Strand Theater

Central Square,
Youngstown, OH 44503

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Strand Theater

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The Strand Theater opened in October 1916. A Moller theater organ, Opus 2171 Size 2/12 was installed in the Strand Theater in 1916. It is listed in the 1950 edition of Film Daily Yearbook with a seating capacity for 750.

Contributed by Ken Roe/Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 25 comments)

edblank
edblank on May 27, 2008 at 11:09 pm

Thank you, Jack and Wolfgirl. Alas, I’m a bit more confused than ever – not fault of yours. I don’t think that as a child who was visiting his older sister on that weekend in 1952 and walking to the nearest theaters, I was aware there were others in Downtown Youngstown.
The one time I returned with that sister, driving her there so we could both have a nostalgic look-around, the only thing familiar was the theater that had become the symphony hall — the Warner/Powers Auditorium. (I just hadn’t remembered the name.) I’m almost positive that was where I saw “Where’s Charley?” and that I misidentified as the Paramount.
On the basis of your notes, I think “Don’t Bother to Knock” was at the Paramount and the westerns were at the State, across from the Paramount. I have no explanation for not remembering the Palace.
Personal note to Jack: I’m quite surprised you recognized my name and a bit of my writing. I cherished my first interview with Ed and Wendy King and was thrilled, shortly afterward, to attend a full broadcast of “Party Line.” Wendy phoned me at home the night Ed died. I went to the office and spent the rest of the night writing an obit that began, “The party’s over for the man with the pretzels.” I remember it was almost dawn when I finished, so I stayed to read proof on it and make final corrections. Wendy, blessedly, is still with us – a very dear lady and a treasure trove of memories of KDKA-Radio’s greatest era.
Is there a way for us to connect “off line,” Jack? You can email me at
My apologies to everyone else for digressing.

wolfgirl500
wolfgirl500 on May 27, 2008 at 11:58 pm

As children, we see things differently than we do as adults. I know that the first time I visited downtown Youngstown, I couldn’t get over the excitement, and the first time Mother took me to a show at the Palace, it was a thrill. We had three theaters in my hometown, but none of them compared to the Palace.

I did go to see one movie at the Strand, and it was one on the most unimpressive experiences in my theater going. The only good thing I can say about it was that the popcorn was reasonably good.

As to the other downtown theaters (State, Paramount and Warner) that was a very different matter. It’s a shame that the Paramount and State are nothing more than fond memories, but thankfully we still have the Warner (Powers Auditorium/DeYor Performing Arts Center) and thankfully Powers still possesses all the furnishings that the Warner Brothers put there.

Aside from a few cosmetic changes in the Auditorium, everything else is original.

spectrum
spectrum on December 14, 2010 at 4:56 pm

The Strand is demolished. A large office tower and parking lot sits on the site.

wolfgirl500
wolfgirl500 on January 2, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Are you confusing the Strand with the Palace? On the site where the Strand was located is a high rise apartment building for senior citizens. The former Tod Hotel was there previously.

In a search through local newspapers we find that by the early 1950’s the Strand was closed as a movie theater and later reopened as a Burlesque house with live burlesque and adult movies. It ran this program for a short time until a projectionist/stage hand closed it perminantly and thanks to urban renewal the building along with the Tod Hotel were demolished to make way for the high rise.

Next to where the Palace was located was an office building and after the Palace was torn down the land was turned into a parking lot.

wolfgirl500
wolfgirl500 on April 12, 2011 at 12:41 am

The Strand Theatre had its grand opening on October 25, 1916 with the films “The Patriot” starring William S Hart and “Maid Mad” starring Louise Fazenda and Charles Murray.

The Strand had a mezzanine and box seats which were more expensive than the orchestra seats. Orchestra – .10 cents; Mezzanine – .15 cents and Box Seats – .25 cents.

In the mid 1950’s the Strand started its live stage shows presenting Country and Western bands before going burlesque and adult movies.

wolfgirl500
wolfgirl500 on April 13, 2011 at 1:41 am

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The Heller Brothers Company was the general contractor for the Strand Theater. This company built a number of Youngstown theaters including the Warner.

The architects were Knox and Elliot, the same firm that designed the Hippodrome. This firm was also the architects for the new Tod House Hotel of which the Strand was a part.

wolfgirl500
wolfgirl500 on October 14, 2011 at 1:16 am

In the write up announcing the opening of the Strand in the October 25, 1916 Vindicator we read that when the theater opened that it: “will seat well over 1,000 persons” while later references from the Film Daily Yearbook for 1950 say 750 suggesting that the balcony and boxes were at some point closed for some reason.

In finding a photo of the outside of the Strand at its opening and early days it didn’t have a marquee and its sign was flat against the building (see photos for this theater), yet for its day it was relitively plush.

Victorgan
Victorgan on August 2, 2014 at 10:11 am

The Strand Theatre contained a 2 manual / 12 Rank Moller Theatre Pipe Organ, Opus 2171, installed in 1916, at a cost of $3500.00. It was enlarged in 1919 to a 3 manual console with and additional 3 ranks of pipes added in 1919 (opus 2621)for an additional cost of $3450.00

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