Osawa Theatre

608 Main Street,
Osawatomie, KS 66064

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 18, 2015 at 1:08 am

Prior to 1939, when it was remodeled by Corgan & Moore and renamed, the Osawa Theatre was called the Dickinson Theatre. What I have not been able to determine is whether the Dickinson, which is mentioned in The Film Daily as early as 1932, was the house originally opened in 1921 as the New Empress Theatre, which had vanished from the listings by the time the Dickinson appeared. If the Dickinson was the former Empress then it was expanded at some point, as the Empress had only 295 seats and the Dickinson was listed with 566.

The February 23, 1955, issue of The Film Bulletin said that the world premier of the movie Seven Angry Men would take place in Osawatomie, but didn’t give the name of the theater. It was most likely the Osawa, though, as the Kansan, if it was even still open at that time, was considerably smaller.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 25, 2012 at 6:58 am

In 1939 Dickinson Theatres embarked on a $250,000 project of remodeling and renovating many of the theaters in the circuit. An article about the program appeared in the August 19, 1939, issue of Boxoffice. All the projects were designed by the Dallas architectural firm of Corgan and Moore.

One of the houses that the article listed as part of the project was the Osawa. The theater had been renamed, but the article didn’t say what the previous name had been.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 25, 2012 at 6:53 am

Neither of the old buildings still standing on this block could have been the Osawa Theatre. It was probably where the modern Landmark National Bank building is now located. The theater has undoubtedly been demolished.

kencmcintyre on January 9, 2009 at 7:53 pm

From Boxoffice magazine, January 1946:

OSAWATOMIE, KAS.-R.V. Johnson, discharged recently from the army after five years in the service, has been appointed assistant manager of the Osawa Theater by the H.J. Griffith Circuit.

kencmcintyre on November 29, 2008 at 11:44 am

You can access more photos if you narrow down the categories. For instance, “1940s main street” gets you a couple dozen photos that you wouldn’t get by searching for “main street” by itself.

kencmcintyre on November 29, 2008 at 11:37 am

Here is a 1942 photo from Life Magazine: