taken over by the Universal Pictures chain in 1926 and they operated it until 1927.
In March of 1927, United Artists leased the theater and the Liberty Theater’s policy changed with its new operators to continue to show a pre-release film for as long as it continued to draw a crowd. The movies were ones that had just been completed and were not shown at any other theaters until the runs at the various United Artists houses were completed.
As the decades wore on, the Liberty Theater changed hands and was renamed the Roxy Theater on October 10, 1947. As moviegoers fled downtown for suburban malls and theater complexes, the Roxy Theater succumbed to the fate of large swaths of the downtown loop. It was closed on January 9, 1971 with Jerry Orbach in “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight”. In the name of urban renewal, the buildings on the entire block were demolished in the early-1970’s, in this case to make room for the office complex City Center Square.
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