1863 Cinema

36 Michigan Avenue,
Smithers, WV 25186

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Lobby of 1863 Cinema - 1979

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Fountain Theatre was operating since at least the late-1920’s. It was operated by Logan Theaters in the 1940’s. Later renamed 1863 Cinema, it was closed in 1979.

Contributed by Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 16 comments)

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 10, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Here’s the short URL of the same link above:

http://goo.gl/maps/pmLuT

If you look at the upper left of the building, “Fountain” is engraved above the air conditioners. It’s not legible in the picture though (and perhaps not in real life either).

Jay Harvey
Jay Harvey on March 10, 2014 at 7:09 pm

I checked out the picture and I could barely make out part of “Fountain”, cool!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 10, 2014 at 8:35 pm

Clickable version of kpkilburn2’s link. Zooming in on the Google street view you can see the address, 36 Michigan Avenue, on the door of the building.

The building looks as though it could have been built in 1863, so I’m wondering if that’s how the theater got its name? Or was it named to commemorate West Virgina’s admission to the Union as a state in 1863?

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 11, 2014 at 9:54 am

Yes, “1863” was to commemorate WV and was also used for a restaurant my father owned before he opened the theater. He kept the name “1863” for the theater when he reopened it in 1977.

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 11, 2014 at 9:57 am

I was looking for a theater in Anstead, WV called the Ritz, later reopened and renamed Cinema 63 by my father. I don’t see it on the site, but maybe I’m just missing it?

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 11, 2014 at 10:28 am

On my blog, you can see a video tour of the 1863 Cinema as it was in 2000 operating as an auction house. The wallpaper was still intact and the writing in the projection booth was still legible.

http://kpkilburn.wordpress.com/2013/07/17/1863-cinema/

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on March 11, 2014 at 10:29 am

kpkilburn2: I have now added a page for Cinema 63, Ansted, WV.

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 13, 2014 at 11:34 am

A “complete” list of movies shown in the 1863 Cinema I compiled years ago. These are from memory and the projection booth wall (where we wrote the names of the movies).

The movies are listed by year of release, not necessarily the year they were shown in the 1863 Cinema. Titles with an asterisk (*) may not have been shown (again, going from memory).

MOVIES SHOWN AT THE 1863 CINEMA


[FROM 1974]

Blazing Saddles


[FROM 1976]

Car Wash

Eat My Dust! *

The Great Smokey Roadblock *

The Gumball Rallay *

The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams

Ode to Billy Joe

Alice Cooper: Welcome to My Nightmare


[FROM 1977]

Across the Great Divide

The Bad News Bears in Breaking Training *

Buck Rogers (This was a re-release of the 1950s serial converted into a full-length feature. It was promoted as “Star Wars Owes it all to Buck Rogers.”)

Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Damnation Alley *

End of the World

For the Love of Benji

Freaky Friday

The Gauntlet (the 1st Cinemascope movie ever shown in the 1863)

The Goodbye Girl

Grand Theft Auto *

Heroes

High Anxiety

High Velocity

In Search of Noah’s Ark

Pete’s Dragon

Saturday Night Fever

Slap Shot *

Smokey and the Bandit

Star Wars

Which Way is Up?

You Light Up My Life


[FROM 1978]

The Amazing Captain Nemo *

American Hot Wax

The Bad News Bears Go To Japan

Beyond and Back

Born Again

The Buddy Holly Story

Casey’s Shadow

The Cat From Outer Space

Coach

Convoy

Damien: Omen II

Deathsport

Every Which Way But Loose

F.I.S.T.

Foul Play

Goin' South *

Grease

Harper Valley PTA

Hooper

Hot Lead and Cold Feat

Ice Castles

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

It Lives Again

Jaws 2

Laserblast

Magic

Movie Movie *

Oliver’s Story *

The Other Side of the Mountain Part 2

Piranha

Return From Witch Mountain

Revenge of the Pink Panther

Sasquatch, the Legend of Bigfoot

Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Stingray

Thank God It’s Friday

They Went That-A-Way and That-A-Way

Warlords of Atlantis


[FROM 1979]

Note: Most of the movies from 1979 are unconfirmed because, after the theater closed, my father and I went to the 7th Heaven theater which was owned by friends of his. I probably saw some of these at the 7th Heaven in Cheylan, WV.

Alien

The Black Stallion *

Breaking Away *

Escape from Alcatraz *

Fast Break *

A Little Romance (The last movie shown in the 1863 Cinema)

Mountain Family Robinson *

Norma Rae

North Dallas Forty *

On the Air Live with Captain Midnight *


[MISCELLANEOUS TITLES — I DIDN’T LOOK THE YEARS UP FOR THESE]

High Ballin'

Seven Blows of the Dragon

Horror of Dracula

Curse of Frankenstein

Superman: The Movie

The End

Raggedy Ann and Andy Movie

International Velvet

Death on the Nile * (may have been Murder on the Orient Express)

Who’s Killing the Great Chefs of Europe?

The Shaggy D.A.

The Wiz

Young Frankenstein

Jason and the Argonauts

Simon, King of the Witches

Born Free

Digby, The Biggest Dog in the World

American Graffiti

Take This Job and Shove It

[Serials]

Captain Marvel

Batman

kpkilburn2
kpkilburn2 on March 13, 2014 at 11:55 am

I can’t believe I forgot “Walking Tall: The Final Chapter” — it was the first movie shown in the 1863 Cinema.

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