Andrews Theater

Main Street,
Salamanca, NY 14779

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Andrews Theater

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The Andrews Theater was opened January 22, 1912 and was destroyed by a fire in July 1923. It was rebuilt to the plans of architect Victor A. Rigaumont in 1930. It reopened as a Schine theater in December 1932.

Contributed by Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 23, 2014 at 6:49 pm

On March 15, 1930, architect Victor A. Rigaumont received a copyright for drawings and seven sheets of blueprints for a theater to be built on Main Street in Salamanca, New York, for the Schine enterprises. I wonder if this could have been the Andrews Theatre? The deepening of the economic depression could have accounted for the delay in construction.

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on March 9, 2015 at 3:01 pm

The Andrews Theatre is listed in the 1914/15 American Motion Picture Directory, so the 1932 date above is either a renovation of an old theatre or a replacement of it with the same name.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 9, 2015 at 7:17 pm

The Andrews Theatre opened in early 1912, as noted in this item from the July 31 issue of The New York Dramatic Mirror:

“Andrews Theatre in Salamanca, N. Y., owned and managed by Max Andrews, built in 1911 and opened Jan. 22, 1912, with ‘The Country Boy,’ has been doing a capacity business since that time. It is furnished throughout with the latest improvements. Gas and electricity are used for lighting. The building is heated by steam and the system of ventilation is of service both Winter and Summer. In addition to fireproof construction, there are fire-escapes and automatic devices to open the doors. The seating capacity of the theatre is about one thousand, and the stage is ample in every respect.”
The 1913-1914 Cahn guide listed the Andrews Theatre as a ground floor house with 911 seats. The 1909-1910 guide lists only a 550-seat Teck Theatre at Salamanca, operated by Max Andrews. The Teck opened in December, 1908, according to an item in the December 25 issue of The Billboard. It appears to have been destroyed by a fire in January, 1910. Perhaps the Andrews Theatre was its replacement.

muviebuf
muviebuf on December 25, 2016 at 8:13 pm

The Andrews Theatre sat on the southeast bank of the Allegheny River. A photo postcard with the Andrews Theatre in the lower right corner has been uploaded. I believe the Andrews closed in the mid 1950’s after the Schine’s opened the more modern Eberson designed Seneca Theatre a couple of blocks up the street. The Seneca was on the same side of the street.

The Andrews Theatre continued to sit vacant until it was demolished in the mid 1960’s as part of the widening of the Allegheny River basin in conjunction with the construction of the Kinzua Dam in Warren County Pennsylvania.

The Kinzua Dam project was supposed to alleviate the repeated flooding of the Allegheny River in Salamanca and other river communities. However just a few years later on June 25 1972 flooding from the Alleghney River caused by Hurricane Agnes took out the Seneca Theatre up the street.

muviebuf
muviebuf on January 4, 2017 at 10:08 am

According to published reports it appears that the 1911 incarnation of the Andrews Theatre was destroyed in the July 1923 fire which swept through much of downtown Salamanca:

http://www.gendisasters.com/new-york/13758/salamanca-ny-business-district-fire-july-1923

It would thus appear that the 1930 Rigamount design was a replacement for the Andrews Theatre that was destroyed in 1923.

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