Sea Street Theatre

Sea Street,
Quincy, MA 02169

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The Sea Street Theatre opened in June 1907 in the Houghs Neck section of Quincy. It featured “Moving Pictures” and “Illustrated Songs” and was managed by “Professor” E.A. Gibson.

Like many other nickleodeons of the era, it actually charged 10 cents admission. The name was later changed to Sea Street Dream Theatre. Further information welcomed.

Contributed by Ron Salters

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rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on June 20, 2007 at 11:48 am

There are photos of the Sea Street on page 95 of the Arcadia Publishing book “Quincy – A Past Carved in Stone” by Patricia Harrigan Browne, published in 1996 and reprinted several times. The two photos show the theatre both before and after the change of name. The theatre was a free-standing 1 ½ story structure with a pitched roof and wood construction. I am guessing that it had 500 seats based on the size of the building. It was located at the end of the trolley line from Quincy Center to Houghs Neck; the cars terminated right in front of the theatre. Nearby was the pier for the steamboats from the downtown Boston waterfront. The theatre may have operated summers-only because Houghs Neck was a summer resort for Boston. There was one matinee and one evening show per day. A female singer (who may have doubled as piano player) led the Illustrated Songs portion of the program, and the films were “The Latest from New York”. The following summer, from time to time, it was possible to “Buy One Ticket, Get One Ticket Free”, and they also had an incentive program in which one’s ticket was also good on the Steamboat line from the Houghs Neck pier over to Nantasket Beach in Hull. There was also a place called “The Palms” in Houghs Neck which apparently was a multi-use building and it contained a cinema. Later, there was a Rialto Theatre at 1295 Sea Street in Houghs Neck. Since I don’t have a street address for the Sea Street Dream, it is possible that the Rialto was a new name for the old theatre. I don’t know if the Sea Street was new construction when it opened in June, 1907 or if it was adapted in an existing building. I also don’t know how long the theatre lasted.

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