305 Main Street,
3 people favorited this theater
Edisonia Parlors and Vitascope Hall
19 October 1896-1897
305 Main Street, basement of Ellicott Square Building
NOTE: The previous Edisonia Hall (1894-1896) moved to the Ellicott Square Building in 1896, at which time it changed its name. This is where the Buffalonians allegedly saw their first motion picture, “Miss Jerry”. This basement room was run by Mitchell and Moe Mark as a “phonograph parlor” and a kind of a museum of electrical curiosities including the X-ray machine, cameras, phonographs, and now the kinetoscope.
Exactly twenty years later, Mitchell Mark opened the first $1,000,000 movie palace, the Strand Theatre in NYC. [Citation: Ranjit Sandhu]
IS THIS THE WORLD’S FIRST PERMANENT MOVIE THEATER?
According to Terry Ramseye in his book A Million and One Nights, this is arguably one of the first, permanent motion picture exhibitions in the world.
The only earlier claim is a “theatre” in New Orleans converted from a vacant building with chairs added in May 1896.
The distinction is that Vitascope Hall was constructed from scratch with no other purpose than to show motion pictures. So far, no other theater has been discovered which can make that claim.
As of August, 2007, the approximate location of the theater within the Ellicott Square Building has been located. The entrance to the Edisonia Hall survives in a photograph which is now posted on the Buffalo International Film Festival Website and on Wikipedia.
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater