State Theater

2854 John F. Kennedy Boulevard,
Jersey City, NJ 7306

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State Theatre, Journal Square, Jersey City, NJ

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Located near Journal Square, the State Theater opened on April 24, 1922, designed by architect Percie A. Vivarttas with a classic Greek temple-inspired exterior and a refined Colonial or Adamesque interior. This was a large 2,169-seat theater which had a very large mezzanine lounge. Against one wall of this lounge, the movie was projected by means of a mirror system from the projection booth.

There was also a hole in the center part of the floor of the lounge which looked out upon the orchestra audience below. This theater had one of the largest Moeller organs ever installed in any theater, and it also contained a music and dance school at one time.

In 1948, while under the ownership of Skouras Theatres, it was remodeled to the plans of architect Jules Catsiff.

This was Jersey City’s first real movie palace and was sadly demolished in 1997.

Contributed by Gabe Della Fave

Recent comments (view all 28 comments)

GDellaFa on January 5, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Does anyone have any interior photos of this theatre? Would love to see them. I remember this great old theatre very well. I was in it a lot when I was a kid. Clearly remember seeing “Live and Let Die,” “Gone With The Wind” (with my parents and sister), a “Planet of the Apes” marathon, and “The Bad News Bears” here in the 1970s.

countup on September 4, 2012 at 2:30 pm

i was sad when i heard that the roof of the state collopsed ,and they had to tear it down. it maybe could have been preserved, likt the loews and stanley

Mikeoaklandpark on September 5, 2012 at 6:34 am

I saw one movie there when I lived in Jersey City in 1977 Pete’s Dragon

CAD on May 6, 2013 at 12:47 am

When exactly did this theater stop showing movies? I was born in Jersey City and I remember seeing Evil Dead II (1987) in one of the two theaters in Journal Square. I thought it might have been the Loew’s Jersey Theatre, which I had gone to before (I clearly remember Ferris Bueller’s Day Off on the marquee), but they closed in 1986, so it must have been at the State. Now it’s a 99ยข store…for shame.

rfd24 on July 20, 2013 at 9:14 pm

I began a lifelong love affair with Barbra Streisand when I saw “Funny Girl” at the State in February 1970. I will never forget the finale when she sang “My Man.”. Other films I rememberbseeing at the State: “Mary Poppins” 1964 or 1965; “Sleeper” in ‘73, and “Patton"in 1970.

ajp919 on August 22, 2013 at 3:20 pm

My favorite memory – “The House on Haunted Hill” with Emergo, the skeleton that flew over the heads of the audience near the end of the picture and then was rewound back into its box by Vincent Price holding what looked like a giant fishing rod. Just great.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 29, 2015 at 7:14 pm

1922 drawing of the State Theatre from this page of the April 22 issue of The Moving Picture World uploaded to photo page.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 29, 2015 at 8:01 pm

Architect P. A. Vivarttas appears to have spelled his first name Percie. That is how it appears on a number of official documents of the State of New Jersey, including the tax records for his firm, and a number of other sources.

markp on March 30, 2015 at 6:38 am

The heading above should be changed to reflect the correct number of screens. It was a quad when it closed. Not sure of when it was divided.

Mikeoaklandpark on March 30, 2015 at 12:31 pm

I lived in Jersey City in 1977 for about a month and it was a quad then when I saw Pete’s Dragon there.

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