Capitol Theater

213 W. Main Street,
Frankfort, KY 40601

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Capitol Theatre Demolition

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Built in 1883 as the Frankfort Opera House. It was open in 1971 was I was projectionist. Last known movies shown included “The Godfather”, “Billy Jack”, “Bedknobs and Broomsticks”, “Pocket Money”, and “Summer of ‘42”.

Closed in 1977, it was demolished in 1979.

Contributed by CRAIG ESCHERICH

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on July 18, 2006 at 7:03 am

Listed as operating in Film Daily Yearbook’s from at least 1941.

kencmcintyre on February 22, 2007 at 9:11 pm

This theater on Main Street was open in 1916. Obviously no way to tell if this was the Capitol or some other theater.

kencmcintyre on September 21, 2007 at 3:03 am

The Capitol was a Chakeres theater in 1970. It doesn’t look like it was open for too long after that.

NapoleonSolo on June 28, 2011 at 4:31 am

The Capitol Theater did not close in 1974, it closed in 1978 and was demolished in 1979.

bigdan409 on August 17, 2011 at 9:30 pm

It was actually located on the odd side of the 200 block of West Main St. When they tore it down they rebuilt a building there which is now the Dept. of Insurance located at 215 West main St.

rkfrazee on September 5, 2011 at 12:32 pm

The address of the Capitol was actually 213 West Main Street. At one time the building was owned by the city of Frankfort. During the early years, City Hall was located on the second floor of the theatre. Built as an opra house, the theatre had a fly loft and large stage. Dressing rooms were located below the stage.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 1, 2011 at 10:39 am

The Capitol Theatre was built in 1883 as the Frankfort Opera House, and was designed by none other than the noted Chicago theater architect Oscar Cobb. It was among the buildings listed in a 1971 survey of historic sites in Kentucky, prepared for the Kentucky Historical Commission.

The Frankfort Opera House and City Hall was also listed in an advertisement for Cobb’s firm that appeared in the 1884-1885 edition of Harry Miner’s American Dramatic Directory, and in an article about Cobb in a book about the Chicago Board of Trade published in 1885. Here, from the latter publication, is a list (probably not exhaustive) of theaters Cobb had designed up to that time:

“Wieting Opera House, Syracuse, N. Y.; Grand Opera House, Minneapolis, Minn.; Haverly’s new Columbia Theatre, Chicago, Ill.; Grand Opera House, St. Louis, Mo.; Schultz & Co.’s Opera House, Zanesville, O.; Coates' Opera House, Kansas City, Mo.; Nat. Mem. Theatre, Soldiers' Home, Dayton, O.; Faurot’s Opera House and Block, Lima, O.; Black’s Opera House, Springfield, O.; Sloane House and Block, Sandusky, O.; Academy of Music, Chicago, Ill.; Keokuk Opera House, Keokuk, Ia.; Standard Theatre, Chicago, Ill.; Heuck’s New Opera House, Cincinnati, O.; Opera House and City Hall, Frankfort, Ky., Doxey Theatre, Anderson, Ind.; Wood’s Opera House and Block, Sedalia, Mo.; Wilhelm’s Opera House, Portsmouth, O.; Case Opera House, Norwalk, O.; Washington Opera House, Maysville, Ky.; Louisville Opera House, Louisville, Ky.; Knowls Opera House, Washington, Kan.; New Grand Opera House, St. Louis, Mo.; Wellington City Hall and Opera House, Wellington, O.; Selma Opera House, Selma, Ala.; Belleville Opera House and Block, Belleville, Ill.”

epicmovieman on June 21, 2013 at 10:56 pm

The photo of Main St. in Frankfort had to be taken no earlier than 1946. The movie showing at the Capitol Theatre was “Tars and Spars” starring Janet Blair. That movie was released in January, 1946. It is sad that the Capitol Theatre was not saved. It was a historical building that should never have been demolished. At least the Grand Theatre was saved, but it was strictly a no frills theatre compared to the Capitol. The folks that saved the Grand need to be commended for their efforts. It really looks nice, and provides a wonderful entertainment venue for Frankfort.

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